Everybody has heard of the Bonsai tree but very few people know anything about the history of the miniature shrub or where the tradition came from.
Bonsai is a Japanese term which, in its native language, translates to mean tray gardening. This term describes exactly what bonsai is as it is a tree which is grown in a small pot or tub enabling it to be kept indoors. These trees are not always genetically predisposed to be small and so they are kept this way through careful pruning. The ability to care for a bonsai tree, keeping it small and healthy, is an art form in itself. The trees are commonly pruned in to an aesthetically pleasing shape, another reason why they are seen as works of art and not just as plants.