Bonsai Styles: Literati Style

The Literati were a group of ancient Chinese scholars, their philosophy was one of simplicity. Nowdays they might be called 'minimalists'. In their art they would use as few brushstrokes as possible to convey the form of a tree, that tree generally had a long flowing trunk.


Choosing a pot for a literati can be difficult, you will need to bear in mind the top of the tree may not be over the pot and this may cause it to topple over, select a good sized pot, or tie it down.

Choose a pot that the top of the tree, were it a seperate tree would look good in.

A literati Black Pine.

Here we see a pine in the literati style. Its displayed with an accent planting and a suiseki. unfortunately little thought has been given to their placement, which appears cramped. In a more structured display this would not happen as the Accent plant and Suiseki would be further away from the tree.

Literati tend to be conifers as they naturally grow in exposed areas.

The tree will need to be tied into the pot when repotted and in many cases the pot will need to be supported, ot tied down to stop it overbalancing or being affected by wind.

Allen. C. Roffey 20:17 14/04/2018