Fashion & Lifestyle

Cape Town Bonsai Festival returns to Company’s Garden

The City’s Recreation and Park Department was proud to host the 10th Annual Bonsai Festival, in partnership with the Cape Regional Association of Bonsai this past weekend. The two-day festival returned to the Company’s Garden, with a spectacular exhibition of bonsai trees open to the public to view.
The purpose of the bonsai exhibition is to raise awareness about the importance of growing trees in cities and to encourage first-time participants to learn how to grow trees in bonsai style.
The annual event gives all bonsai clubs and nurseries in the Western Cape an opportunity to display trees grown by their members in a competition.
Bonsai is a Japanese recreational art of growing trees in small pots and shaping them for beautification. The event was attended by the Consul General of Japan to Cape Town, Mr Jiro Nishimura.
The festival attracted a large crowd of visitors who took advantage of the good weather and free demonstrations offered by the experts. This signifies a successful return of the event to the Company’s Garden after two years of being limited to a virtual event due to the pandemic.
Also popular with attendees were the pruning and shaping demonstrations offered by locals recognised as masters in the bonsai fraternity.
Visitors were delighted to be able to purchase their very own tree as part of a starter-kit, with a container and tools to take home for cultivation. By signing up to the nearest club in their neighbourhood, newcomers will now have the support of a community of bonsai masters and other enthusiasts to guide them with useful tips offered at club meetings, held generally once a week.
Urbanisation requires a shift in perceptions on environmental conservation. Society needs to consider new ways of planting trees in order to sustain life with limited availability of green spaces.
‘The exhibition could not have been at a better venue than the Company’s Garden, as it is a well-known park enjoyed by thousands of residents and visitors annually. The exhibition is a celebration of trees and nature and puts the spotlight on the importance of conservation and protecting biodiversity and green open spaces in the urban environment. The art of growing bonsai has so many advantages – from developing discipline and respect for nature to learning a hobby that is relaxing and self-fulfilling.
‘Sport and recreational activities have historically brought South Africans of all races, ages and ethnicity together. When communities engage in positive pastimes together it creates a sense of family and belonging. It is through sport and playing together that we make new connections, grow and learn from each other,’ said the City’s Mayoral Committee Member for Community Services and Health, Councillor Patricia Van der Ross.
Below is the list of winning members in the following categories:
>60cm tall: Brett Simon from Oyama Bonsai Kai Club
40 – 60cm: Brett Simon from Oyama Bonsai Kai Club
20 – 40cm: Mark Polson, Blaauwberg Bonsai Kai
Less than 20cm: Hennie Nel, Cape Bonsai Kai

Source: City Of Cape Town