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In bonsai, jin is the Japanese term that refers to a dead branch which has lost its bark. It may also be used as a verb i.e. to jin (a branch).
In the wild, dead branches are eventually bleached white or pale grey by the elements. This occurs commonly in confers, especially junipers and pines, but less so in deciduous trees (oak would be an exception).
The process is replicated in bonsai by shortening branches to stubs, stripping the bark and splintering the heartwood to a naturalistic form. The jin may then be arificially bleached in order to reproduce the colour seen in nature.
Jin means "God" and is symbolic of the Supreme Being's influence on nature.
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