As many of you know I went up to Pennsylvania be with my stepdaughter, stepson and meet for the very first time my great granddaughter Mackenzie! I so very, very much enjoyed myself with family.
One of the places my stepdaughter Lisa suggested we go to was Longwood Gardens, a spectacular botanical garden. It consists of over 1,077 acres of gardens, woodlands, and meadows in Kennett Square, Pennsylvania, in the Brandywine Creek Valley. Longwood Gardens is quite breathtaking and would take days to walk and appreciate all the beauty cultivated for visitor pleasure and enjoyment.
And so, I want to feature just one area that was particularly meaningful for me, the bonsai display. Bonsai is a Japanese art form using cultivation techniques to produce small trees in containers that mimic the shape and scale of full size trees.
My husband Ken, nurtured, loved, and developed several bonsai, one which is over 25 years old. For example, here is my favorite picture of this lovely miniature bougainvillea.
Many times he would sit quietly, in a relaxed meditative state and stare at his bonsai before deciding to make one careful cut. I have a little fishing tackle box that contains all his tiny little tools, trowels, wire, rakes, etc. I lovingly called him my bonsai master and have many wonderful memories of different shelves he built for his hobby.
So when I was at Longwood Gardens, it was with trepidation and excitement that I visited their grand display. They really are a work of art. Here are a few pictures I took.
There is a wonderful article on the Longwood Garden’s site by Kevin Bielicki in which he writes that “The art of bonsai is rooted in patience and harmony … a practice that entails contemplation and lots of decision-making along the way. Those decisions must be made from both a horticultural standpoint and an aesthetic standpoint in order to achieve the true goal of bonsai: nurturing and training a tree in a container to appear as it would in nature.”
Bonsai come in a variety of shapes and sizes, from all types of fruit and flowering trees and bushes. Here is a picture I took of a pomegranate tree, simply amazing.
Some bonsai are quite showy and can take a long time to cultivate. Some of the oldest bonsai can be 150 to 275 years old! Here’s a photo from the Longwood Garden’s site.
Obviously one gardener has passed the tree down to another!! I really should say one artisan to another. Hopefully, I have given you a short introduction to an art form that doesn’t involve paint, but involves a great deal of patience!
Whoever is patient has great understanding, but one who is quick-tempered displays folly. Proverbs 14:29