Bonsai–an art that has been acquired from the an ancient Japanese practice that is a part of their culture–is a method for growing trees.
Research has shown that Bonsai as an art form was originally found in China but was later borrowed and further developed in Japan. In Bonsai the artist grows little trees, that appear to be miniature versions of larger trees, that are potted in small decorative, shallow containers. The art of Bonsai grooms a small tree into a more “adult” idealized form. You can decide whether you want the tree to be extremely complicated or a very simple form–it is up to the artist to decide. In the art of Bonsai, the only thing that matters is the tree–pots and material are very secondary–and how the tree is used to express a concept and beauty in natural form. A well crafted Bonsai tree is an arresting, beautiful sight that captures the imagination of the beholder and creates within them a unique experience. A Bonsai tree can inspire, delight, soberness, silence, or simply charm anyone who gazes upon it. In some, a Bonsai can elicit a shudder as the viewer suddenly recognizes the transitory nature and brevity of life itself.
Over a long period of time, in Japan Bonsai were cultivated using native small trees–once demand increased they could not keep up so had to find other trees. This was a catalyst for Bonsai gardeners in Japan to search out different indigenous trees and create Bonsai methods for transforming them. With these trees they created different shapes that offered the illusion of advanced age. Bonsai art, however, has entered a whole new era with its popularity in the US and with this popularity have come new advancements in creating the little trees. When compared with ancient Japanese stylistic tendencies, the artistic proclivities for bonsai gardening in the US is far more complex, yet looser in terms of context and style.
The tree type you choose for a Bonsai tree is very important if you wish to create an artful and expressive bonsai. You should know that not every plant is suitable for creating a bonsai. The idea that underpins a Bonsai is the develop a realistic expression of a tree that is far older than the one being used–you will need to find a tree that has all parts in proportion and symmetrical like its: trunk, twigs, branches, buds, flowers, fruits and roots. The plant that you decide to use should always have very small leaves. If you use a plant with larger leaves, your Bonsai will not have the proper symmetry or proportion (plants like sycamores, avocado and mangoes). Different species of oak or maple are usually the best choice because they do really well with the methods that are used to create an idealized bonsai image. These trees have the proper proportion and symmetry in the leaves and this is very important. You can also you spruce, zelkova, pine, and pomegranate to cultivate the perfect little bonsai tree.
When you are making a Bonsai tree you are creating a living art piece so the plants you choose should pique your artistic tendencies and express them. You will want a plant that has lovely bark that can provide the illusion that is a mature plant. You may need to shorten the main branches. By doing so, you will create a better vertical line and direct the eye up and it will also aid the trunk and give it a more proportional appearance.
You must carefully decide and plan how you will give the illusion of age and carefully expose the top third of the plants root system when it starts to mature. The whole effect the Bonsai should give is that it is balanced and could easily float upon the air. The trees branches are used to create dimension and form for the bonsai. It is imperative that the branches are proportional and that everything is in symmetry with each other.