How To Begin

If you study very carefully the way trees grow in nature, it is possible to design a realistic looking bonsai without knowing the names of styles, etc. The most important part is always remember that you are working with a living plant. Look carefully at its natural characteristics and you may discern within them a suitable style, or styles.

Once a certain "shape" begins to reveal itself, you will find that gentle bending of a branch before wiring will increase its flexibility and give you an idea of the correct strength of wire. What you are looking for is a wire that will give you a tension slightly more than the tension of the branch. Tender-barked trees, such as maples, should be trained with paper-wrapped wire to protect the bark.

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