Building A Bonsai Garden by Mike Jones

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My thanks to Mike Jones of for use of this excellent article showing the building a bonsai display area in his garden in the UK

"If I keep a green bough in my heart, the singing bird will come."

Chinese Proverb

Where we currently live, the garden was a bit on the huge side so it was ideal to create a dedicated Bonsai Display area.

Starting with just the timber, some post-crete, numerous clamps, a jig saw, circular saw and a pair of steps I managed to get the base structure up on the first day. I’d fiddled for days on paper, well, the back of a cornflake packet actually. I’m no designer, I just knew roughly what I wanted. The rest would follow …or so I hoped. I used string lines and a level mostly.

Digging out the post holes was a breeze and each mound of concrete is rounded above the ground level to prevent rot ever setting in. An old ‘mucker’ of mine … Maurice Stone, taught me how to dig post holes properly and so I put into practice what he passed on to me.

“Straight edges my boy, none of this rounded malarkey, and just 130-150mm gap all round the centralised post. Sides should be vertical with cut outs sunk into the walls randomly after a depth of around 200mm. That way the concrete runs into the channels and your post will never fall over or rot, as long as you get the finished concrete above ground level.

Each hole was done in a flash, and levelled with wood from top to top so the height was virtually the same. The lorry load arrived and it took me a couple of hours once craned off to sort into the sizes I had ordered. panels I made up as a close board and the trellis is the only part pre-made.

The following shows it from start to finish. I’ve just recently made changes to some of the stands. I was lucky to get a large lot of Beech so created some black stands for the larger trees.

bonsai garden fence

build garden

garden build

stone for bonsai garden

bonsai display

bonsai display

At this stage, it was pretty much finished (this was back in 2000) and the pictures on the following page were taken over the last few years.

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