Thanks xman. It was not a purchase I was intending to make, but I just couldn't walk away from it. It's my very first bonsai tree. I love it so much, it just got moved from it's original pedestal in the yard (a tree stump art/bench thing) to a table right by the front door. On another note, I just got my first online tree in the mail yesterday. You'all raved so much about Diana at Topiary Gardens that I could resist the online temptation no longer. I bought a cute little Oki kasme from her. I'm thrilled with her packaging and accessibility after the sale. And I no sooner get this "last purchase of the year" than I'm drooling over other cultivars on the internet. I must be sick. And apparently I'm infectious because my poor hapless friend just bought two JM's for which she hadn't planned and is now talking about a road trip down to the nursery from where I got my last batch. LOL And a clarification, I don't dislike Japanese Gardens. I dislike sterotypical Japanese ornaments or the invasive species bamboo in my own gardens. My point was that Japanese Gardens and Japanese Maple Gardens are not synonymous. Actually I recently read Ortho's All About Creating Japanese Gardens and it really got me thinking about how to apply some underlying principles in my own gardens. I'm particularly excited about "borrowed scenery", "forced diminishing perspective", and "asymmetrical balance". And most of all, I really resonate to the idea that a true Japanese Garden is a sacred place. According to Ortho, "A primary purpose of Japanese gardens it to create a place apart, a sanctuary, a setting removed from the everyday world." IMHO, the best gardens or natural spots have a beauty that catches your attention and touches your spirit. For me, they are places where I feel stillness and appreciation enter my heart.