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 full cascade or Kengai style is really well executed and must have taken some year to achieve. Certainly a little bit of refinement could be undertaken and some more ramification developed but it a nice example as it stands. The measurements on the cascades refer to the length of the cascading branch and the breadth of the branches on that. Length is 50cm and breadth 18cm. the trunk is 2cm. in diam. at the soil level. The hand made ceramic pot measures 16x20cm. There will not be many bonsai like this available as it is not grown commercially anywhere and will only come from an enthusiasts garden.