Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Bonsai Trees are Both Plants and Works of Art

Article by Jerry Cahill

Bonsai is the Japanese word for tray gardening, although the origins of bonsai can traced back to China. Bonsai trees and plants are kept in minimal size, by trimming and pruning, for aesthetical purposes. The main idea behind the bonsai trees is to keep their look natural, while never showing that there was human intervention. Despite the fact that bonsai trees are grown in containers, pots or planters, they are by no means less healthy than a tree growing in the wild. The bonsai is kept small, by combining pot confinement, and crown and root pruning. The bonsai care requires dedication, creativeness, love for plants and patience. Bonsai trees can be grown indoors for a decorative appeal in a living room or an office, or they can be left in the garden to give a more exotic look. The most widely used tree for bonsai is the maple. The maple trees are perfect for beginners in the art of bonsai. But still, they are amongst the most incredible-looking bonsai around. The care for a bonsai maple tree is not that difficult, all it needs is the right amount of sun and water.

The main method of limiting the size of a bonsai is pruning, which is the careful removal of parts of the tree in order to shape it and limit its size. Pruning is critical for the development of the bonsai. It is the most important method, as it allows you to control the growth of the bonsai and shape it in the form and appearance that you want. This is the art of the bonsai tree, with the main idea of recreating the nature in a miniature form. The frequency of bonsai pruning, mostly depends on the bonsai’s size and age. If large branches have to be removed from the bonsai, it is best to remove them in the peak growing season of the bonsai, which starts from the early spring until mid summer. Concave cutters must be used, when removing those large branches from the bonsai.

Shaping the bonsai is achieved through several precise techniques. In order to maintain the small size of the tree, one needs to a apply a consistent regimen of pruning the leaves and the branches. Wiring the bonsai can also be used as a method of shaping it, as copper or aluminimum wire is wrapped around the branches, holding it in place until the bonsai can maintain this shape without the wires. But this type of shaping is not suitable for all bonsai tree, especially those that are too stiff or too brittle.

About the Author

Jerry Cahill, publisher and webmaster. See his work at Bonsai Tree

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