Photo – Pixabay / Tumisu

Finding the perfect format for your bonsai pot!

Claude Savard

Often, many enthusiasts purchase pots without considering certain essential criteria. They make their choice based on their aesthetic preferences but fail to take into account the basic criteria that will enhance their bonsai.

I know I’m repeating myself, but this question remains just as relevant

Will this pot truly showcase my bonsai ?

And often, the answer is yes. Many people buy bonsai pots simply because they find them beautiful. It’s perfect if you collect pots or if you want a wide selection to never be caught off guard. But believe me, most of these people never have the perfect pot in their collection and always end up buying another one for their bonsai.

To find the ideal format for your bonsai, it’s important to have knowledge about the type of tree you have.
Is it a masculine or femenine gender ?
Is it a conifer or a deciduous tree?
If you’re asking yourself these questions or if you’re unsure, I invite you to read this article here (insert article link).

By considering these criteria, you can choose a pot that will enhance the natural beauty of your bonsai and create a visual harmony between the tree and its pot.

The rule of thirds

It is essential not to overlook this question as it holds great importance. First and foremost, it’s crucial to understand what is referred to as « the rule of thirds.

This rule is used in the composition of images such as painting, photography, or drawing.

Never forget that the presentation of your bonsai is an integral part of its overall image. A beautiful presentation must adhere to this rule. The grand masters of the bonsai world use it during major exhibitions to showcase their trees. You can also apply this rule in harmony with the structure of your bonsai, your pot, your table, and the entire tokonoma arrangement.

In an upcoming article, I will explain how to design the structure of your bonsai using the rule of thirds.

To understand this rule, it’s quite simple—its name speaks volumes about it. Take an image and divide its length into three equal parts, as well as its height. This will give you two horizontal lines and two vertical lines.

This rule is employed in the composition of various forms of imagery, such as painting, photography, or drawing. In an upcoming article, I will explain how to design the structure of your bonsai using the rule of thirds.

How can this rule help me find the right pot size for my bonsai?

Take the height of your bonsai, divide it by three, and then multiply the result by two. I understand that this may seem unclear, so let’s take a concrete example. Let’s say your tree is 35 cm tall, from the top of the root ball to the top of the tree.

Photo – Pixabay – ilyessuti / Photo montage – CSCeramique

To find the appropriate pot size, we’ll apply the rule. First, divide 35 by three, which gives you approximately 11.67. Then, multiply this result by two, giving you approximately 23.34. Therefore, based on this rule, a suitable pot size for your bonsai would be around 23 cm in diameter

Photo – Pixabay – ilyessuti / Photo montage – CSCeramique
How to determine the height of the pot?

Well, let’s move on to the second measurement. This one is simpler. Take the diameter of your bonsai at its base, also known as the nebari. If it measures 5 cm wide, your pot should have a maximum height of about 5 cm on the outside, including the feet.

Photo – Pixabay – ilyessuti / Photo montage – CSCeramique

It’s important to note that this rule is a general guideline, and there may be other factors to consider when selecting a pot, such as the width and depth of the root system. Additionally, personal preferences and aesthetic considerations can also play a role in choosing the right pot for your bonsai. So, while this rule provides a starting point, it’s always a good idea to consult with experienced bonsai enthusiasts or experts for further guidance.

In this example, the diameter of the tree is much larger than the height of the pot. This tree is undergoing maintenance and is likely in a bonsai pot for several decades, indicating that its root system is very compact. As a result, the owner can afford to use a shorter pot to give the illusion of a more massive tree.