guidelines for accent plants

jquast

Shohin
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Does anyone have any guidelines or advice for selecting an appropriate accent plant? I have a Hornbeam in a blue oval pot that I will be showing at Midori's show next month.

Here is a photo of the tree that I'm showing which has since leafed out.

http://bonsainut.com/forums/showthread.php?p=62267#post62267

Thanks in advance for any advice.

jeff
 

kakejiku

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最後のクマシデの添え草ですが、秋を感じるような草物で、草丈が低くて数年以上小鉢で持ち込んだものがよいです。
鉢は丸鉢でできるだけ浅い鉢に植えてあるものが良いです。
そして主木の大きさとバランスのとれたもので、主木の力が10に対して1〜2ぐらいの大きさのものを用い、主木と拮抗しないようにします。地板は薄いもので丸か楕円のものを使用し、正方形や長方形などの角ものは避けましょう。
主木には平卓が良く合います。(高さが10cm〜15cmまでぐらいの卓)

This is what a Sensei wrote and will translate to the best of my ability.
You should go with something that has the feel of a fall plant, and the height should be short and less than the height of a rice plant's height. It should be allowed to grow for several years in a small pot. It would be good to put it in a round pot that is shallow. You should aim to have balance between the main tree and the accent. For example, a ratio of size would be 10 for the main tree and 1-2 for the accent plant would express well. Don't allow the accent planting to compete or antagonize the main tree. It would be good to use a Jiita that is narrowly cut in a round or elliptical shape, and avoid ones that are square or rectangular. The main tree would look good on a Heitaku that is about 10-15 cm in height.

Didn't exactly give you a name for a plant, but Susuki? I will also try to see some in his book for the fall months.
 
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just an idea, i think stuff like this, maybe without the rock, looks nice with an older tree, i like to imagine lifting a section out from under the tree when im thinking of accents, a light pot though, to compliment that awesome bark..
 
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As has been said, it's difficult to slap one together in a month that looks established. If you rush it, you'll likely just kill the plant and have something that only lasts the show. That being said, I'll echo the comment about needing something that expresses the season.

You might do better to consider an object as a companion rather than a kusamono. Then nothing dies. :D

V
 

jk_lewis

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Try to get a type of plant that might grow naturally alongside (or under) the hornbeam. Hornbeam like to grow in damp locations, so a small fern or rush might be nice.
 

kakejiku

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Finally got around to formalizing some of the plants for Fall themed displays. Please be aware that these are ideas for scroll images, but possibly some of the plants could work for accent plants....If I butchered the common names and botanical names I apologize in advance because this was for a different project and I was primarily concerned about the translation of Kanji into Japanese and then into English.

笑蓉 ふよう? Cotton Rose (Hibiscus mutabiis)
菊 きく Chrysanthemum
竜胆 りんどう、
りゅうたん Bellflower Gentiana scabra
桔梗 ききょう Chinese bellflower Platycodon grandiflorum
萩 はぎ Bush Clover Lespedeza
芒 すすき Japanese Pampas Grass
女郎花 おみなえし Golden Lace Patrinia scabiosifolia
 

jquast

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Midori held it's 50th anniversary show today and I had my first tree in a display this year. The accent plant is a Carex (type of sedge) that has started to go to seed which actually got lots of complements today.

Thanks to all for the advice and suggestions.

jeff
 

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bonsaiTOM

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I would say that the sedge works very well in your display.
Congrats on your first (of many) entry into the bonsai 'show' business.
Very nice hornbeam!
 

jquast

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Nice Jeff!

Thanks Paul and Tom for the compliments!

Kathy Shaner critiqued each tree in the show and she said that the accent properly showed the season that the tree was being displayed in. Her suggetions for improvement were to change the pot (different color and one with more design and curves) to one that better shows the maturity and detail in the lines of the trunk and to pull in some of the foliage closer to the trunk.
 

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