I am seriously thinking about buying a bonsai and have an idea or two of what I am looking for (as far as style(physical look)/actual look of the plant) but I'm not sure what exact species is good for my climate and what I am looking for as far as style.
Here is what I was hoping for...
~Something fairly small, perhaps the size of a hand? or a little bit bigger, but not too much.
~I think I want something with leaves that resembles an American Maple or even Elm Trees. ( I recently moved across the world to Australia and am a little home sick! it would be nice to think of home when I look at my bonsai)
~I know 90% of bonsai has to do with the over all feel of the plant and its surrounding, but would it be impossible (aesthetically) to have white gravel/sand near or around the base of my bonsai ? This is to say I have my bonsai as the centerpiece, withing a larger pot with white gravel/sand not actually touching the plant or soil itself.
~During the winter (in Melbourne australia) the coldest it gets at night is about 6-12c in the winter and in the summer it can get up to a staggering 35-40c+ at about mid-day.
~My bonsai will sit on my upper deck (2hn floor) south facing patio, I assume it will get alot of light, so id like something that can tolerate high amounts of intense light. (Australia is missing some of its O-zone layer and this makes sunlight more intense)
~ If possible I would like some red in the plant. Be it either the leaves at some point in the year, its blossoms, or what ever *shrug*
~I hope to achieve a small version of a Maple that grew in front of my house in the USA (style/wiring/molding). So basically something that will have a longer trunk/base and a loose ball of leaves on the top.
~I'm not fussed if it isnt a tree, a shrub with the leaves/color I'm looking for would also be great.
Well that is what I'm looking for and I'm hoping you guys can give me some advice on a bonsai suitable for a first timer that hits some or most of the previously listed points.
thanks in advance!