Are Bonsai Trees
by Andrew Green
What are Bonsai trees?
Many people think of tiny little Japanese trees cut and pruned
to a miniature size but literally speaking Bonsai means 'plant in
a tray' and while they are smaller than their wild counterparts
they don't have to be a couple of inches tall; they can be grown
in a pot in the garden and will be smaller than their wild counterparts.
Misconceptions about Bonsai trees.
Many people believe that training Bonsai trees is a cruel pastime
because the cultivator starves the tree and cuts it to such an extent
that it becomes unhealthy. Quite the reverse is usually true; while
they are cut and pruned quite heavily to keep them to the size of
the pot, they are usually transferred from pot to pot regularly
and are fed and watered much more often than their wild cousins.
Contrary to belief, Bonsai trees do not originate from Japan, but
there are records dating back more than 2000 years that show Bonsai
being grown in China. These Bonsai weren't as small as the Bonsai
that people often envisage and were grown on an individual basis
outdoors in pots. It was, though, the Japanese that took this art
form and progressed it to the level it is at now. This has led to
quite different styles in Japanese and Chinese Bonsai; the Chinese
Bonsai being much more freestyle and more lightly pruned than the
Japanese miniature Bonsai that are very heavily groomed and pruned
and look much more like miniature natural versions of the full sized
Bonsai trees do not live shorter lives than wild trees. They regularly
live for many centuries and are traditionally passed down from generation
to generation of family. They lead nearly exactly the same length
lives as their wild cousins and are often much healthier because
of the attention they receive.
The advantages of growing Bonsai.
Not everyone has a large garden where they can plant numerous trees
and let them grow as big as they want, and even those who do have
large gardens still need to wait for many years before the tree
becomes truly established. By growing Bonsai you don't need any
more room than the size of your pot and because you only need them
to grow to much smaller proportions it really is accessible for
anyone who is interested in growing Bonsai trees. You can even grow
them inside if you can recreate the correct conditions for the tree
you want to grow.
Growing Bonsai trees can fast become an addictive hobby and requires
attention to detail, foresight of how the tree will grow and plenty
of time and care. You will undoubtedly feel massive satisfaction
if you decide to grow Bonsai and are any good at it.
About the Author
for lots of information about looking after your bonsai.