Starting a new generation of bonsai

Spring is propagation time at Shibui Bonsai. I try to start plenty of new trees every year to allow for plenty of choice for you the customer. It can take quite a few years to achieve a good bonsai but we need to always have new trees coming through to keep up supply.

I germinate some species from seed. Some will become bonsai, others are destined for garden specimens. This week I pricked out some of the seedlings that have germinated this spring.

Here is a pot of Japanese Black pine seedlings.

Japanese Black pine seedlings








Empty the pot out and gently shake off the potting mix. The roots are way too long to make good bonsai

seedling with long roots



so cut them short.

roots trimmed


before potting up into individual pots to grow on.

Note that the seedlings have been planted at a angle. Perfectly vertical trunks rarely make the best bonsai.




seedlings can be pricked out into individual pots at any time after they have germinated. I have sometimes left seedlings in community pots for several years before separating them into individual pots but the sooner they have room, the quicker they will grow.

Acer pentaphylum





Snake bark maple seedlings



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