Horticulturist 'Mr Bonsai' expertly nurturing bushes into works of art

Miniature magic! Impressive pictures show Yorkshire horticulturist nicknamed ‘Mr Bonsai’ expertly nurturing bushes into works of art

  • Richard Reah, 47, is one of UK’s premier experts, growers and sellers of bonsai
  • Work involves shaping tree inside container with wires, twine, shears and moss
  • Bonsai trees have to be monitored daily for signs of disease or pest infestations 

These incredible photos show a Yorkshire horticulturist so expertly educated in exotic plants that he’s known as ‘Mr Bonsai’.

Richard Reah, 47, is one of the UK’s premier experts, growers and sellers of bonsai – which are made using a traditional Japanese art form in which wild trees are grown in miniature pots, and derives from the ancient art of ‘penjing’ in China.

His work involves shaping the tree inside the container with wires, twine, shears and moss – with bonsai trees having to be monitored daily for signs of disease or pest infestations.

Pictures taken at Richard’s workshop in Easingwold, North Yorkshire, show the horticulturist hard at work.

These incredible photos (above) show a Yorkshire horticulturist so expertly educated in exotic plants that he’s known as ‘Mr Bonsai’

Richard Reah (pictured), 47, is one of the UK’s premier experts, growers and sellers of bonsai – which are made using a traditional Japanese art form in which wild trees are grown in miniature pots, and derives from the ancient art of ‘penjing’ in China

His work involves shaping the tree inside the container with wires, twine, shears and moss – with bonsai trees (above) having to be monitored daily for signs of disease or pest infestations

Surrounded by dozens of his creations, Richard can be seen pruning away with various tools specially selected for his craft.

He said: ‘They bring a bit of happiness. It is a form of art, just not with a paintbrush and paper.’

Richard was first introduced to bonsai as a young man when his parents dragged him to the Harrogate Flower Show on the promise of a free lunch.

Pictures taken at Richard’s workshop in Easingwold, North Yorkshire, show the horticulturist hard at work (above)

 Richard (pictured) said: ‘They bring a bit of happiness. It is a form of art, just not with a paintbrush and paper’

Surrounded by dozens of his creations, Richard can be seen pruning away with various tools specially selected for his craft (pictured)

He said: ‘The first thing I saw was a bonsai – I knew then that’s what I wanted to do. It was something a little bit different.’

BONSAI: THE ART OF REPLICATION 

Bonsai is the reproduction of natural tree forms in miniature.

It has been practiced in Japan and China since 706 AD. Bonsai can be practiced with almost any woody-stemmed tree or shrub species that produces branches strong enough to be cultivated and will remain small through pot confinement and pruning.

Although they are miniature replicas, Bonsai trees should not be kept indoors at all times.

Like normal growing plants, they need light and moisture.

If cultivated correctly, Bonsai can last for hundreds of years.

In the following decades Richard has honed his skills to expert level and he now runs a business called North of England Bonsai.

He said: ‘The reputation of bonsai is that they are hard – easy to kill and hard to keep.

‘They are not. I have no trade secrets, I always tell people ‘they are trees, they live outside’. That is the reason bonsai trees grow.’ 

Bonsai is a Japanese term that literally means ‘planted in a container’ when translated. 

Originally grown in the far east, bonsai trees have become a pastime for people all over the world, with experts and enthusiasts describing the pint sized plants as ‘living, breathing art.’

Bonsai has been practiced in Japan and China since 706 AD.

The living art form was reportedly first introduced to Japan in the 6th century by a group of Japanese Zen Buddhism students returning from their overseas travels.

It can be practiced with almost any woody-stemmed tree or shrub species that produces branches strong enough to be cultivated and will remain small through pot confinement and pruning.

If grown in the right conditions and developed in the right way, the fragile plants can live for hundreds of years.

Unlike many other plants in the far eastern tradition, bonsai is a style of growing plants that does not have any agricultural or medicinal purpose. Instead their main use is for contemplation.

Richard (pictured) was first introduced to bonsai as a young man when his parents dragged him to the Harrogate Flower Show on the promise of a free lunch

In the following decades Richard (pictured) has honed his skills to expert level and he now runs a business called North of England Bonsai

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