- Japanese culture
Bonsai is a living art that is appreciated worldwide. Takamatsu City in Kagawa is known as the leading domestic producer of these prized pines. In this article, we asked the father-daughter duo of Hanazawa Myoshun-en to teach us unconventional ways to enjoy this tradition.
Bonsai: A Living Art
Bonsai is an art form that involves trimming and treating a potted plant.
The tradition originated over 2,000 years ago in China. After reaching Japan, bonsai evolved with the teachings of Zen Buddhism. Today, its popularity has spread across the globe.
Since this "living art" has cultivated a long history, it has a great deal of depth to explore!
According to a Japanese bonsai specialist, "Bonsai are living beings. If you fail to water them, they will begin to wither. They also require pruning to maintain their shape. As you continue to take care of your bonsai, they become more lovable."
He adds, "I don't refer to bonsai as 'it' or 'that.' Rather, I call them 'my children.'"
These are the words of Takahito Hanazawa, the fifth generation owner of Hanazawa Myoshun-en bonsai garden. With his daughter Michiko, he currently teaches people creative ways to enjoy the pastime of bonsai.
Hanazawa Myoshun-en: Visit the Heartland of Bonsai Culture
The city of Takamatsu in Kagawa is the top domestic producer of pine bonsai.
With warm temperatures, long hours of sunlight, and little rain, Takamatsu has an ideal climate for growing pine. For over 200 years, the region has been cultivating pine trees for bonsai.
Today, Takamatsu is home to around 60 bonsai farms. Opened in April 2020, Takamatsu Bonsai-no-Sato sells these ornamental trees at a reasonable price.
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