The Jezo spruce or Yezo spruce (Picea jezoensis or Picea yezoensis) is a large evergreen tree growing to 30-50 m tall and with a trunk diameter of up to 2 m. It is native to northeast Asia, from the mountains of central Japan and the Changbai Mountains on the China-North Korea border, north to eastern Siberia, including the Sikhote-Alin, Kuril Islands, Sakhalin and Kamchatka. It is found in cold but humid temperate rain forests, and nowhere does its range extend more than 400 km from the Pacific Ocean.
Bonsai (盆栽, lit. plantings in tray, from bon, a tray or low-sided pot and sai, a planting or plantings, About this sound pronunciation (help·info)) is a Japanese art form using miniature trees grown in containers. Similar practices exist in other cultures, including the Chinese tradition of penjing from which the art originated, and the miniature living landscapes of Vietnamese hòn non bộ. The Japanese tradition dates back over a thousand years, and has its own aesthetics and terminology.
“Bonsai” is a Japanese pronunciation of the earlier Chinese term penzai. A “bon” is a tray-like pot typically used in bonsai culture. The word bonsai is often used in English as an umbrella term for all miniature trees in containers or pots. This article focuses on bonsai as defined in the Japanese tradition.
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