Man Busted For Disguising His Pot Plants As Bonsai Trees

The post Man Busted For Disguising His Pot Plants As Bonsai Trees appeared first on High Times.

Satoshi Ohashi, a 35-year old janitor living in the Higashiyodogawa Ward of Osaka, Japan, was arrested at his home last month for cultivating and selling “taima”—the Japanese word for marijuana (pronounced “tie-mah”)—which resembled bonsai trees due to his unique cultivation methods.

Ohashi treated his pot plants as if they were bonsai trees, rather than employ the usual cultivation and production methods to grow pot plants, which normally grow over a meter high. Ohashi’s plants maxed out at 40 centimeters (15.748 inches) high instead.

Bonsai Trees: Here’s What You Need To Know

Man Busted For Disguising His Pot Plants As Bonsai Trees

Literally translated, “bon-sai” means “planted in a container.”

Bonsai defoliation involves cutting all the leaves of the tiny tree during the summer. In doing so, you force the tree to grow new leaves, leading to a reduction in the size of the leaves and an increase in ramification.

Another very important aspect of a bonsai is its “nebari” (Japanese for “root-flare”)—the surface roots that provide visual balance to a tree.

Creating a nebari can be done using two methods: by regularly pruning the downward growing roots, or by applying a propagation technique called “toriki,” or “air layering.”

The principal of layering is to force a tree or branch to form new roots at a certain point by interrupting the stream of nutrients from the existing root system. Air-layering can be used for several purposes: reducing the length of a trunk, growing a better nebari, or selecting a branch to be grown as a separate tree.

Police discovered 21 bonsai pot plants, each approximately 12 to 15 inches high, in Ohashi’s house.

Man Busted For Disguising His Pot Plants as Bonsai Trees

Approximately 212 grams of cannabis worth about 1.2 million yen (equivalent to $10,550) was confiscated during the bust. Ohashi was arrested and charged with “suspicion of cultivating 21 cannabis plants.”

According to the Kinki Welfare Bureau Narcotics Control Division, Ohashi explained to police how he had used bonsai techniques to trim, prune and manicure the plants—so that he could maximize his grow yield in his small apartment space.

Ohashi matter-of-factly told the authorities that this was the first time he had produced such a great cannabis crop.

Marijuana Cultivation In Japan

Man Busted For Disguising His Pot Plants as Bonsai Trees

Growing weed in Japan is notoriously risky, especially considering that Japanese authorities treat it with the same disdain, punishment and drug class distinction as heroin. Jail time is almost always a certainty.

Another Japanese marijuana grower, Sataru Washimi of Hokkaido, was recently incarcerated after the authorities were alerted in response to an incessant smoke alarm emanating from his home.

The alarm was set off by a space heater that was drying a crop of harvested pot plants, hanging upside-down in his apartment. Unfortunately, Washimi was in Tokyo at the time and had ignored his friend’s advice not to leave his plants unattended.

The Mr. Miyagi Of Cannabis

Man Busted For Disguising His Pot Plants as Bonsai Trees

High Times will stay tuned to find out if Ohashi, dubbed the “Mr. Miyagi of Cannabis” by the Japanese media, is eventually willing to take on a Daniel-san or two, to benkyo (study) bonsai bud cultivation from the Osaka-based master. Asahi TV aired a video clip of the adorable pot plants disguised as bonsai trees.

The post Man Busted For Disguising His Pot Plants As Bonsai Trees appeared first on High Times.