Stay Home Bonsai Projects

What projects are you working on or did you made during the stay home crisis? Show your work if you want.
I recently made some rock plantings from nursery stock chamaecyparis a left over pot and a landscape fishtank rock.


Wow ! Those came out great. That is also some nice looking fish tank rock my friend. Looking forward to seeing them fill in.

Cool projects @Bontski !
I’ve got a lot of long-term projects going on, many of which look quite humble still, but I’m committed to a long term vision with them. Here are a few:

Acer campestre forest planting in development, grown from very cheap bare-root hedging stock over 8 years.

Shohin Taxus baccata into a small pot for the first time this year, quite pleased with this one as I grew everything from a few bids on a collected stump.

Mother and child collected Ligustrum vulgare into a small pot and primary structure set.

A root over rock Acer campestre from the same batch as the forest planting. This went into this gorgeous Peter Krebs pot. Next year it will get an additional root grafting in a key area. From now on I’ll be running out sacrifice branches to increase taper while building branch structure and ramification. It’s will look much better in a decade.

…and that’s about enough from me.


Nice projects Silva, they all look great and are a good start to build nice bonsai for the future.

Here an other project I started in early spring. A nice peace of deadwood I found during a walk in the forest, cleaned it up and bought some young chamaecyparis in the local plant nursery, bought a pot and put all together in a landscape that I like to call Godzilla.


My Covid pergola and benches. I bought all the materials right before lockdown, very fortuitous.


Nice work Brad. You can even put a shade cloth.

Thanks. Shade cloth is the plan once things heat up a little more. Need to rig up a micro sprinkler system too.

I’m guilty of not staying home, but to be fair, I just got in my car and drove far away from people and up to the snow to get this Western Hemlock

I really want to set up proper benches, but I need materials, and that means interacting with people


Going yamadori hunting is a great project too. i’m curious about the design in a few years. The trunk looks big. Great job

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One more project, my wife and kids bought me this field grown Acer palmatum ‘shishigashira’ in April of 2019. It wasn’t intended as bonsai stock by the growers, but I think it’s got good potential. This year I did a big repot into good substrate, started branch reduction (including an Ebihara style notch cut) and three air layers:


Tell me about the notch cut reduction, this is new to me!

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Thank you! I tried to get as many roots as possible and really was fortunate most of the fine roots were embedded in soft rotting wood, giving them protection and moisture retention in the long term! I really need to get some power tools to build proper boxes rather than relying on produce crates (but they are free :woman_shrugging:)

@zlessley Ebihara was a specialist grower of Japanese maples, he developed numerous interesting and innovative techniques. I’ve seen photos and explanations of the notch cut (though I’ve never seen anyone report the long-term results). The principal is that a large wound is hard to heal and if there are no branches bellow the cut severe die back is a likelihood. Here you cut halfway or more through the branch fromthe top and remove an notch. My inference is that the connection to the branch bellow the cut prevents die back and whilst the free growth above encourages calousing as ten resources are transferred back down the trunk causing collar formation. In turn this should allow further reduction later on without die back. I’ll see what the response is after a year and decide if I make the full cut or keep it going longer. It’s a big (and somewhat expensive in this case) experiment, but I’m too curious about it not to try!


P.s. the reason for attempting it in this case is that those two branches were exactly equal in thickness and so I wanted to grow a thinner branch at that site. If I get back budding around the cut that would be ideal!

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I made these with clay dug from my back yard.


Looks good. Do you have a kiln at home?

Like Brad, I’ve been busy building at home. I have since replaced the solid roof with a clear one.


Tons of work done this spring/summer!


Cool benches David. Really quite elegant. Have you sealed the feet to stop rot? If so what with? Mine started to rot away within two years.