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Bonsai is a personal experience offering a remarkable amount of personal satisfaction. This art form has become an established pastime throughout the world as more and more people come to understand this fascinating hobby. Before you give way to your creative urge and plant your first seedling, however, it might be interesting to explore some facts concerning bonsai and how it has evolved over time. Did you know:

DID YOU KNOW?

DID YOU KNOW?Bonsai is a personal experience offering a remarkable amount of personal satisfaction. This art form has become an established pastime throughout the world as more and more people come to understand this fascinating hobby. Before you give way to your creative urge and plant your first seedling, however, it might be interesting to explore some facts concerning bonsai and how it has evolved over time. Did you know:That the origin of Bonsai, while often attributed to the Japanese, is actually Chinese in derivation. Many experts agree that bonsai, know as Pensai in China, was practiced by scholars, monks and the noble classes of China as far back as 600 A.D. A few centuries later, bonsai, along with Zen Buddhism, and much of the best of Chinese culture was brought to Japan.That the word "Bonsai", which is pronounced "Bone- Sigh", is made up of the two Japanese characters: "Bon" meaning tray and "sai" meaning plant, which when literally translated means: tray plant. That an earthquake is responsible for shifting the "epicenter" of bonsai cultivation in Japan. In 1923 an 8.3 magnitude earthquake devastated the entire Kanto region of Japan. Destroying vast portions of the two largest cities: Tokyo and Yokohama; along with a majority of the commercial bonsai businesses. As a result, the bonsai business community, in an effort to save their livelihoods, collectively purchased a tract of land outside of Tokyo, where their businesses once again flourished. Hence, a new epicenter of bonsai cultivation in Japan was created (which exists and thrives to this day).That in 1976 the people of Japan, in honor of the USA Bicentennial Celebration, presented to America 53 priceless bonsai trees and 6 remarkable viewing stones. These gifts were to become the foundation of our national collection. This magnificent group is housed at the National Bonsai and Penjing Museum, located within the U.S. National Arboretum, in Washington, D.C. It has since become the largest collection of its kind - housing bonsai from around the world! That all plants have a Botanical name -- a name that is unique to them -- and this is often called the Botanical name, although some people prefer to use the term: Latin name or Scientific name, instead. Plant names are based on the Latin language, which was considered the universal language during the 18th century when a vast majority of the "naming" of newly discovered plants was taking place. Botanical names are descriptive. They describe many characteristics specific to that plant such as: the place of origin, color, growth habit, leaf size, bark texture, etc. That displaying a bonsai is an art onto itself. The traditional elements of bonsai display include: a bonsai tree, a display table or stand, an accent item, and a scroll. Each of these elements plays a vital role in the display by constructing, generating, and producing an emotional and intellectual panorama. The bonsai tree is and always should be the most important component of every display.As you can imagine the foregoing is merely a fundamental insight into the world of bonsai founded on communion with nature. I urge all with an interest in this popular hobby to go ahead and create their own work of art. The principles of bonsai are simple and easy to apply and many invaluable teaching resources are available to assist.

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IT

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Looking for a Motorcycle Loan??

Looking for a Motorcycle Loan??

The motorcycle is an economical means of transportation, when compared to other vehicles. Because of the smaller engine, a motorcycle offers good mileage and is convenient to use for errands. All these make it a desirable possession for all of us. However, a not-so-good credit history may prevent you from owning a bike. The Bad Credit Motorcycle Loans can prove to be quite helpful in such situations.Why Bad Credit Motorcycle Loans?The Bad Credit Motorcycle Loan is the easiest way for all cyclist enthusiasts out there to get the bike of their dreams. With bad credit motorcycle loan, people suffering from bad credit status can avail substantial amount of money and drive away on their magic-on-wheels. Not only that, using bad credit "motorcycle loan" people can go for improving their credit score, which can be very beneficial for future loan prospects.Be cautiousWith so many variants flooding the market, motorcycle buyers tend to be confused. They should ask the right questions before signing on the dotted line, like:Is the interest rate fixed or variable?What happens if a payment is late by some days? Does the interest rate increase?How long is the term on the motorcycle loan?What is the down payment requirement to get the motorcycle loan?Is full coverage insurance required?SpecificationsThis is a secure loan with the bike you buy with the loan amount being the collateral. The amount of the loan usually covers most of the cost of the motorcycle. The loan amount that can be availed is usually in between 5000 to 20000.The interest rate of bad credit motorcycle loan depends upon various factors like value of bike, monthly income, repayment ability of the borrower etc. The repayment duration is always flexible, but one should be cautious as interest rates may be higher later. Regular payment of loan installments is a must because lenders can take legal action against you in case of non payment.

