Trees ranging from zero to several decades old
Mr. Kazuo Manabe of Bishouen is the second generation of the garden. He took over the business after retiring from his company.
While many farmers in Shikoku Chuo City produce only large bonsai, Bishouen actively produces small bonsai as well. Mishouen is one of the few places in Shikoku that grows seedlings from seeds, or small seedlings that sprout naturally in the mountains and are made into pots.
True Goyomatsu Bonsai made with time and effort
Every year, he collects seeds of Goyomatsu and continues to produce bonsai from seedlings. In Takamatsu City, Kagawa Prefecture, which is the neighboring production area of Ehime, they mainly produce grafted Goyomatsu, which is a Goyomatsu connected to a Black Pine graft. The Black Pine is more robust and grows faster, so it is possible to produce strong, easy-to-grow goyomatsu seedlings by using it as the base tree. However, here in Shikokuchuo, they insist on growing their own Goyomatsu and continue to produce natural Goyomatsu grown from seeds, even if it takes many years and much time. They are highly regarded by bonsai enthusiasts as genuine bonsai.
Precious pine trees born in nature at hand
When the pine cones that grow naturally in the Akaishi Mountains fall to the ground, the scattered seeds germinate and grow into young pines at the base of the pine trees. The slow-growing Goyomatsu are only a few centimeters long even after a few years, but the naturally grown pines are of very high quality and are very valuable. We collect them and grow them in pots for many more years to make them into mountain pine trees. However, there are many cases where the saplings do not grow well due to environmental changes when they are brought down from the mountains to the villages. Also, the path to reach the native Goyomatsu in the deep mountains is steep, and collecting them is extremely difficult. It is not hard to imagine that the number of these trees is decreasing every year.
The passion to continue producing the difficult Yamatori Goyomatsu is probably not ordinary.
Carefully nurturing with love
Bishouen produces from seeds. It takes a long time to produce a bonsai, especially in the field of bonsai production, where it is common to work for several years or even decades. It is the enthusiasm for bonsai that allows them to persevere in production.
With the recent changes in needs due to housing conditions and the aging of the population, the demand for small saplings is also increasing due to the popularity of small bonsai. Bishouen is not only a bonsai garden consisting of large bonsai, but also small bonsai, which is a good place to find your first bonsai.
Bishou Garden Kazuo Manabe
- 2811 Ueno, Doi-cho, Shikokuchuo City, Ehime Prefecture