BONSAI WORLD A series of articles by The Shikoku Shimbun focuses on the attractions of bonsai which encapsulate small universes in containers.

Masterpieces in Kinashi area
Expressing natural world in pots

February 4, 2009

The 25th Kinashi Bonsai and Garden Plants Festival was held between Oct. 19 and 21 at the Kinashi Garden Planta and Bonsai Center, which is located in Takamatsu's Kinashi area and run by the Kagawa prefectural government. Traditionally, no particular prizes are awarded to any growers at the annual Kinashi bonsai fair.

But this reporter asked some bonsai experts to nominate three out of the some 20 masterpieces on special exhibition at the fair. Kunihiro Kandaka, head of the Kinashi agricultural union corporation, was among the experts. Deputy union heads Fumio Ideue and Keiji Kandaka made comments on the three pieces.

Kuromatsu (Japanese black pine) bonsai tree from Nakanishi Chinjuen bonsai garden

A kuromatsu kotobuki tree at Nakanishi Chinshoen bonsai garden in the Kinashi township in the city of Takamatsu. It is 60 centimeters high and about 50 years old.
A kuromatsu kotobuki tree at Nakanishi Chinshoen bonsai garden in the Kinashi township in the city of Takamatsu. It is 60 centimeters (23.6inches) high and about 50 years old.

This tree features ''happo ne bari'' roots that spread in eight directions. The spread of this tree's roots is excellent as they grip the earth powerfully. The surface of the wood is rough to just the right extent. A good bonsai tree must have thick roots and taper off toward the top. I think this is a typical example of that theory. The branches are excellently arranged as seen in the No. 1, No. 2 and No. 3 branches. The kotobuki variety of kuromatsu trees cannot be grown from seed and all of them are cultivated through grafting. They grow very slowly. There are 10-year-old or so kuromatsu kotobuki nursery trees. But this tree is precious for its great age. (Commented on by Mr. Keiji Kandaka)


Goyomatsu (Japanese white pine) tree from Kandaka Shojuen bonsai garden

A goyomatsu (Japanese white pine) tree at Kandaka Shojuen bonsai garden in the Kinashi township in the city of Takamatsu. It is 56 centimeters high and about 80 years old.
A goyomatsu (Japanese white pine) tree at Kandaka Shojuen bonsai garden in the Kinashi township in the city of Takamatsu. It is 56 centimeters (22inches) high and about 80 years old.

Generally, a short and thick bonsai tree looks older than a tall and slim one. This tree is old enough as it has a rounded top and handsome foliage. Long years have apparently passed since the tree was planted in the container, so it has character and gives a feeling of heroism. This tree makes an attractive impression, although it is of great age. The artistic quality of a bonsai tree can be heightened with good maintenance work by a skilled master. The producer of this tree is a sophisticated technician. This tree spreads its roots, stands up, and grows in the pot, all excellently. It can be called a real masterpiece. I think this piece exhibits the bonsai ideal of showing the figures and forms of the natural world in a container. (Commented on by Mr. Fumio Ideue)

Kuromatsu (Japanese black pine) tree from Ideue Kikkoen bonsai garden

This tree is a kuromatsu (Japanese black pine) tree picked from the wild. More than 40 years have probably passed since it was planted in the pot. This tree features a ''shakan'' slant and ''sharikan'' skeletonized trunk that are peculiar to trees picked from the wild. Its foliage of leaves is excellent due to its good management and cultivation. Generally, the upper parts of plants grow stronger than the lower ones unless there is human intervention. But this tree is well-balanced. The accent of leaves is arranged by delaying the timing of ''mekiri'' bud trimming or ''metsumi'' pinching out of buds. This tree reflects its producer's high level of technique and is the result of his steady care. ''Shakan'' slant-style trees are better suited to oval pots. It is also well potted. (Commented by Mr. Keiji Kandaka)

A kuromatsu tree at Ideue Kikkoen bonsai garden in the Kinashi township in the city of Takamatsu. It is 74 centimeters high and more than 40 years old after being picked from the wild.
A kuromatsu tree at Ideue Kikkoen bonsai garden in the Kinashi township in the city of Takamatsu. It is 74 centimeters (29.1inches) high and more than 40 years old after being picked from the wild.

translated by Kyodo News

Comments(1)

OscarNovember 28, 2010 12:02 AM

Great pictures! I also added some pictures of my trip in Kinashi, perhaps you like it: http://www.bonsaiempire.com/bonsai-japan/kinashi
Regards, Oscar

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