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Modern Styling Methods: Creating Fullness and Depth

In an earlier post, we discussed the pros of cutting back growth rather than pinching the needles back.  Now that you have done this, you’ll find that you have a lot of outside growth and not much inside growth.  As the needles grow out stronger, the inside foliage will die off or weaken.  Rather than let it die on it’s own, it’s okay to cut off some of the inside growth. The modern method of...

Juniper Styling Tips: Pinching vs Cutting: Which is Best?

Pinching or cutting your juniper foliage and needles.  Which one is the better method?  Traditionally, the technique for pushing back growth in junipers was to pinch the needle tips of the juniper foliage. By doing so, it would push the foliage back so that the branch would not get as long. However, modern method of styling a bonsai tree recommend letting the tips grow out strong to bring the energy out on the...

Balancing Blooms on Satsuki Azaleas

One of the little known secrets of working with Satsuki Azaleas is balancing their flowers. When working with a advanced older tree, the darker blooms will consume more energy than the light colored blooms.  In order to balance the tree so that the tree’s energy is distributed to the all the branches evenly, it is important to cut dark blooms that grow near the apex of the tree. If you do not cut the darker...

Training Satsuki Azaleas Overview

Satsuki Azaleas are one of the most desired trees in bonsai.  The most desired attributes in a Satsuki Azalea bonsai tree are a very thick trunk combined with full even foliage.  Unfortunately this requires years and years of repairing and training.  Luckily for beginners interested in training Satsuki Azaleas, the trees back bud very easily making the tree friendly to cutting and pushing back growth. The easiest...

The Importance of Branch Arrangement

Branch arrangement is most often the difference between a good bonsai tree and a wonderful bonsai tree.  Unfortunately branch arrangement is one of the most difficult things to learn as it requires good fundamental wiring and a good design of the tree. With the modern style of designing bonsai trees, the objective is to arrange the branches in a way that gives the tree the most full look, a full 360 degree view...

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