they're hard to grow due to the tiny amount of soil they have. you're basically stunting the tree by giving it juuuust enough water to hang on. this is why forgetting to water is so disastrous. they require almost daily care/training/shaping, but they're sooo cool. I trained a couple (pines) and bought a maple bonsai when I was in high school. I gave them to an older friend in town who taught me everything I know about horticulture (friend of my grandparents', had a stroke, I helped him out at his wholesale propagation nursery through high school) when I went to college. he died, and his wife still has the maple.
Yeah, I've always been fascinated with bonsai trees since I saw Karate Kid in the 80s....I hear juniper saplings make good candidates for bonsai trees. And speaking of Ralph Macchio, who here remembers the guitar duel (Ry Cooder versus Steve Vai) in the movie Crossroads?
I had two for a while and they are a lot of work to maintain but they are really cool. If you dont know the proper way to trim them you will kill them so i would recommend buying a book first before ya buy them. Its really cool how you can get them to take whatever shape ya want tho.