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Studio Stories – Yamadorii Juniper from Japan (Part One)

Sometimes I work on nursery trees, sometimes I work on client’s trees……and sometimes if I’ve been a really good boy I get to work on my own trees. Hopefully these regular visits will give you an insight into what goes on behind closed doors……….

Studio Stories – Yamadorii Juniper from Japan (Part One)

This tree arrived in Europe from Japan early in 2005. It was a bit of a bush but it’s quality was immediately obvious. I was lucky enough to be one of the first to see it and quickly fastened my label to one of it’s many overgrown branches.

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The tree remained in quarantine until July by which time I was desperate to get it home.

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The tree may have resembled a bush but at least it was vigorous, strong and healthy.

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The long journey from Japan did not appear to have worried the tree and I was happy for him to acclimatise to his new surroundings. However, I did clean out the weaker foliage inside the tree to let in more light and air.


Mid-October of that year I was due to attend one of my twice a year sessions with Bonsai Master Takeo Kawabe at his bonsai school in Belgium. I decided to take this Juniper with me as my second project tree as I was now confident he was ready for his first wiring.


Most of the branches were retained but were wired and spread out to encourage more budding inside. In less than one year the tree already seems to have come a long way…. …………but there is still a long, long way to go………

Watch out for part two of this series where we will follow the tree through his “growing” years from 2006 to his appearance on the show bench at Newstead 4 in 2010.