WPC: Scale – BONSAI! Nature’s giant trees grown in small containers

There will undoubtedly be great photos for this week’s WordPress Photo Challenge and the theme, Scale.

Like many, I am in awe of majestic and giant trees in nature, especially redwoods and oak trees.  It is fascinating to me that the same trees that grow to hundreds of feet in height can be shaped and cultivated in a teeny tiny container.

At an Obon Festival here in the Monterey Bay area, I photographed these bonsai trees, exhibited as part of the festival.

The first photo will give you an idea of scale…

bonsai 1

The trees in the containers were between 20 to 50 years old and makes one really appreciate the devotion it takes to practice this Japanese art form.

You cannot help but admire a practice that can take a redwood tree (sequoias) — the tallest living trees on our planet, and normally growing 300-350 feet tall — and grow it in miniature format in a small ceramic pot.

Bonsai Redwood Tree

Bonsai Redwood Tree

My other favorites…

Bonsai Elm Tree

Bonsai Elm Tree

Bonsai Monterey Pine Tree

Bonsai Monterey Pine Tree

And there was even a bonsai with flowers…with my finger there for scale 🙂

Bonsai with flowers!

Bonsai with flowers!

Do you think you would have the patience to devote the years it takes to cultivate this art form?

8 thoughts on “WPC: Scale – BONSAI! Nature’s giant trees grown in small containers

  1. Lola Jane-
    My son in law is a Bonsai fanatic! Your post makes me feel like I should pay a visit to take photos of his collection!!! This is a magical and amazing strand of botany. The patience and time commitment taken to nurture the miniaturization of plants is fascinating.

    • Oh wow, you definitely should to that!

      These were the photos that came to mind for “scale”, but I’m sure with your super photography skills, the photos of his collection (and a background on why he started working with Bonsai, what he gets out of it, etc) would make an interesting post for plant lovers!

      It is a fascinating practice…

  2. What an interesting idea for scale, which you’ve illustrated perfectly! I cannot imagine the patience required. I seem to kill every plant I touch so NO, there’s no way I’d try my hand on this one!!!

    • Thank you, Tina. …I have learned a little more about photography since these photos, so I’m looking forward to visiting the Obon Festival this year and taking more! I will certainly keep “Scale” in mind 🙂

      I know what you mean….as much as I love plants, I cannot imagine growing Bonsai plants either and do admire those with the patience and skills for this practice.

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