Not Crazy, Dug from the Garden, Abette Rosso, Vampire Suiseki & Small Bonsai Lovers 10/25/12

Fluidity, power and so well groomed. If you’re in that “I don’t like that highly styled look” group, then you’re probably not crazy about this tree. For me, beauty isn’t restricted to a style or concept, so no problem (though you’d never see a tree in nature that looks like this). It’s was posted on facebook by Minoru Akiyama, one of Japan’s many outstanding bonsai artists. Now for the guessing part: Shimpaku juniper (too easy).


This is what can happen when good stock ends up in talented hands. Mario Komsta has an excellent series of photos on facebook that shows how he got to this beauty from a very rough looking Juniper that was dug from the garden. The grafted on foliage looks like Shimpaku. The original plant had very rough foliage that look liked San Jose juniper or maybe Prostrata. Here’s Mario’s caption “pot is ready as well but needs to wait till spring and this left skinny jin is bothering me a lot, cut it?”

In a post titled Lavori in Corso, Michele Andolfo calls this tree a Abete rosso. This translates as Red spruce (Picea rubens), which is one of three spruce varieties that grow in the northeastern U.S. and eastern Canada. I don’t remember having ever seen a Red spruce bonsai (this could come back at me), and am pretty sure that I’ve never seen one this magnificent. The illustrations below show how this design was arrived at.

We don’t feature suiseki very often here, but just couldn’t pass on this one. It’s called Vampire and was posted by Hirotoshi Ito on facebook.

If you’re a small bonsai lover (a little ambiguity for you), here’s something you might want to put on you calendar.


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5 thoughts on “Not Crazy, Dug from the Garden, Abette Rosso, Vampire Suiseki & Small Bonsai Lovers

  1. Hi! My name is Guido I’m a bonsai enthusiast from Italy. I love your blog. I just would like to point out that “Abete Rosso” is the italian common name of Picea Abies, that in english is known as Norway Spruce or European Spruce, and is by far the most common tree in the Alps and the tree that in Europe is used as Christmas Tree. Red Spruce instead is impossible to find in Europe (or at least i’ve never seen one not even in the best garden centers). Cheers! Keep up your good work,
    Saluti dall’Italia!

  2. About Minoru’s tree;I would get rid of the longest part of the driftwood or
    both of the upper ones.

    Yes.Mario please cut it.

    Oh,by golly,a smiling vampire!!!NEVER SEEN ONE LIKE IT.

  3. Agree with above. The jins are nice, but they distract from an otherwise exquisite composition.
    And there is no way that I could sleep with that suiseki in the house!

  4. Thanks Guido,
    I had a feeling it probably wasn’t our true Red spruce (Picea rubens).
    That’s the problem with just using common names; confusion often ensues.
    And it makes sense that you wouldn’t find true Red spruce in garden centers in Europe, you seldom even find them here, as they are not a popular our widespread tree. As I mentioned, I’ve never seen one used for bonsai, even though they have small needles and are handsome trees.

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