A Muscular Little Bonsai & A Muscular Bonsai Tool Sale


The thing that amazes me about this muscular little tree is how the base of the trunk almost completely fills the pot and how small the pot is for the overall size of the tree. Not just small for the massive little trunk, but small for supporting the profusion of lush foliage. There just can't be that much room for roots. Of course we know this is a show pot and as soon as the tree goes back to the nursery it will be put back into a larger pot. The tree is a Japanese black pine from our Masters Series Pine Book.
pine2A good way to check out new planting angles. Also from our Masters Series Pine book.
Now that our Pine Book is back
 we can once again offer this extraordinary
 set of 3 Masters Series Bonsai Books


Creating natural look jin, from our Pine book.


20% off ALL our BONSAI TOOLS
Including Watering Cans & Turntables*
TKRS-1-ZIP20% off Tool Sale Includes Kits & Sets and even empty tool cases

over 160 different Bonsai Tools and Tool Kits & Sets
Koyo Tools, Roshi Tools, Yoshiaki Tools, Bonsai Aesthetics Tools,
Okatsune Tools and several more

FREE Shipping on U.S. orders 49.00 or more
reduced shipping on all other orders

*tool sale does not include our Green T Turntable

Wraparound Bonsai & Two Great Specials End Tonight


This distinctively unusual Mugo pine received Marco Invernizzi's Ichiban* Award at the 2008 Art of Bonsai Awards. The artist is Alfredo Salaccione from Italy.

If you spend a lot of time looking at bonsai, you might come to appreciate unusual features. Features that make a tree not only interesting, but unique. In the case of the Mugo pine above, there are several that stand out.

The most obvious feature, one that immediately catches the eye, is the way the trunk wraps around and frames the tree’s crown. This alone, makes for a very unusual and distinctive bonsai. A bonsai that is unlikely to be forgotten.

Then there’s that powerful downward thrusting jin that pierces the tree’s crown. As if the tree is attacking itself. There’s also the relationship of the crown to the pot; the way the bottom of the crown almost seems to rest on the lip of the pot. There are others features that set this tree apart, but we’ll leave those to you…

If you’d like to see more great bonsai from the 2008 Art of Bonsai Awards, here’s your link.

*Speaking of Ichiban, we expect to have this amazing tool back in stock for the fall.


This rugged San Jose juniper planting is also from the 2008 Art of Bonsai Awards. It's by Nacho Marin, a favorite here on Bonsai Bark.

Our immensely popular Masters Series Pine and Juniper Bonsai Books are both back in print. And they are on special

Our Masters Series Pine & Juniper Bonsai Books
list price for both 64.00
Special Only 44.00 for both

Two Specials End Tonight at 11:59pm EDT

Tools-Koyo1-500x30325% off Koyo Bonsai Tools ends tonight at 11:59pm EDT

25% off 500 gram Wire ends tonight at 11:59pm EDT

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Before, After & Midway Through


Mugo pine by Walter Pall. Here's what Walter wrote about this tree: "This one has exceptional potential. Unfortunately, it almost died a few years ago. Now it is recovering and some day it will shine again." From the looks of it, I'd say it's already shining.

I can think of at least four good reasons to feature this tree…
First, the artist is Walter Pall, a favorite on here on Bark and someone whose trees are featured in Modern Bonsai Practice, a groundbreaking new bonsai book. Second, it’s a Before & After, which judging by responses is a favorite topic. Third, it’s a pine and our Masters Series Pine Book is now back in print (the pines featured are Japanese whites and blacks, but it’s useful for any pine bonsai). Forth, it’s a great tree and it has its own story

The photos in this post are from Walter’s facebook feed.



Somewhere between before and after. One of several shots in the progression that Walter put up on facebook

A Groundbreaking NEW Bonsai Book
for the well-informed bonsai lover


Modern Bonsai Practice
That’s a Walter Pall tree on the cover
and there are numerous others inside
plus a famous Japanese maple of Walter’s on the back cover
not to mention a wealth of vital information inside

Now Back in Print
Now on Special
B1PINE605-500x647Masters Series Pine Book
this is our 3rd printing
almost 7,000 sold so far and still going strong

FREE Shipping on U.S. orders 49.00+
NEW lower rates on orders outside the U.S.

Art Disguised as Bonsai Pots


These nine pots are but a small sampling of Horst Heinzlreiter's remarkably diverse (in shapes and glazes) collection of bonsai pots.

I hope you enjoy these exquisite examples of art disguised as bonsai pots as much as I do. The artist is Horst Heinzlreiter, a long time favorite here on bark. And even though we’ve shown dozens of his brilliant pots, most of these are new to us.

