In life, we certainly need to spend some of our time to do the thing that we like the most called a hobby. There are so many kinds of hobbies to choose from.
They mostly come in very handy when it comes to killing time and make our spare time more enjoyable and fun.
One of the most interesting and most familiar hobbies on this planet has to be bonsai. Millions of people in many different countries see it as a very exciting activity.
The people who are not really familiar to bonsai tend to see this as tiny trees on the coffee table in their living room with odd shapes. Some of them even consider it as a special breed of dwarf tree. In fact, it is so much more than that. There are plenty of time and energy involved before an ordinary tree turns into a complete bonsai.
In general, bonsai is an ordinary tree that is trimmed and pruned back in order to maintain its small size and create any kind of shape that we want. We can turn almost any type of tree into a bonsai including a juniper or maple.
When other trees are left to form their shapes and sizes naturally, we spend a great deal of time and energy to make the tree grow its shape and size just the way we want it.
Having bonsai as our hobby would be a very fun activity and if you are very serious in being a real bonsai artist, you need to equip yourself with enough knowledge and become a really patient person.
Not only that it will take plenty of your time, there are many different parts of the tree that require your attention including the shrub, leaves and vines. If you love to know more about this interesting hobby, feel free to read the rest of this article.
A Quick Look at the History of Bonzai
The art of bonsai has been practiced since more than 1000 years ago. Many of us must have thought that this old activity came from Japan or Korea.
In spite of its rich traditional links to both countries, Japan and Korea are not the origin country of bonsai. It was China that introduced this useful hobby to the world for the first time.
Chinese history has shown that Han Dynasty had created a special courtyard which is meant to represent the Emperor’s entire realm where everything inside the garden represented in miniature. This place meant so much to the emperor that a death penalty would be given to anyone emulated the miniature plants.
However, the first officially recorded evidence that shows the art of bonsai actually came from China are a number of wall pictures depicting servants carrying plants on small pots known as bonsai. These wall pictures were found in tomb area of Prince Zhang Huia from the Tang Dynasty.
The art of bonsai is also well known in Japan and Korea. It was the Zen Buddhist monks that introduced the practice of bonsai to Japan. The introduction process took place during the Heian period.
Despite the fact that it was not a successful introduction in the monasteries, the practice of bonsai was so popular among the aristocracies. Japan and Korea managed to embellish the art of bonsai and added their own cultural overlay. However, these two countries still give all the credits to the origin country of bonsai, China.
Various Styles of Bonsai Plants
Growing a bonsai plant is nothing like growing some other regular plants in your backyard. If you plant a maple tree in your backyard, what you need to do after planting the maple is feeding and watering it in a regular manner.
You might need to come up with some pruning activity to remove the damaged or dead branches. Other than that, you can just sit back and leave the rest to the nature.
When it comes to growing bonsai plants, you need to come up with much more efforts, energy and time so that the tree will grow just the way you want it. In addition to the watering and feeding activities, you also have to prune and train the tree to create a certain form. Nature is responsible from growing the tree yet the final appearance of the tree is on our hands.
In general, we have acknowledged six different styles of bonsai trees. The Formal and Informal Upright are the two styles used to describe the kind of tree that is trained to grow in a straight up right direction. Should you wish to grow the plant to the right or left direction, then you are developing a Slanting style.
Should you look for a dramatic appearance, you might want to prune and trim the tree in a way that it resembles a cascading waterfall. Thus, it is known as the Cascade and Semi Cascade Style. Another popular style of bonsai is the Windswept. The final appearance of this style represents an image of constantly blown by the wind.
The Tools and Techniques Used in Bonsai
In order to create the intended final appearance, a bonsai artist certainly requires a number of different tools and techniques. In addition to the trimming and pruning techniques, the art of bonsai also involves clamping, wiring, grafting, deadwood and defoliation. Each of these technique should be mastered if you wish to come up with a more creative shapes and sizes.
We certainly require the perfect tools and techniques to come up with a pleasant masterpiece. When paintbrushes are the main tools for painters, hands, time and patience are the primary tools to every bonsai artist.