Over the years people have compared the art of Bonsai to photography. Not because they are particularly similar, but more because of the expensive additional equipment you can buy to complement the basic hobby. Now don’t get me wrong some tools can be extremely helpful, especially if you are a Bonsai beginner, but its important to realize that no one tool will magically turn your tree into an instant master piece.
In my opinion the tools you should seriously think about investing in when working with your Bonsai tree should include a decent pair of tweezers, shears, cutters and maybe a rake. These tools, if used properly can be the difference between a twig like plant, and a jaw dropping beautifully carved Bonsai tree.
Now before you rush out to the nearest Bonsai specialist it may surprise you to learn that the first tool recommended should be the humble pen and paper. Or, maybe a decent computer design program. Think just for a minute how you envisage your Bonsai tree to look and sketch out a design that you feel comfortable can be achieved. Remember your Bonsai tree may be years in the making, so its important to have a decent sketch you can refer too over the months of pruning and sculpting ahead.
Don’t panic you needn’t be too rigid on your approach here, just a general idea is sufficient. You will likely find that your Bonsai tree will grow not entirely how you anticipated. Its what you do to combat this that’s important and this where you can refer to your sketch before making any rash decisions.
With sketch in hand its time to put your design into practice. However, before you start snipping away at your Bonsai tree you need to invest in a set of good quality shears. These will likely be the tool you use most for trimming, sculpting and cutting so its advisable to invest wisely.
When it comes to pruning your Bonsai tree quality certainly counts. Lesser grade tools get blunt very quickly and overtime are likely to damage your tree. Therefore, its certainly advisable to invest in a good quality pair of shears specifically designed for pruning a Bonsai tree. A quality pair that’s lovingly looked after should last a life time, so in the long run your investment will cost less as you would of wisely avoided the inferior types.
Make sure your sheers are very sharp, and that they remain sharp. Pay special attention to imperfect edges. Although they may look well finished to your eye the proof is in the pudding, so insist on checking that the cut is clean before you prune your Bonsai tree. A badly finished tool will produce inferior results as the tree will take longer to heal, and be at a higher risk of infection and disease.
You should also think about investing in some concave cutters for sculpting your Bonsai tree. These are primarily used to remove unwanted branches and will produce a rounded wound. Ironically, a rounded cut will heal quicker than a straight one. The end result will be one that is almost impossible to distinguish that a branch ever existed in the first place.