Monday, January 10, 2011

Shaping nature or letting it run wild

I currently have four books out of the library. Three are about bonsai. I have been reading about the ideal shapes, and how to use wire, pruning, and re-potting in order to work toward creating bonsai trees that match one of the shapes that has been deemed ideal.

In contrast, in The Urban Homestead, Kelly Coyne and Erik Knutzen say (on page 40):
...bread dough made from wild yeasts and given time to raise slowly is a living thing. It is not cookie dough. Real bread dough crackles and pulses between your hands, full of invisible life. You want that kind of quality in your garden: full of crackling, invisible life and secret happenings. There's bugs in the soil, bees in the flowers, roots being formed, compost breaking down, all sorts of things you can't see going on, but you feel it. This kind of state comes in one way only -- by you doing as little as possible. When leaves fall, let them lay. They're mulching!....Are you getting the idea that your garden is not going to look like Martha Stewart's garden? Good.
I prefer the approach taken in The Urban Homestead. I think bonsai is not really for me.

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