Bamboo Chopstick Size

I finally found a supply of 5in dia. thick walled bamboo. Just in time for repotting season.

I was wondering what size (i.e. width) set of chopsticks would be ideal for repotting trees from Shohin to large size bonsai?

Should the smallest be about 1/4” wide? Then 3/8”, then 1/2”? Are these to small or too big? Any recommendations?

Thanks all!

My smallest one is about 1/4” wide (I also take out some of the thickness from the soft side when they go that small). My larger ones are around 3/8”.

I have a 1/2” but it feels too big to be useful. YMMV


I’m about the same. I have a couple smaller that, maybe half the width of a pencil for trees with the 1/16 left in them, but truthfully they don’t get used much. The 1/4 seems to fit in my hand well, the smaller the more hand fatigue for me.

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I made mine from some maple that I had lying around. They range from 1/8" (3 mm) to 1/2" (13 mm).

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I have some left over oak boards that I was going to try with until I found the bamboo. Very hard to source.

Thanks guys. I will try to make the 1/4 & 3/8 sizes and see how I do. I’ll probably botch up a few before I get some decent ones, but I managed to buy 4 x 10ft half poles, so I have lots to play with.

Don’t forget that you can modify them on the fly ie cut them down to size as and when required

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If you are using bamboo yes, but if you are building them from other materials it’s not quite as easy.

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I did find myself using my smallest one this past weekend. I was cleaning the shin of JBP that still had native soil under the trunk. The “needle” was helpful in freeing it from the roots that were there and to separate them to clean out dead ones. It’s all about use, application, customization…again why bamboo is nice as others said

I finished my first set of chopsticks this afternoon. I think they came out pretty well for a first effort. 8 chopsticks from about a 1/4 round of 13" long bamboo. The largest is 3/4" and the others vary from 1/2" down to 1/8".