Michael Hagedorn

Impressions from the BCI / Asia-Pacific / HWA-FONG / 1st Bonsai Science Symposium

This has been a stimulating, massive, thought-provoking, multiple-organization event hosted in Taichung, Taiwan. Today I’ll just show some images and some initial thoughts, and will do a follow-up post when I’ve had time to compose some further thoughts.

Enjoy the photos! I do apologize for the quality of them, they were phone photos and not my usual quality, and then it was such a packed show space that several unknown elbows made appearances. More soon-

It’s best to bear in mind that the junipers in Taiwan are grown from a cutting for about 30-40 years to reach this sort of size. And this is a big tree. They all are. On the outside of the 3′ / 1 m size range for the most part.

This is a Celtis, a hackberry.

This juniper was also grown from cutting, believe it or not. (Apologies for my first comment on this photo, it was by word of mouth and incorrect, that it was collected.)

And this one…just as big…also created from a cutting. High heat, high humidity, lots of sun = junipers grow like weeds. But, make no mistake, with that kind of trunk quality, tons of labor hours went into it over many years. Cutting grown quality does not happen by itself.

Shohin display.

A Premna. These broadleaf evergreens, the ficus, even the Hibiscus, were all huge trees. Often 5-6′ wide.

A boxwood. Massive.

Another Premna.

Eleagnus, with the smallest leaves I’ve ever seen.

Closeup of Hibiscus twigging.

Spectacular juniper, again grown from cutting for 40 years and looking like a yamadori, being admired by Kunio Kobayashi. This tree won an award.

One of their ficus, a microcarpa. Again a huge wingspan.

A black pine.

Another hackberry. Beautiful work.


Pine, I didn’t record the species on this one.

Another closeup of Hibiscus twigging. Incredible ramification. (And apologies again for my earlier comment here, water is only used to clean up after cutting leaves off. Thanks Jose for clarifying both of my errata!)

And, most unusually for Taiwan, a delicate bunjin juniper. This was arresting for its stark difference from the rest.

And ending with a huge, well-detailed Hibiscus. The pot…well…it’s a different flavor all around here in Taiwan. Been a great visit, more about the science symposium and other parts of the event next time.