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Tweet of the Week #124: Learn How To Grow Mushroom Bonsai

Bonsai can include more than just trees!

By 3 min read

For centuries, the art of bonsai—cultivating miniature trees—was limited to Japanese nobles. Today, it’s the perfect hobby to unwind from our busy lives and to meditate.

The word bonsai means “planted in a (shallow) tray.” The dwarf trees, which come in different styles and sizes, are styled to achieve an aesthetic effect for the sole purpose of contemplation. Cultivating a bonsai takes incredible patience and care. So when their owners spot a mushroom on their beloved tiny tree, they tend to panic. Fungi are relatively harmless but often a sign of rotting wood.

However, for some bonsai masters, growing mushrooms is art too. Japanese user @kinocorium promotes the technique of cultivating fungi from logs in a terrarium. Online, they have shared beautiful creations using glass cups and bottles, and even aquariums!

You can explore this very poetic universe on Kinocorium’s blog.

A really fun-gi




“How to grow a mushroom bonsai.

When nameko’s umbrella-shaped cap opens, it becomes this splendid mushroom. Did you know that?”

If you mush

Nameko, also known as a butterscotch mushroom, is a small, amber-colored mushroom that grows in clusters. It’s very popular in Japan, and often an ingredient in miso soup. You can find a more detailed step-by-step tutorial on how to grow mushrooms from logs on YouTube.

However, the whole process takes about ten months. Patience always has been an essential part of bonsai art!

Using こんな, そんな and あんな

Sonna kakko de deru no!?

We’ve explained a bit about the Japanese demonstrative pronoun system here. These three demonstrative pronouns are based on the distance from the speaker, the listener and the thing referred to:

  • これ: this one (close to the speaker)
  • それ: that one (close to the listener)
  • あれ: that one over there (far from both the speaker and the listener)

Based on these three demonstrative pronouns, you’ll find the demonstrative adjectives この, その and あの, which work with nouns.

  • このほん: “This book (near the speaker).”
  • その本: “That book (near the listener).”
  • あの本: “That book (far).”

Moreover, こんな (konna), そんな (sonna) and あんな (anna) are similar to この, その and あの, but they’re more intense and emotional. They convey the speaker’s judgment or feeling about the thing or situation. These demonstrative adjectives work with nouns, adjectives and verbs, and convey meanings such as “something like that,” “this sort of…,” “such…” and “like that.”


With こんな, which means “something like this,” “this sort of,” ” you react to something very close to you or a fairly recent event. For instance, you react to something you’re seeing on the news.

You react to something close to you or to something very recent, for instance when watching the news.

  • こんなことになるなんて: “I can’t believe it happened! (such a thing happened and it’s recent)


そんな allows you to react to something that’s a bit far from you. It’s also perfect to react to something that has just been said in the conversation. You’ll often hear そんな as an interjection that conveys shock and surprise. You can loosely translate it as “oh my” or “oh my God!”

  • そんな格好かっこうで出るの = You’re going out like that? [wearing that sort of outfit]?


Finally, あんな is used when reacting to something far in distance or time.

  • あんなところかせない: “I can’t let you go to such place!”


Japanese Romaji English
盆栽ぼんさい bonsai Bonsai
キノコ kinoko Mushroom
つくかた tsukurikata Way of making
ナメコ nameko Nameko
立派りっぱ rippa Splendide
になる ninaru Become
shiru Know

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