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

Tree's Shape (2) Moyogi and Bunjingi: Each Fan Overpower by Each Taste

October 1, 2012

 In our last article, we wrote about Chokkan and Shakan which had very different-looking. This time we will introduce Moyogi and Bunjingi. Each shape has very unique atmosphere so both are popular among bonsai fanciers.

Harmonious Beauty

 Moyogi is a bonsai shape which a trunk draw pattern with curve to all directions. Its popularity remains stable because of the beauty. Some Moyogi trees are received prizes in many bonsai exhibitions.

 It is said the most beautiful shape is to keep the apex and the point of base in line. The important point is a harmonious beauty in the ever-changing world. Moyogi can be seen in the stage of the Noh play and the Kabuki, and the painting on a fusuma.

 Kazuyoshi Kawazoe, owner of Issuien bonsai garden in Takamatsu's Kokubunji town, creates Moyogi. He says about the shape's taste, "This Moyogi is Kuromatsu (Japanese black pine) of Misho (grown from seed). It's about 50 years old. The curve is flexible and the pattern has a good atmosphere. Especially the first branch is great. As the tree grew, it gained the taste."

Moyogi having flexible curve and good atmosphere at Issuien bonsai garden in Takamatsu's Kokubunji town
Moyogi having flexible curve and good atmosphere at Issuien bonsai garden in Takamatsu's Kokubunji town

Unique Light Atmosphere

 Bunjingi was loved by writers and artists in Edo period. It is regarded as one of the Moyogi shapes in the general meaning. Its light atmosphere attracts many bonsai fanciers. Especially bunjingi of Akamatsu (Japanese red pine) has great taste.

 In general, the trunk is thin and tall. It is better if it has ancient look. The space and oldness is the important point. All useless branches are lopped off so some trees have no branches in lower part of the trunk.

Bunjingi having beautiful Shari in the trunk at Ikezaki Hidenobuen in Takamatsu's Kokubunji town
Bunjingi having beautiful Shari in the trunk at Ikezaki Hidenobuen in Takamatsu's Kokubunji town

 Hidenobu Ikezaki, owner of Ikezaki Hidenobuen in Takamatsu's Kokubunji town, says, "I think bunjingi is the final appearance of old trees which no longer have energy to keep branches. This Akamatsu is beautiful with its thin trunk and few branches. From the trunk's Shari, I guess it grew on a cliff with the trunk touch to a rock."
(By Shigeo Hano)
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