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Day 170: The Bonsai Court

Day 170 of 365 Things To Do In Pasadena takes us back to The Huntington Library and Botanical Gardens straight to its Bonsai Collection.

The Bonsai is a Japanese art form using miniature trees grown in containers.  And, the Huntington has one of the most amazing collections to be seen.  Located where?  The Japanese Gardens, of course.

The Bonsai Courts

There were plenty of Bonsai to look at, however,I was blown away by the The Bonsai Pomegranate trees.  These tiny trees had huge pomegranates on them.  It was really fascinating to see the different trunk shapes… absolutely gorgeous!

Bonsai pomegranate with quirky trunk

Pomegranate Bonsai

Bonsai Tree

How Did The Bonsai Court Get Its Start?

In a joint effort to build a world-class bonsai collection for the public in Southern California, the Golden State Bonsai Federation (GSBF) and the Huntington Library and Botanical Gardens established the GSBF Collection at the Huntington in 1993.

Today, the growing collection features bonsai masterpieces and viewing stones from noted artists throughout the region, and is curated by the internationally known bonsai master, Ben Oki.

As part of The Huntington’s formal Japanese Garden complex, the GSBF Collection at The Huntington offers a chance for visitors from around the world to gain a more complete understanding of traditional Japanese art and culture, and to develop an even greater appreciation for the wonder of nature as expressed through this emerging global art form.

Per Wikipedia, the Bonsai is primarily for contemplation.  The practice of bonsai is sometimes confused with dwarfing, but dwarfing more accurately refers to research and creation of plant cultivars that are permanent, genetic miniatures of existing species. Bonsai does not require genetically dwarfed trees, but rather depends on growing small trees from regular stock and seeds. Bonsai uses cultivation techniques like pruning, root reduction, potting, defoliation, and grafting to produce small trees that mimic the shape and style of mature, full-sized trees.

If you are heading out to The Huntington, The Bonsai Court is definitely worth a visit!

1151 Oxford Road
San Marino, California
Just South of California Drive on the corner of Allen.

Visit 365 Things To Do In Pasadena®  for more fun activities in Pasadena California and surrounding neighborhoods.

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