Bonsai School – Bonsai Definitions

BONSAI DEFINITIONS

Bonsai …………….  shaped tree in a pot [ or on a slab or anything that is instead of pot ]  Japanese limit of 1 metre in height

Jin…………   dead branch stripped of bark , left to be part of design

Shari………. area on trunk or branch stripped of bark as a feature

Shabamiki ……..  hollowed out part of trunk , usually associated with shari

Uro………….   isolated hole , commonly a disguise for a large pruning wound

Rammification ………   frequently dividing branches or roots , desirable !!!

nebari…………..  spoke like spread of surface roots at the base of the trunk buttress

Bonsai sizes

mame……………. very small bonsai , literally bean sized , about under 15cms

shohin……………..small bonsai , shohin is Japanese for ”small ”  about under 25cms [ was 22cms until the best bonsai in the class grew ]

kifu……………..  next size up but a class rarely used

chuhin…………..  medium size bonsai height limit about 45 cms but has clearly to be not a large tree , ie not heavy trunked

A word here about these size categories , you do not see folk with tape measures at Japanese bonsai shows , you are expected to have a sufficient feel for the art to be able to judge a tree’s category by just looking at it !!

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