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        The word niwaki in Japanese means "garden tree". This term concerns any tree that needs the guidance of a gardener for pruning, as discrete as that may be. The priority is to give a mature look to these trees that obviously young subjects do not have. Using various techniques, the gardener will therefore seek to densify the foliage in some places, or lighten it (according to the essence of the tree). In order for the tree to appear older than it actually is, the trunk and branches are cleared and spanned horizontally.

Niwaki creation is also called "Japanese pruning" and is an ancient art, based on the basic beliefs of Shinto worship, reported from the 12th century by Zen Buddhist gardener monks, and based on a deep respect for nature in reverence to its beauty. In the garden, niwaki evoke the impression left on vegetation by natural elements such as wind, snow or freezing ... and also the grazing of animals. Beyond the classic niwaki and its domed masses of dense vegetation, there are many other types of Japanese pruning. Compact and spherical tamamono or large dome shaped entoh kei, compact and organic karikomi, linear commonly called "trays" or "levels", with cascading branches ...

In practice, the Japanese pruning requires humility, patience, imagination and the ability to anticipate the result in time. Many years of work are needed to create these "fleshy" masses of vegetation. The trunk can be worked in a variety of styles, with different shapes. The masses of vegetation are always formed to be directed outwards and then pruned regularly to obtain increasingly dense tufts, or versa, increasingly light, or transparent vegetation on the branches.

Since their arrival in Europe, these niwaki were called "garden bonsai" by the nursery profession, which is an inappropriate term because they totally differ from bonsai cultivation in the way that the roots remain intact (even if sometimes, they are dug around). There are only visual similarities, based on the criteria of the Japanese aesthetic. There is the well known "cloud" pruning, which is only a Japanese-inspired pruning, but not the real and authentic niwaki.

japanese pruning courses

       We offer a range of training sessions in order to reveal your creativity ... Whatever your personal aspirations, there are SIX courses, open to anyone wishing to learn and practice of Japanese pruning for niwaki creations.

. Course "Japanese pruning basics" on 3 days (20 hours) - Niwaki Chokukanshitate style - straight trunk and guying (fukinaoshi process)

. Course "Advanced Japanese pruning" on 2 days (15 hours) - Niwaki Takanshitate style - multiple trunk

. Course "Advanced Japanese pruning" on 2 days (15 hours) - Niwaki Kyokukanshitate style - sinuous trunk and pines

. Course "Advanced Japanese pruning" on 2 days (15 hours) - Niwaki Sokanshitate style - double trunk and maples

. Course "Advanced Japanese pruning" on 2 days (15 hours) - Niwaki Sukashi-sentei style - transparency pruning on deciduous trees

. Course "Advanced Japanese pruning" on 1 day (8 hours) - Bushes Tamamono & Karikomi style - spherical and organic

You have all the courses described in detail here.

e-learning platform - Study tour in Japan - Japanese pruning and gardens - Frederique DUMAS - www.japanese-garden-institute.com


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