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I'm loving this tree. Even though we know it has been worked by human hands, the link to its natural state hasn't been lost at all. If anything it has been enhanced. Bonsai at its best! No variety is given, though it looks like a collected juniper. This tree is by Nacho Marin.
Most of us are influenced by the bonsai we see and study as we move along the bonsai path. This can be helpful. It can also result in conformity rather than a more personal and daring approach. But maybe less so with Nacho Marin, today's bonsai artist, who brought an artist’s sensibilities from the beginning. Even though Nacho Marin doesn't mention the species, the origin of the crazy pot, or give any indication of the tree's size, I couldn't resist. Photo is from Nacho's Facebook timeline.
I think this tree deserves some attention. Especially the massive shari (deadwood) with its protruding handle and only a hint of a living vein (peeking out lower left and upper left). Then there's the foliage which is somewhat groomed but still free-flowing, giving the tree an informal feel. It might also be worth mentioning that it's slanting style. You don't see nearly as many quality slant style bonsai as you do upright bonsai. Tree is 80 years old, a Juniperus by Salvador De Los Reyes.
There's a lot to like about a good Stewartia (Stewartia monadelpha) like this, including the fine ramification (branching). Only years of careful trimming can accomplish this. There's also the strong nebari that offers a sense of stability and a sign of age on any good Stewartia. And then there's the beauty of the exfoliating bark with its soft reddish shades. All this makes for a masterpiece bonsai. Photo from Luis Vallejo’s Bonsai Museum.
This contortionist tree is a Procumbens juniper (Juniperus chinensis procumbens). Northern California’s Redwood country is the home of some of nature’s finest trees and some very good bonsai as well. This photo was taken by Don Van Dyke at Redwood Empire’s 2016 Bonsai Show. No artists or owners are listed, but we do have the variety.
Here's what Michael Hagedorn wrote about this tree... "Another tree from my apprenticeship days, prep work for the Kokufu show. Always liked this tree. Although arguably junipers are best with more dynamic and energy, the quiet presence of this one had a charm of its own. All I did was clarify some of the padding and make minor adjustments"
This Shimpaku juniper is a two-headed monster. I have a soft spot for good double-crowned trees. Especially when one crown is clearly subordinate. Beyond that, you might admire the way the long fluid sweep of the trunk is mirrored by the long fluid sweep that leads to the second crown. Photo from Bjorn Bjorholm.
One of several great Shimpaku junipers from a post by Bjorn Bjorholm. I picked this one in part because of the little curlycue jin (dead branch) hanging down. I've seen plenty of other intriguing jins, but this one is so distinctive and in a place so prominent that it comes close to stealing the show.
Dazzling deadwood. I think I see a live vein on the left edge of the trunk. Otherwise, this spectacular old specimen is a study in deadwood (with a little rebar thrown into the mix). It's a Rocky Mountain juniper. This tree belongs to Ryan Neil, Bonsai Mirai. The tree was originally collected by Andy Smith of Golden Arrow Bonsai.