I spent a year of my youth in Europe, with much of that time wandering around art museums. Two of the artists who stood out are Joan Miró and Paul Klee. if you’re familiar with either, you might see traces of their works in Horst’s pots.


Nine more...


Up close...


Our 2 most popular Bonsai Books
B1-SET-JUNPINE-264.90 list price for this set of two famous books
 Special Only 39.90


Mostly black and white....


Nine more...


Ready for the kiln...

Two Sales End Tonight
72e2ed77-57e9-4c2b-9b19-224faa3b68c520% off Annealed Copper Bonsai Wire
made in the U.S.
sale ends tonight, July 25th at 11:59pm EDT

EMCAPS20% off High Quality Bonsai Embroidered Clothing
Caps, Ts & Aprons with famous bonsai on each one
sale ends tonight, July 25th at 11:59pm EDT

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Taking a Covered Wagon to the U.S. Bonsai Exhibition


There's almost noting more beautiful than a Japanese maple in full fall color. This one is from the 5th U.S. National Bonsai Exhibition website.

We just got a notice from Ryan Neil (Bonsai Mirai) about a covered wagon* full of bonsai that will be making the arduous journey from Portland Oregon to Rochester N.Y. for the 5th U.S. National Bonsai Exhibition. If you’re exhibiting and your bonsai (or your merchandise) needs a lift, here’s you link.

*It’s actually a refrigerated truck. The ‘covered wagon’ is a clever way to grab your attention (and indulge in a little word play).

Time to make your plans! You don’t have to exhibit or sell goods to enjoy the upcoming 5th U.S. National Bonsai Exhibition. All of the previous Exhibitions were mind stopping experiences and they just keep getting better. The dates are September 10-11 and fortunately the venue is the same as last year (if you were there you understand).



A small part of the vast venue and extensive bonsai selection on display


The 2016 logo tree


A small part of last year's vendor section


Spectacular Sargent juniper from 2014


Enjoy 4 Big Sales at Stone Lantern
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Enjoy Large Sales and Deeply Discounted Items

25% off Koyo Bonsai Tools
25% off 500 gram Bonsai Aesthetics Wire
20% off Copper Bonsai Wire
ends tomorrow night
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ends tomorrow night

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The Art of Illusion


The profusion of such tiny figures make this tree look absolutely massive. This effect is not an accident. Whoever put this together has a masterful grasp of spatial relations, perspective, the art of illusion... however you want to say it. He or she is also a very accomplished bonsai artist. Just the tree would stand alone as a superior tropical bonsai.

We don’t post that often on Penjing tray plantings, but the photo above was just too good to pass up. It was posted by Sanjay Dham on Bonsai Club India. Sanjay’s caption says only “From China Penjing & Scholars Rocks,” with no indication who the artist is or what the tree is.


penjing-copyHere's another masterful Penjing. It by Kuanghua Hsiao. We posted it in January - our last post with a Penjing lead.



Here's a much less ambitious Penjing, but still perfectly put together. It's from Zhao Qingquan's Penjing: The Chinese Art of Bonsai.


I like the simple clean lines and sense of movement and direction in this Japanese white pine planting by Zhao. It's also from his book.


B1PENJING6802Here it is - THE book on Penjing

Two Important Sales End Monday night
and two others continue
Wire32-500x15920% off Copper Bonsai Wire Sale
ends Monday at 11:59pm EDT
Copper is what the pros use on conifer bonsai
EMCAPS20% off High Quality Bonsai Embroidered Clothing
also ends Monday night

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Growing Superior Pine Bonsai

001pineOne of the most famous Japanese white pine (Pinus parviflora) bonsai in the world. After restyling by Masahiko Kimura (aka the Magician). This photo is from the White pine gallery in our Masters’ Series Pine Book.

If you would like to grow pine bonsai, there no better place to start (and continue) than with our Masters Series Pine book. We’ll show you just a few photos and illustrations along with the Table of Contents, so you’ll have some idea of the depth and scope of this remarkable book.

Though I know this post reads suspiciously like an infomercial (our Pine Book is just back from the printer). Still, you might enjoy the beautiful photos and useful illustrations.


