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Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Some recent work......

Just a few things that have been given a little love over the past few weeks....
Large Japanese Maple.

In 5 years it will be a stunner! The front will change from the picture below.
Cutting it back this hard was the right thing to do, infact it should have been
done 3 years ago....instead of wasting the past 3 years on this one. Live and learn.

Ponderoas pine now in a Mike Hagedorn pot. I love this tree and it can only get better
from here. Pot is nice, but not the final pot.
Fatty elm after letting it grow unchecked last year.

Changed the front and did lots of branch work. Give this one a few years then watch out! :)
I know, bad picture quality! This tree was posted on BonsaNut last which some
did virtuals of it in a naturalistic style. I liked what they did but this trunk lends itself to a more
traditional styling. This is what the tree needs and wants, it wants to be short, super fat and powerful. Better pictures to come this spring.

Crabapple with a 4" trunk...bigger than you would think.

Roots......tons of them! Anderson flats and pumice do amazing things, no matter the species of tree

In a large oval pot. Need to work on branch ramification now.

Shohin Ponderosa

Same tree in a clamshell style pot by Sir Knight. One he was going to throw away.
This will look good in summer and next spring when the accents get established and fill in a bit.
But its a start!

Amny more to post later.... But for now here is one that is now in line for some work,
 a rather large pine...... My good buddy Tony there as "bonsai model extrordinare", lol!

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Shohin Chinese Elm

This little elm is one of my favorites in the garden. Something about it just really appeals to me. I never liked the oval it was in just because it seemed to be to bulky and masculine of a pot. It really seemed to dominate the tree.  While I was cleaning the moss off the roots and thinning the foliage I thought now is as good a time as any to look at re potting the tree too. So I grabbed this little Erin pot that I thought would work well with the tree. The blues and browns in the pot will really work with the green leaf, the bark and the blues will really accentuate the fall colors. The only issue I had is I wish it had been a tiny bit wider. Oh well, it works just fine I think.

Before any work.

OH NO, NAKED!!! haha Roots just as I pulled it out of the little oval by Erin pottery.
Branches are thinned at this point.

Pots that I think will work. A blue-ish oval, a blue/brown rectangle and the oval it was in.

Root work underway, you can see the can for scale and the huge pile of Akadama, lava and pumice. There were a ton of roots on this little guy.
Soil I used was imported from Japan. It has akadama, lava, pumice and another Japanese clay in there. I use it on a lot of my shohins and accent plants and really like it so far. I got it from John Kirby at Vonsgardens. I don't know the name of it as the package is all in Japanese.
Potted up
In its new pot and lots of guy wires to reposition many of the branches. I think the new pot puts more emphasis on the tree and is less dominating that the previous pot. I think the colors in the pot will work very well and the size is good. The nebari touches all sides of the pot like it grew in it forever. Very, very good nebari. This is one of my favorites. Picture quality is not that great, I will update with better once in leaf. I hope you enjoy as I do.....

Dwarf Quince, Shohin

Here is a nice little dwarf quince that has amazing bark and is a cool little tree. Over this past summer it dried out and I lost the big lower limb on the left. My stomach sank when I noticed it dead....but then I thought that it would be a new chance to change the tree a bit.

 So today I decided that it would be the day to give it a look over and make some changes. The leaves are just starting to break.

As I started, lower left limb is dead.


With Pepsi for scale.

I used mostly guy wires because I didn't want to damage any of the bark. Even though the bark is pretty tough I still felt it best. I did have to wire a few branches though. The guy wires are unsightly but effective for now. I am please with the way this came out since it was a complete restyle. This type of work is fun. I just hate the way picturs don't do bonsai justice..... oh well.
Finished for now.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Twisty Ponderosa

Here is a Ponderosa I collected back in the Rockies the summer of 2008. The pictures below were taken then.

I decided that it was time to work on it.I always knew what I wanted to do with the tree and the chance to work with good friends on trees presented itself I took this tree along. I learned quite a bit from a good friend of mine on some bending....

