Rocky Mountain Juniper, Kataoka

Bonsai Detail

Brief Description
Rocky Mountain juniper, also called Rocky Mountain red cedar, is one of three species of Native American junipers most prized as bonsai subjects; the other two species being Sierra juniper and California juniper. As the name implies, its primary range is in the Rocky Mountains, but a small population exists much farther west, in the San Juan Islands of Washington State. This old specimen was collected as a natural dwarf at an elevation of about 8,000 feet near Raymond, Colorado. The late artist Robert Kataoka collected the tree and began training it in 1964, orienting it to show off a large piece of dead wood, and keeping a broadly rounded, shrub-like crown. In 1997, PRBC curator Dave De Groot restyled the tree using a new front and a single leader. In 2015 curator Aarin Packard, restyled the tree, changing it back to its historic front, to show off the natural deadwood while changing the angle of the tree.
Common Name
Rocky Mountain Juniper
Scientific Name
Juniperus scopulorum
Robert Kataoka