Category: Styling

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Is it just one blob of green?

Manuel Germade re-styles an Itoigawa juniper This very compact juniper, grafted with Itoigawa foliage, has grown out of proportion. The shape of the trunk with its deadwood is very attractive. The main task for Manuel…...

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Is this worth spending time ?

Prunus spinosa/blackthorn as bonsai Harry Harrington explores the virtues of the blackthorn with its white flowers contrasting beautifully against its dark black bark Prunus spinosa is a tree species native to the UK and Northern […]

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Why does he want to break free

Massimo Bandera wants to work unhindered by convention For Massimo Bandera bonsai is very much an art form. The bonsai artist should be free from conventions and rules. In the process of creating an extraordinary…...

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Intimidated by its age

François Jeker styles a venerable 500-year-old Buxus ‘When about to style an impressive old Buxus like this, you are so intimidated that you approach it with trembling hands . . . Over the years, though,…...

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How to ‘crack’ a white pine

Masayuki Fujikawa transforms a white pine by changing the angle and compacting an elongated trunk. One of the best characteristics of this tree is the aged appearance of the bark, making it look as though…...

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This one?

Jörg Derlien’s all too familiar struggle to find the right pot fit for his larch The larch depicted here, a Larix decidua, was acquired in 2009 and obtained from the Alpine region of Wallis in…...

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All-American pine

Bjorn Bjorholm works on a pine grown from seed Bjorn gives an initial styling to a more than 50-year-old pine, grown from seed. This classic informal upright bonsai has a long and much told history…...

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Get rid of undesirable features

Masayuki Fujikawa transforms boring material into a semi cascade Masayuki Fujikawa: ‘The tree shown here is too big to be considered a chuhin, but the idea is not to make it a chuhin for the…...

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Too obvious?

A semi-cascade for this oak was so logical René Alber: ‘This huge, but compact cork oak (Quercus suber) is ready for styling. The trunk is massive, has a wonderful curving movement and a fantastic corky…...

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On the scrapheap?

Harry Harrington recovers a crab apple (Malus sylvestris) raft bonsai with a new design. I think many of us, as bonsai enthusiasts, will be familiar with the phrase ‘a bonsai is never finished’. However, I…...

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The Greek oracle

Elsa Boudouri styles a Juniperus sabina rastrera Greek enthusiast Elsa Boudouri is self-taught and became inspired by bonsai when she was 14. She mainly works with native varieties, like the medium-sized sabina juniper. At a…...

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What can you do with it?

Thierry Claude works on an impossible pine Despite the many doubts of his friends, Thierry Claude persisted with his plan to create a real show stopper from a seemingly worthless pine. Ultimately, all his effort…...

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Anti-clockwise

Harry Harrington reworks a Japanese yew with superb fluting. An elegant 88 cm Japanese yew (Taxus cuspidata) was bought to my garden by its owner in June 2020, explains Harry. My task was to style…...

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Worth working on?

There is almost no material that is completely useless David Soto: ‘My students, often try to mimic the work of great masters. It’s only natural, and if you don’t own one of those very high…...

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Lost and Found

Making the most of a bad pine Masayuki Fujikawa brings out the hidden character of a white pine (Pinus parviflora) Looking at the four photos below, there is nothing of note that one feels makes…...

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Don’t hide

The hollow trunk of a Satsuki is made to be a feature rather than hidden Takahiro Yamazaki (Yamazaki Satsuki-en, Nasushiobara City) works on a damaged, but characteristic azalea. The material, a Satsuki azalea that Takahiro…...

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Power lifting

Bonsai material so large it needs to be lifted by crane, yet that doesn’t mean it has no character. The deadwood and trunk have superb movement and the skeleton of the branch structure has had…...

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His father’s voice

Isao Omachi’s creates the bonsai his father envisioned Solving the problem with a new styling on a Juniper by turning the tree upside down using and making the most of the twist in the trunk…...

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The wild one

Wild olive trees provides one of most ideal materials for bonsai Marcial Yuste Blasco, who runs a bonsai school in Spain, prefers to work on material from the wild. For Marcial, it possesses the characteristics…...

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Just cut all the branches?

How to deal with upward-growing branches on a pine Impossible material with all its branches growing upwards becomes a fine bonsai. Toshio Ogawa notes the superb movement of the lower trunk and solves the problem…...

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A perfect fit for kengai

Giacomo Pappalardo shows the many variations of the cascade style One of the most dramatic styles in bonsai is the kengai, or cascade. It has many variations and its style options are almost endless. Trees…...

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Can this become a bonsai?

Garden material can be most interesting for bonsai. It can also be very challenging because it was not really grown for bonsai purposes. Bruno checks out a garden hinoki cypress to see if it can…...

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The masterplan

An impossible pine just perfect for a cascade Giacomo Pappalardo likes the dramatic moves of the cascading pines you encounter in the mountains. An unsightly pine with a very long pale trunk seems to be…...

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Rocking the pine

Todd Schlafer works on a Scots pine With a background as a rock musician Todd’s career as a bonsai artist is a big hit. We met Todd during Michael Tran’s Generation Bonsai event l and…...

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Is this a satsuki?

Satsuki specialist Tadao Tabata saw bonsai potential in the many trunks In a field at the base of Mount Akagi more than a thousand satsuki were planted and then grown wild. Two years ago this…...

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The big Sabina

Maybe the largest potted juniper in the world, a sabina juniper standing at studio botanico of Salvatore Liporace. It is waiting to be styled by the grand master…. This content is for Free, Basic, Plus,...

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A ‘root over statue’

Angkor Wat inspired Jerome Kellerhals to create a ‘root over statue’. Jerome guides you through the techniques of wiring, defoliating, pruning, repotting and maintenance to achieve denser foliage and smaller leaves on a Ficus. This…...

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