"The Dwarf Trees of Japan" from The Home Library of Entertainment Instruction and Amusement

      "The Dwarf Trees of Japan" (1902):

      Gardeners in Japan display astonishing art.  The plum, which is a great favourite, is so trained and cultivated that the blossoms are as big as those of dahlias.  They have gradually succeeded in dwarfing the fig, plum and cherry trees, and the vine to a stature so diminutive as scarcely to be credited by a foreigner, and yet those dwarf trees are covered by blossoms and leaves.  Maylon [sic], whose work on Japan was published at Amsterdam in 1830, states that the Dutch agent of Commerce in Naganei [Nagasaki] was offered a snuff box, one inch in thickness and three inches long, in which grew a fig [sic] tree, a bamboo and a plum tree in bloom.  But it is especially members of the coniferous family that are thus dwarfed.  Much patience is needed, and there are trees 200 years old, or more, which scarcely reach a foot in height.  Such a tree can be bought for $8.00 to $10.00, and it is marvelous how a tree that needed care during a time of two centuries can be sold for such a trifle.  Where does the compensation for care and work come in?  1


1      Meek, Thomas Sheppard  The Home Library of Entertainment Instruction and Amusement; Detroit, Michigan: Bradley-Garretson Company,1902.   Seven instructive books in one volume: Fireside Gems, The Model Speaker, Games and Sports, Songs, Etiquette, Wonderful Things, and Biography.  Per http://www.antiqbook.com/boox/colbas/16053.shtml.  "Bonsai Note -- 1903," Bonsai, BCI, Vol. XVI, No. 5, June 1977, pg. 159.  "From Edith Kenzie."  1903 edition?  A paragraph in the "Facts about Woods and Trees" section.  The two mentions of "fig" should probably be "fir."

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