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Mixed Forest Bonsai (& Others) by One of the Original Grand Masters


This magnificent mixed forest is by Saburo Kato, who was one of the original old masters of Japanese bonsai. You can find it and other remarkable trees in his timeless classic Forest, Rock Planting & Ezo Spruce Bonsai. You can also find some of the moist comprehensive how-to bonsai instructions anywhere

Continuing with our forest theme, today it’s four now famous forest plantings by one of Bonsai’s Grand Masters, Saburo Kato.

This remarkable slab planting shows how much drama and power one strong tree can add to a forest. It's also a good example of what you can do with ground cover to enhance realism and beauty. Though the original, which appeared in Bonsai Today* issue 23,  doesn’t say, it might be safe to guess that it's also by Saburo Kato. The trees look a lot like Ezo spruce (Picea glehnii), a specialty of Mr Kato's

Forest, Rock Planting and Ezo Spruce Bonsai
By Saburo Kato

This very large forest was on display at the 2017 World Bonsai Convention in Japan. Like so many other Ezo spruce forests, it was originally created by Saburo Kato. The photo was borrowed from Mark Fields, one of our lucky friends who made the trip to Japan.


Same forest, different perspective. Both this photo and the one above include people, which helps show just how immense this planting is. The photo was sent to us by Felix Laughlin, who is, in addition to being another lucky friend, is the President of the U.S. National Bonsai Foundation.



Close up. Realistically sized ground cover is an important piece in most great forest bonsai. This photo was also taken by Felix Laughlin.



The Remotest Hill, Mr Kato's most famous Ezo spruce forest from the cover of his internationally renowned book, Forest, Rock Planting & Ezo Spruce Bonsai. Here's Mr Kato's caption: "Ezo spruce (Picea glehnii). Sixty years ago I often traveled with my father to Ezo spruce in the large virgin forests on Kunashir Island off the cooast of Hokkaido. I selected the finest material to create this bonsai entitled The Remotest Hill."

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