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An unusual styling now has a container to match.

New pottery from Portland ceramic artist Sherri Aytche has given me some impetus to revise the planting of some of my bonsai, including this Shimpaku Juniper, Juniperus sinensis. The sinuous lines are characteristic of this species, commonly called “fishtail Juniper” for its habit of throwing long horizontal leaders away from the main trunk. This makes styling in anything other than the trypical “Oriental style classical Bonsai” somewhat difficult to achieve.

When we focus on underlying branch structure and train the tree to its intrinsic form, this more interesting kind of movement results. The branches are remarkably pliable, meaning both that it takes shaping with wire and that it resists holding the new shape vigorously! Patience is essential to creating a pleasing and long-lived bonsai presentation. I hope I have achieved this after years of neglect by the former owner. Twenty years old. $400