Canada Plays China Card

Canada Plays China Card

Trade friction and energy leverage has led to an unprecedented Canadian policy of speak loudly and carry a big piece of lumber policy towards the United States. The long running dispute over American tariffs on Canadian lumber escalated to the point last week that Canadian Prime Minister Paul Martin indirectly linked settlement with continued U.S. access to Canadian energy supplies. Meanwhile, Canadian Natural Resources Minister John McCallum was off to China to meet with Chinese oil, mining and forestry officials. This is serious business. Part of the 1994 NAFTA Free Trade Agreement guaranteed that Canada would remain the favored supplier to the U.S. It might surprise you to learn that Canada supplies 17% of U.S. oil imports, 16% of our natural gas and nearly all of our hydroelectric power. The Canadian government owns the vast majority of the countrys energy resources and Canada exports more than 1.5 million barrels a day to America representing 8% of U.S. consumption. Chinas Lengthening Reach Meanwhile, Chinas aggressive moves in Canadas energy sector are raising eyebrows in Washington. Chinese government has earmarked $100 billion for overseas acquisitions of oil and gas. The Chinese are going on a buying spree investing in Canadian energy companies and recently plunked down $2 billion to build a thousand mile pipeline from Alberta tar sands to port on the west coast and onward to Beijing and Shanghai. While the oil reserve numbers for Saudi Arabia are under scrutiny, Canada has recoverable reserves of roughly 175 million barrels. Much of it is in oil sand that is processed profitably at oil prices of $20 or higher and T. Boone Pickens thinks that Canadas oil sand production could reach 6 million barrels a day There are now about 1 million ethnic Chinese residing in Canada and China is now Canadas second largest trading partner. Last month, Chinese President Hu Jintao visited Canada and declared that the two countries had upgraded their relations to a strategic partnership. The USs Waning Grasp This Chinese-Canadian power play puts America in real jam. You could write a book about the long simmering lumber dispute but a Nafta panel recently ordered the U.S. to return $5 billion of collected tariffs to Canadian lumber companies. Relations with Canada were also weakened earlier this year when Canada announced that it would not contribute to the American-led missile defense program even though 90% of Canadian citizens live within 100 mile of the border between the two countries and Americans purchase 85% of total Canadian exports. Whats going on? Part of the answer is that the vast majority of Canadians oppose the policies of the Bush Administration. The issue is sensitive in many areas across Canada that are highly dependent on the lumber industry and Mr. Martin and his party are preparing for national elections expected early next year. It is always a vote getter to poke a stick in the eye of the elephant to the south. How to Play While Canadian-American relations have seen better days, the energy boom has certainly been beneficial to investors in Canadian markets. The Canada iShare (EWC) tracks the MSCI Canada Index that has 40% exposure to Canadas energy and materials sector. While the S&P index is up only 3%, the Canada iShare is up 16.6% year to date and 28.8% over the past twelve months. Speaking of timber, it is smart to have some timber exposure in your portfolio and I have had timber REIT Plum Creek Timber (PCL) in our core portfolio for over two years. Here is why I like it. First, timber is a great inflation hedge and over the past 100 years has risen 3% above the average annual inflation rate. Secondly, timber is not correlated to stocks or bonds and thus is a great shock absorber to cushion your portfolio when shares are declining. During the 1970s bear market, timber rose in value while stocks went down. Thirdly, from 1973-2000 timber yielded an average annual return of 15%. Last but not least, timber valuations are attractive after some declines during 2000-2002 especially relative to real estate prices. During 2004 Plum Creek was up 23% and this year it has traded between $34 and $39 finishing last week just over $35 with an attractive dividend yield of 4.3%. It behooves the U.S. to negotiate a settlement to the lumber dispute as soon as possible and lock up Canadian energy sources before the Chinese get the jump on us. Investors cant do much about improving Canadian-American relations but they can improve their portfolios by adding exposure to timber as well as to Canada as both an energy and China play.

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Summary

Bonsai is a personal experience offering a remarkable amount of personal satisfaction. This art form has become an established pastime throughout the world as more and more people come to understand this fascinating hobby. Before you give way to your creative urge and plant your first seedling, however, it might be interesting to explore some facts concerning bonsai and how it has evolved over time. Did you know: