How do you create canvases of green in cramped urban settings, especially in cities like Bengaluru or Mumbai?

However, Veena Nanda from Bengaluru has found the answer in bonsai and landscaping.

She runs Sunshine’s Garden Boutique, where she applies her bonsai artistry and landscape design expertise to create small, sustainable greenscapes in homes and open spaces.

Her passion for gardening was fostered in childhood, influenced by her grandfather’s coffee plantation and her mother's enthusiasm for gardening.

Veena was introduced to the world of these mini plants over 25 years ago in Mumbai’s crowded lanes and small homes.

The fact that India’s leading bonsai artists, Jyoti and Nikunj Parekh, lived nearby fuelled her passion and helped her learn and perfect the art form.

The art of bonsai involves stunting the growth of trees and plants through careful pruning and trimming. Originating in China and further developed in Japan, bonsai creates an appealing mini landscape.

Bonsais are particularly suitable for urban environments as they require less water and space while still adding aesthetic greenery to urban settings.

After moving back to Bengaluru, Veena won in many bonsai competitions, following which she started her venture to create greenspaces.

Veena has built over 1,000 bonsais with different fruiting trees like mango, chikoo and guava. “They use less water, less space, and look great.”

She has created a variety of bonsai over the years and currently specialises in landscapes created on hard surfaces such as rock and driftwood.

Her services include greenscaping, hardscaping, gazebos. She also teaches bonsai making through workshops.

Her work highlights the balance between conservation and aesthetic beauty, proving that urban spaces can be both functional and naturally appealing.

How to create a mango bonsai:  1. Buy small plants 2. Choose the right size pot 3. Do the wiring first 4. Add the base soil - gravel 5. Then a little of the mid level soil - mix of red soil + compost 6. Prune the roots and plants to size and place on soil 7. Tie the root ball 8. Then add balance soil and tighten 9. Add the top soil - moss 10. Add copper pins to stick the moss to soil 11. Water with rooting hormone