Why I Love Bonsai and My Trees!

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My favorite bonsai nursery, ie the enabler

I started bonsai as a hobby 3 years ago. It wasn’t over an awe inspiring tree or most famously, with Mr. Miyagi in the Karate Kid but rather on an impulse. I was hitting the Southern California surf but instead of pulling out a new PR catch I found a large rock, reminiscent of mountain, stuck in the white water of the falling tide. I pulled it out and almost immediately I thought, “wow I bet a tree would look cool on this.” The following day I surfed the net looking how I could put a tree on a rock and I was introduced to bonsai. Right then and there, it clicked and I knew “bonsai” was something I wanted to do.

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2014 Southern California Surf

Fast forward 3 years I still love it and pursue it with ever increasing interest. Despite my love for this art I cannot concisely describe why I enjoy it so much. At face value, bonsai could show an artfully crafted tree–perhaps something nostalgic of an ancient mountain juniper:

Or what we idealize a tree to be:

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Beyond the appearance, especially since I don’t have any trees nearly as nice as the ones I’ve been posting 😀 , bonsai provides me with perspective. In many ways they resemble people. Like people, they take many years to cultivate. And over the course of time, they change. Struggles and hardship can become their defining characteristic or something that is overcome. Although a “perfect” tree is admirable in the meticulous care or growing conditions needed to develop it, the ones with “flaws” often show the most character and capture the most interest:

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Richmond Park, courtesy of Bobby Lane
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Japanese Maple, image taken by Sergio Cuan

And while the trees don’t give a damn about what we think, we impose our beliefs on them and in turn the many years of horticulture and artistry needed to craft them into bonsai. Ironically they end up becoming their own entity all together instead of a reflection of the people who worked on it. In some cases they even become a legacy, living past a human lifespan:

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400 Year White Pine that survived Hiroshima: US National Arboretum

If anything bonsai has taught me–rather, forced me to accept that anything good in life takes time to get. I enjoy slowly developing my trees as much as I  e̶n̶j̶o̶  am developing my own life. On both ends, I hope for the best and will continue to do the best I can do.

Thanks for reading my post and what you’ve been waiting for, my own trees! I will slowly give my various projects designated threads and fill them under the “Tree” submenu so that you can easily find them and check on their progress. If you’ve enjoyed my posts please subscribe, leave me feedback, or share it to others.

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That’s it! These are most of my trees but I still have other projects in the works as well. Progressions and more projects to be posted in the future.

3 thoughts on “Why I Love Bonsai and My Trees!”

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