Tag Archives: bonsai ceramics

One Pot To Rule Them All

One Pot To Rule Them All

Exterior dimensions 36.5cm x 33cm x 9cm (18½in x 13in x 3½in).  The lip is 7.5cm (3in) on each side!

Many of you might know that I have a strange fascination with pots that have exceptionally large lips.  I think I may have found the  Mother Of All Pots (with a large lip that is)!  This pot by far has the largest lip that I have ever seen.  It’s taken me about a year before I got my hands on one and it was worth the wait.  In this short post I’m going to share some pictures and a description of this pot.

Here is a top view of the pot.  There isn’t much patina on this pot.  It was found in a flower shop and has probably been sitting on the shelf for many years.  Looking at the lines and texture of the pot, it’s apparent that it was hand made and not mold made.

The underside.  Unfortunately there is a piece that broke off on the bottom right.  The good thing is that there are no cracks and that you can’s see the broken area from the top.

Just in case you didn’t notice the lip…

This pot was made by Maruhei-in and is Japanese.  One of the cool things about this pot is that there are three chops in three different locations.  This small chop is on the inside of the pot.

This chop and signature is on the underside of the pot.

The third, a small chop on the side of the pot on the outside.  Many times in Japan, instead of writing, “Maru,” they use a circle instead.  Maru is the word for circle.  So in this chop, you have the, “Maru (circle),” and the kanji for, “Hei,” on the inside.  Put it all together and you get Maruhei.

Mr. Tanaka too has one these pots but the chop on the bottom is different thought still made by Maruhei.  We’re not 100 percent sure which chop is older thought Mr. Tanaka feels that my pot is the older one.

The 10,000 Dollar Question?

Now what would you put in this pot?  What kind of tree and what kind of tree style would work in this pot?

I know the first thing that normally comes to people’s mind is what you, “can not,” put in this pot.  Try not to think about that and really explore the possibilities of, “can,” and you may be surprised to what might work.  To quote Mr. Tanaka, “There are no real rules as to what kind of pot looks good with what kind of tree.  The only real rule is balance and the overall aesthetics of the pairing.”  Since all of our perceptions of what, “looks good,” is different from person to person we can really go wild with all the pots out there.  Having said that, this higher concept of pot matching is coming from a professional with a great deal of experience.  For those that aren’t as experience, ask other Bonsai people for their opinions and keep your mind open to them all.  Try to understand what they are saying and at the end, do what feels right to you.  New trends in pot to tree matching are occurring all the time.  That’s what makes it fun and fresh.

Study, study, study and keep learning.  That helps too. ;o)

Please share your thoughts in what might go well in this pot in the comment section below.

Thanks for reading!

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