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

Kuromatsu (Japanese black pine)(3)Grow by Misho (Bonsai tree grown from seed) Get dignity over the years

July 7, 2010

 Since Yamadori (collections from mountains) and Shimagi (collections from islands) decreased sharply, some trees have been grown by artificial ways such as Misho (trees grown from seed), Tsugiki (trees grown by grafting) and Sashiki (trees grown by cuttings). Compared with Yamadori (collections from mountains) which has natural shape, Misho (trees grown from seed) and Tsugiki (trees grown by grafting) is made its shape by growers. So the ways have the advantage that people can grow many pine trees having same quality.


Mashima Takeru taking care of his Kuromatsu (Japanese black pine)
Mashima Takeru taking care of his Kuromatsu (Japanese black pine) at Mashimaen bonsai garden in Takamatsu's Kokubunji town

Grow many good materials

 Mashima Takeru, 59 years old, owner of Mashimaen Bonsai Garden in Kokubunji town, is known as an expert at growing Kuromatsu (Japanese black pine) by Misho (trees grown from seed). 80 percents of trees on the shelves in his garden are grown by Misho (trees grown from seed) and there are many pine trees over 40 years old.

The artificial ways such as Misho (trees grown from seed) and Sashiki (trees grown by cuttings) take a long time to form good shape and grow good trees decreased in nature. In spite of this, trees over 30 or 40 years old get magnificent appearance as Yamadori (collections from mountains).

 Misho (trees grown from seed) have started to grow good trees by planting seedlings in the field when Yamadori (collections from mountains) decreased. The policy of reduction of rice acreage in the 40th year of the Showa era helped to accelerate this trend. In those days, main tree grown in Kokubunji was Nishikimatu (cork bark Japanese black pine) and there were pine fields everywhere in the north part of it.

Growing by Misho (trees grown from seed) has advantage that growers can get many good materials for bonsai because they can nurse the young trees. And they can coordinate the tree form.

45-year-old Kuromatsu (Japanese black pine) grown
45-year-old Kuromatsu (Japanese black pine) grown by Misho (Bonsai tree grown from seed)

Cloned seedling

 Sashiki (trees grown by cuttings) is a relatively easy way to get trees having good Nebari (a condition of roots of a tree visible out of the surface of dirt). If people do Sashiki (trees grown by cuttings) with graft having better features of trunk surface and needles, they can get trees having same features with mother tree. It is called cloned seedling.

Since growers coordinate every young tree, they can expect the grown shape including Mikimoyo (trunk patterns) and Edakubari (Position of each needle). They usually wire two-year-old trees and start to make pattern.

It takes a long time to grow pine trees by Misho (trees grown from seed) and Sashiki (trees grown by cuttings). It is necessary to take great care every day and spend much time for getting dignity.

"There is no meaning to work hard sometimes. It's important to keep working for it every day. From the past, it is said that making good thing needs three generations," Mashima said and laughed. As he said, the great bonsai he took over from the former owner is getting better in his garden.
(By Shigeo Hano)

Comments(4)

Simon LinMay 16, 2012 5:36 PM

neolands@yahoo.com.tw
Dear Sir,
I look for the seeds of Japanese black pine "Mikawa".
Do you have bulk seeds to sale?
Regards,
Simon Lin

Robert HansenNovember 2, 2012 7:41 PM

Dear Misho San,
I tip my hat to you sir. Your black pine are exceptional. I can only use your example to aspire to a greater level of patience and natural understanding for my own aspirations in the bonsai field and also my Iai. Thankyou for the images.

sutee tongpechMarch 17, 2013 1:34 AM

I look for the seeds of Japanese black pine "Mikawa".
email:kathuo_man@hotmail.com

Mr TURPIN PhilippeMay 14, 2013 12:47 AM

Dear Mashima Takeru,
I come to Japan for the third time.
I will be in Kyoto in November 2013 for TAIKAN Ten.
Then I will visit the village of Kinashi
Is it possible to visit your bonsai garden?
I appreciate your way of cultivating black pines
and I'd like to meet you.
I thank you in advance
See you soon!

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