Now the after shots. The tree turned out pretty nice and looks much better in person. I look forward to getting it into a pot soon. This was just an initial styling and as it back buds and fills in it will be a special tree for me.

OregonBonsai's Website.

Here is a copy of the email I sent out today.
"As of today, Sunday Jan. 24th 2010 Oregon Bonsai's website has been shut down. A new direction and chapter is about to open up for OB and it will be an exciting time. A strategic partnership is being formed and said party will be working as a reseller/ distributor for some of the trees collected by Oregon Bonsai. More details will be released in the near future as they become available.

This has nothing to to with the economic climate as that market for high end collected material is stronger today than it ever has been. This has to do with a new direction and a new era in American bonsai.

Randy Knight, the owner or Oregon Bonsai is very thankful and happy for the new friendships that the website has supplied us over the past 2 years and he looks forward to meeting many more new friends around the world in the coming years.
If anyone has any questions or comments please feel free to email me.
As details become available in the future I will put them on my blog so that everyone can have an idea about where to puchase the best collected material.



Friday, January 1, 2010

Shohin Ponderosa Pine

Here is a little ponderosa that I have had laying around in the front yard for over a year. A year ago I barerooted the little guy and potted it in lava and pumice. There has been an explosion of bew buds since then. This coming spring I will again repot it into a suitable bonsai pot which will change the image quite a bit. This will allow one to see the movement of the trunk coming out of the soil line.

Before I started it was about 8" tall and over 22" wide. Now is the time to give this dog a future and hope to one day be a bonsai

Lookin at the inside you can see a few rather large branches that are almost the same diameter as the trunk. While I can easily bend these it would just look funny and not be a good idea. After a minute a most of them were cut off and the tree changed drastically!

Branch selection has been made and now time to do some cuttting!

Jins have been worked, burned and will now age naturally in the great outdoors. By next fall they will be weathered and a nice grey in color. Tube of cut paste there for size comparison. Now the tree is very small and looks nothing like what it did 2 minutes ago. Maybe a future afterall?

After exposing the roots and seeing what the trunk did below the current soil line I chose to use this as the front. Ponderosa shohin are rare because they tend to have long needles. But there are short needle ponderosa out there, we see them from time to time. Or one could graft Black Pine on them as well. But for now native will work. While this tree will never be a show tree it will fit in nicely with my growing collection of shohin trees.  Next years posts here will show a much improved and filled out tree that will also be in a pot. Isn't bonsai fun? :)

Keep in mind this is an initial styling and the tree will continue to improve over the coming years. It has to start somewhere :)

Updated Literati Ponderosa

Here is an update on a nice ponderosa that I collected a few years back. It responded well to the initial styling and threw many, many buds that I had to thin quite a bit. I am very confident that in 2 years this will be a very full and killer tree. They bark and trunk line are very nice and elegant while the crown is starting to come along. It too will change quite a bit over the coming years as it fills in and extends. I see the foliage getting tighter and a smaller time though! Here is is last year

Instead of tearing it up like the wildman I once was on New Years eve I stayed in and cranked out some trees!! No better way to ring in the new year than sap on your hands and copper wire rolls everywhere~!

Old Front

After some thinning and now ready for wire

Done for the time being. The fronts angle change quite a bit to enhance the subtle movement and the abrupt change of direction at the top. While some of the foliage does go away from teh viewer it looks really good in person. This coming Feb. I will be putting it into its new pot and that will take the tree to the next level for sure.

Happy New Years!

I wish everyone a Happy New Year! I know 2010 will be a great one for me on many fronts. I know my bonsai world will be exploding with many new and exciting things. You will just have to watch this blog to see what I am talking about in the coming months. On a personal front, our almost 2 year old daughter is a pure joy! It is amazing that not even 2 yet, the things she can do, comprehend and say. Its amazing and I am still in awe of her everyday.

Here is to a happy, healthy and wonderful 2010!