I love bonsai. The real stuff, not those little landscaping junipers they sell as "bonsai." True bonsai are *trees*, miniaturized.
The difficulty in keeping them is that you have to provide a tree's environment. They're not house plants. That will kill them. They should really be kept outside - yes, even in inclement weather! If it gets excessively cold for the species of tree they are, you can wrap the pot, or provide some shelter... but they shouldn't really be brought inside for more than a day or two. Imagine: classic bonsai are sometimes potted in fairly large containers. Do you suppose those hundred-pounders are transported in and out for cold snaps?!? lol
I especially love the little forest-type plantings. I don't recall the name... I like the fruiting or floral types too, but it can be really tough to find ones which have tiny fruit or flowers. I saw an awesome pyracantha one time. A fellow at a local flea market, of all places, has one I'm totally enamored of - a Bald Cypress. Gorgeous. Only about 2 feet tall. I can't remember how old he said it was... it was an heirloom, in any case.
If you just want the *look* of a bonsai, you can buy all sorts of tree seeds - as others have mentioned - on Amazon. If you REALLY want to drive yourself crazy, look at the established bonsai for sale on eBay! omg I've never thought buying the seed would be the best option, because you really want to see the trunk structure of the seedling before you start all that hard work! I suppose, if you bought lots of seeds, you'd have a better variety to choose from. Those which wouldn't work out for bonsai could still be grown up a bit and sold as trees.
Interesting thread! Thanks for the ideas.
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I used to have a bonsai juniper, a full cascade with a curled base. It was beautiful...till the dog ate it. They are a lot of work. Since the container is so small you have to be very careful about watering and feeding.
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