Bonsai and Penjing

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A popular feature of the National Arboretum is the extensive collection of bonsai and penjing. If you are like us you will have some idea about bonsai, being miniature versions of trees, growing in small decorative Japanese dishes. Bonsai has been practised in Japan for at least 1,200 years.IMG_2074

Penjing is quite similar but involves more than one tree. Penjing is the art of growing a miniature landscape in a pot or tray, and has been practised in China for at least 1,400 years.

Penjing Penjing

The oldest known bonsai and penjing are over 600 years old. While trees can live for hundreds and sometimes thousands of years, bonsai and penjing can live indefinitely because of the constant regeneration of their roots.

Coastal tea tree, Leptospermum laevigatum Coastal tea tree, Leptospermum laevigatum

About 80 bonsai and penjing are usually on display in the Collection, including a variety of traditional and modern styles, and both exotic and…

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