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

Visit Netherlands, Shohin at the same level is extensive

December 13, 2011

 Koji Hiramatsu of Shunsho-en Bonsai Garden in Kokubunji in Takamatsu had visited Netherlands for a week. He visited bonsai market and gave a demonstration of wiring. He also exchanged ideas with local bonsai artist in workshop.

Large exhibition place

 The reason he visited there is that he had welcomed bonsai people from Netherlands including Mr. Gerrit Lodder to his bonsai garden. Mr. Lodder was impressed by the technique of Hiramatsu family and bonsai trees in his garden so Koji Hiramatsu was invited as instructor. Mr. Lodder's garden is in Harmelen near Utrecht.

 It was the first time for him to visit Netherlands. He was surprised at the size of Mr. Lodder's garden. The bonsai exhibition area was as large as Japanese elementary school. There was no Japanese black pine, but he has some Japanese white pine and Chinese juniper, and Japanese bonsai masterpieces such as Chinese juniper of rock-grown style created by Masahiko Kimura, one of the great bonsai master in Japan.

Some national flags of production area are displayed.
Some national flags of production area are displayed.

Large-sized trees are used for bonsai

 In bonsai market, Hiramatsu gave a demonstration of Japanese technique such as trimming and wiring of Chinese juniper. In workshop, each local bonsai artist brought their bonsai and exchange ideas with him. They consulted him about cares and shaping.

Hiramatsu's demonstration of adaptation of Chinese juniper
Hiramatsu's demonstration of adaptation of Chinese juniper

 Hiramatsu said "There has been a blossoming interaction within the European Union and some groups from other country visited the bonsai market. The bonsai level in Europe is same as Japanese one and there are some good shohin bonsai. One thing I was surprised was that large-sized trees were used as bonsai trees which would be used as garden tree in Japan. People normally grow bonsai in greenhouse in winter season because Netherlands is in high latitude. Bonsai grows slower than Japan, so it may have unique attractiveness."
(By Shigeo Hano)
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