The genus Cotoneaster contains many common garden shrubs and that in itself should indicate that it is a plant that is very comfortable in UK conditions making it very easy to keep, grow and develop as a bonsai subject.
The Cotoneaster species range from prostrate, creeping shrubs, often these will have very small leaves making them great for particularly the smaller size classes of bonsai, to small trees with perhaps larger leaves. It also includes deciduous and evergreen species. A particular attraction of all the Cotoneasters is that they have very small white or pink tinged flowers followed by mainly red berries. Good autumn colour is also an attractive feature. All in all good bonsai subjects.
We have recently purchased part of a collection from a long time and experienced member of the Willowbog community who is having to seriously reduce his collection. Amongst the trees are a number of beautifully created Cotoneaster bonsai, several are either root over or root on rock styles, all are well done, are healthy and can only improve in the right hands. Mostly they are in the small or shohin size category.
This really is a shohin bonsai, a really cute wee tree. Quite hard to categorise the style, is it trying to be a half cascade or is it a windswept, anyway the relationship between the volume of branching is quite in balance with that little trunk. The spread is 20cm. and the height 17cm. The trunk is 1.5cm. in diam. and at soil level the root spread is 7cm. The nice quality Chinese unglazed ceramic pot measures 13x9cm. It can pretty much go either right or left so that’s quite useful when putting a shohin composition together.