Table of Contents
Introduction to Japanese White Pines
Kimura Transforms a semi-cascade using energy balancing & more
Cultivation Balance – Energy balancing and needle reduction
Goyomatsu – Balancing and redesigning
Kimura Plant Positioning – Nine possibilities, an in depth study
The Primary Branch – Selecting the best one
Multiple Trunk Bonsai – Three bonsai, three perspectives
Rock Planting – From to zuisho
Jewell to Whirlpool – Transforming famous old bonsai shari
Gallery of Japanese White Pine
TOC continued below…



Table of Contents continued
Introduction to Japanese Black Pines
Development of Short Needles – Balancing growth & needle size
Creating a Cascade – Styling, balancing & needles
Choosing a Pot – Accentuating a tree’s best features
Transplanting and Nebari Development
Pine from Seed
Restyling an Old Tree – Challenges & rewards
Gallery of Japanese Black Pines
Glossary of Bonsai Terms
Glossary of Japanese Bonsai Terms

Now Back in Print

Growing and Styling Japanese Black & White Pines
is suitable for growing any pine bonsai
list price 34.95

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take advantage of our wire and tool Sales
and earn FREE Shipping (see below)
Tools & Wire x3
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Masters Series Pine Bonsai Book Is Back

One of dozens of world class trees featured in our Bonsai Today Masters Series Pine book.

It’s back! To reward those of you who have been waiting so patiently, we’re going to offer it at a discount…. only 26.95 (list is 34.95). Order yours while the price is right.

If you need some encouragement take a look below…

Candle pinching. An essential needle reduction and energy balancing technique for almost any type of pine.
Elegance. Bunjin Japanese white pine.
If you'd like to grow some black pines from seed, here's a few steps from the only source you'll ever need.



The cover of our Masters Series Pine Book

While you’re at it
take advantage of our wire and tool Sales
and earn FREE Shipping (see below)

Tools & Wire x3

25% off Bonsai Aesthetics 500 gram wire
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You don’t have to live in the tropics to grow tropical bonsai, but it helps

tropThis sweet little shohin bonsai with its unusual flowers and great little Japanese pot is a type of Ixora that belongs to Pedro Morales' cousin Carlos C. Morales. 

Trying to catch a couple days at the shore, so rather than go to the trouble to put together a new post, we’ll dip into our archives. This one originally appeared July 12, 2012. I updated the piece about the weather and made a few other changes.

You don’t have to live in the tropics to grow tropical bonsai, but it helps. This summer we might as well be in the tropics. Night before last it rained so hard that torrentially is an understatement and so far July has been remarkably hot for northern Vermont. Still, it’s nothing like the tropics, where you can grow tropical bonsai year round, rather than eight months indoors and a four month recovery period outdoors.

All the photos shown here belong to Pedro Morales. You can visit Pedro on facebook or on his website).

tropdisplayFrom Pedro's facebook photos. All it says is: "Display Ganador (winning display) VIVA PUERTO RICO!!!!!"

B1TROPPedro's Tropical Bonsai book. It's the only one we know of in English. Available at Stone Lantern.
tropcascadeThis cascade is from Pedro's website. My apologies for cutting off the base of the stand (it's a long story).


troptokoPedro's tropical style tokonoma. Tokonoma is a Japanese word that means 'display alcove.'

Bonsai Wire & three other Sales
wire25% off 500 gram rolls Bonsai Aesthetics Wire
FREE Shipping U.S. orders 49.00 or more
and new lower overseas rates

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20% off Bonsai Embroidered Clothing

Moon Pine & a Masterful Moment


I like everything about this Japanese white pine and its Moon pot. Except maybe the clutter on the left, the color was enhanced a bit too much, no variety is given and there's no attribution. Still, it's a beautiful bonsai that I'm happy to share.

As the whole world migrates to social media, so goes bonsai. People and groups that used to have websites and blogs now appear only on facebook. Which is where I found the photos shown here and where we get about half the material for this blog (which also appears on facebook, of course).

In this case, our source presents both bonsai and Japanese gardens. We’ve occasionally shown that very mix here, and there is an obvious link. Though I’m not sure most bonsai lovers spend that much time or energy exploring Japanese gardens.

Because our source doesn’t attribute or link their sources (this is common on social media), we’ll follow suit and do the same (this makes me a little nervous, considering how many times I’ve pointed out the importance of attribution… still, there is some justice)


Though you might want to do something about the crossing main branches, nevertheless the connection with bonsai and garden tree pruning (Niwaki) is obvious.

An Essential NEW Bonsai Book
that’s different that any other bonsai book you’ve ever seen

The back cover of Modern Bonsai Practice. We meant to show it in our last post, but in a masterful moment of seniority, showed the front cover twice

More ways to save at Stone Lantern
Tools-Koyo1-500x30325% off Koyo Bonsai Tools

25% off 500 gram rolls Bonsai Aesthetics Wire
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FREE Shipping on U.S. orders 49.00 or more
Reduced Shipping on overseas and other orders