This 392-Year-Old Bonsai Tree Survived the Hiroshima Atomic Blast & Still Flourishes Today: The Power of Resilience

There is no doubt that the bonsai have seen many highs and lows in Japan over the centuries.

The gorgeous bonsai tree, pictured above-let’s just call it Yamaki Pine Bonsai – began its journey around the globe in 1625. The Yamaki family was the first to train the tree. They worked patiently, one after the other, to make the tree the magnificent little thing that it is today.

August 6, 1945, when the United States dropped an atomic bomb on Hiroshima, devastating the city and leaving 140,000 civilians dead. The bomb exploded less than two miles from the Yamaki’s home. But defying the odds, the Yamaki Pine survived the blast. (It was protected by a wall surrounding the Yamaki’s bonsai nursery.) The family survived the blast too, suffering only minor cuts from flying glass.

Three decades later, in a rather remarkable act of forgiveness, the Yamaki family gifted the pine (along with 52 other cherished trees) to the United States, during the bicentennial celebration of 1976. Never did they say anything, however, about the traumas the tree survived. Only in 2001, when a younger generation of Yamakis visited Washington, did the caretakers at United States National Arboretum learn the full story about the tree’s resilience. The tree survived the worst mankind could throw at it. And kept its beauty intact. Surely you can do the same when life sends lesser challenges your way.

The video below gives you a better view of the Yamaki pine.

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