A bonsai lineup in Japan is only complete when, along with the Bonsai Tree, also artful objects are present, such as figurines, scroll and accent plants. Initially there were some lovely mountain grasses used as an accent plant. Later flowering plants were also used. The accent plant should fit the bonsai and example show season show where the bonsai is exhibited. A flowering plant summer in a winter arrangement is therefore not desirable.
An accent plant should display a certain maturity, old age. Bonsaiisten often have multiple accent plants at their disposal, in order to ensure that they have appropriate and mature accent plant in any season.