The fascinating beauty of bonsai

The massive commitment that goes into maintaining a bonsai is sometimes hard to imagine, especially so as it is often passed on over countless generations. Hundreds of years of work and dedication with the sole aim being a perfectly shaped, aesthetically pleasing, tree. Each and every one of its owners or carers unrecorded — their names utterly irrelevant. All of them subservient to the arguably never ending quest for perfection.

Factors that, for me at least, further add to their natural, and also weirdly unnatural, beauty. Yet at the same time, none of the background stuff really matters. Not in the slightest. Only the bonsai does.

Japanese bonsai


    • says

      Couldn’t agree more. They really are magnificent things. Ongoing works of art that I never tire of seeing.

      • GenjiG says

        I do like the small arrengements that sometimes goes with them too, like in this case. They often really feel like a shrunken down piece of nature.

        • says

          Yeah, the bonsai alone are beautiful, but when displayed like this, that beauty is taken to a different level.

  1. Squidpuppy says

    Whenever I see or think about Bonsai, I remember a roadside attraction my family used to see on trips in the Izu Peninsula: it advertised “The World’s Largest Bonsai”. It was just a tree in a pot! I don’t remember where it was, and it was a long time ago, but LOL

    We used to pass it every time we vacationed in Izu, and on one such trip we finally decided to stop and check it out. It was cared for using Bonsai techniques, and presented in a Bonsai fashion, but as I said, it was just a Japanese Pine; normal size.

      • Squidpuppy says

        Well, they did have a good collection of genuine bonsai that was very nice in addition to the main attraction, so while there was a fee, it was worth it overall. They also claimed to have the oldest living bonsai, but, sure, whatever. This was on the way to the “Stone berry” farms in Izu, where they grow strawberries in hot houses on the side of a hill. They called them “stone berries” because they grew the vines through stone walls in the row hot houses. They’d give you a cup of condensed milk, and you could pick and eat to your heart’s content. Never missed that.

        • says

          That sounds very nice. Been to similar places in Yamanashi, where you can pick and eat as many grapes as you want. The cup of condensed milk is a nice touch.

          Glad to hear there were other plants to see. And the oldest living bonsai eh? Quite a claim! The oldest (I think) at the place I took the photo was 500. Quite an age.

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