Bonsai are nothing more than ordinary trees grown in special containers, These are trained to remain small, mimicking larger versions in nature.
Although it can be done (by experts), it is more difficult to cultivate bonsai trees indoors. They range in height, from a couple inches to 3 feet and are trained in various ways by careful pruning of the branches and roots, occasional repotting, pinching of new growth, and by wiring both the branches and trunk into the desired shape. When styling bonsai trees, you should look carefully at the tree’s natural characteristics for help in choosing suitable bonsai pruning methods. Bonsai styles vary but often consist of formal upright, informal upright, slanting, broom form, windswept, cascade, semi-cascade and twin trunk. With formal upright, informal upright and slanting styles, the number three is significant.
Formal upright – With formal upright, the tree should be evenly spaced when viewed on all sides. Slanting – With the slanting bonsai style, the trunk usually curves or twists, angled to the right or left, and the branches are trained to balance this effect.
Broom form – The broom form mimics deciduous tree growth in nature and can be formal (which resembles an upturned Japanese broom) or informal. Windswept – Windswept bonsai is styled with all of its branches to one side of the trunk, as if windblown. Unlike other bonsai styles, both cascade and semi-cascade are positioned in the center of the pot. Cascade bonsai – In the cascading bonsai style, the growing tip reaches below the base of the pot.
Twin-trunk form – In the twin-trunk form, two upright trunks emerge on the same roots, dividing into two separate trunks. Now that you know some of the bonsai basics and popular bonsai pruning methods, you are well on your way in learning how to start a bonsai tree for your home. Rosetta Mullein features beautiful spikes of cherry red flowers with white anthers rising above the foliage from mid spring to mid summer, which are most effective when planted in groupings. Rosetta Mullein is an herbaceous perennial with tall flower stalks held atop a low mound of foliage. This perennial will require occasional maintenance and upkeep, and should be cut back in late fall in preparation for winter. Rosetta Mullein will grow to be about 12 inches tall at maturity extending to 30 inches tall with the flowers, with a spread of 18 inches.
She believes passionately in outdoor education, as she feels that children are not encouraged by the current education system to be ‘children’ or to get wet, muddy and have fun.
Laura is a very experienced Forest School leader as well as an Art Therapist – both of which she loves doing.  She is passionate about Forest schools and Wild Learning and considers herself very lucky to be able to work with such fabulous children and their amazing imaginations out in the woods. In her personal life, Laura is married with two teenage daughters, and her hobbies include horse riding, gardening and spending time in the great outdoors.


Tom is an enthusiastic outdoor practitioner with youth groups, with experience in volunteer project leadership and conservation land management.  Tom has been a Forest School support worker for a local council and an instructor at an environmental field studies centre, and has helped many young people achieve their John Muir and Duke of Edinburgh awards through facilitating practical work days and outdoor exploration with the London Wildlife Trust and the Trust for Conservation Volunteers.
A lover of British wildlife and the great outdoors, Tom enjoys adventurous activities such as rock wall climbing and archery as well as a bit of den building and woodland craft. She loves exploring the woods through the eyes of Wild Learning kids, and learning odd facts from them. Claire lives in a little wooden caravan in the woods and cook on an open fire, so a lot of her life involves sticks and fire! Claire is a Forest School leader , a passionate environmentalist and likes eating hearty stew around a fire with good company, playing old tunes on my fiddle and reading stories. Sally says, “I have loved the outdoors from childhood when I had my own vegetable patch and helped pick  runner beans, tomatoes and Bramley apples from our garden. Sally has been an Early Years teacher for 15 years, starting late in life but loving the everyday challenges posed. Sue camps, carves, sings and plays music and spends as much time as possible out in the wilds, preferably with a lovely fire, good company and something to cook! Also, depending on the style, an appropriate pot must be selected, keeping in mind that most bonsai are positioned off-center. Branches are grouped in threes, a third of the way up the trunk and trained to grow to a third of the tree’s total height. Normally a third of the trunk, which is completely straight and upright, should display an even taper and placement of the branches generally forms a pattern. It is also the most common and can be used for most species, including Japanese maple, beech, and various conifers. Slanting is achieved by wiring the trunk into position or forced this way by placing it into the pot at an angle. Both trunks should share similar shapes and characteristics; however, one trunk should be noticeably taller than the other, with branches on both trunks creating a triangular shape. Its relatively coarse texture can be used to stand it apart from other garden plants with finer foliage. Deer don't particularly care for this plant and will usually leave it alone in favor of tastier treats. Its foliage tends to remain dense right to the ground, not requiring facer plants in front. It is very adaptable to both dry and moist locations, and should do just fine under typical garden conditions. It is not officially recognized as winter-hardy in our zone 3, however, there is a strong liklihood that it will survive winter.
Julie works in our back office, managing the business side of things, our development, and is responsible for making sure that everything goes smoothly for the Forest School leaders and the children. She is an expert organizer (which she describes as ‘being good at being bossy!’) and keeps the rest of the team on the straight and narrow.


Perhaps Tom’s proudest achievement is the taming of the much-coveted elder stick snake (Sambucus Arbor Serpentes) which often makes appearances in abundance at Wild Learning exhibition stands across Surrey.
The obvious career progression was to qualify as a Forest School Leader, so this is what she did, along the way working as and assistant play group leader and a primary school helper. When she’s not in the woods or walking her dogs she can usually be found riding or looking after her menagerie of 2 horses, 2 pigs, 3 dogs 1 cat, 11 tortoises, and umpteen chickens.
She is an apprentice woodlander, coppicer and roundwood timber framer, with woodsman Ben Law of ‘Grand Designs’ fame.
Her dream is to get children involved in the management of woodlands and help them learn to make things out of wood including green buildings and care for the wildlife of the woods. Branches do not face the front until the top third of the tree, and are horizontal or slightly drooping. An important feature of slanting is that its roots appear to anchor the tree to prevent falling. To create this style, a tall, narrow bonsai pot is required as well as a tree that is well adapted to this type of training. It grows at a fast rate, and tends to be biennial, meaning that it puts on vegetative growth the first year, flowers the second, and then dies. It is considered to be drought-tolerant, and thus makes an ideal choice for a low-water garden or xeriscape application. Occasionally she is persuaded out of the office to help on one of our exhibition stands – but she does demand that it is warm and not too wet!
This year she has  been learning how to use billhooks, axes, saws, power tools, chainsaws and chisels and have had a lot of practice lighting fires and collecting and moving sticks and logs. Did you know beetles have trouble packing their wings up after flight – it can take ten attempts to get it right. The trunk should be wired to spill over the edge of the pot with emphasis on keeping the branches even, but horizontal.
However, this species tends to self-seed and will thereby endure for years in the garden if allowed.
She’s learning how to make things including exciting environmentally friendly buildings from local sustainable wood.
Therefore, bonsais should be checked on a daily basis to determine whether they require watering.



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