Bonsai Bark Weekly Wire

I’m in San Francisco for a few days, so why not lead with the Bonsai Society of San Francisco? I’ve perused plenty of bonsai society websites and the BSSF’s is, without a doubt, one of the most informative and complete. In conjunction with the site, they also have a monthly newsletter; Fog City Bonsai.   This amazing tree is one of many world-class bonsai at the Shinpukuji Temple bonsai museum. It’s from Boon Manakitivipart’s excellent Japan adventure. You can enjoy more photos from Boon’s trip and much more at Bonsai Tonight. Bonsai Apprenticeship minus the suffering From Peter Tea’s blog: … Continue reading Bonsai Bark Weekly Wire

Why Our New Bonsai Aesthetics Wire Is Such A Great Deal

It’s mostly about price… But it’s also about quality… Have you tried our NEW BONSAI AESTHETICS WIRE? We started selling it in June, and about a half ton later the verdict is in: it goes on easily and it holds very well. So well that’s it’s hard to tell the difference with wire that costs twice as much. Which brings us back to the price… 100 gram rolls are only 2.95 each with easy to achieve volume discounts of 10% to 30% 1 Kilo rolls are only 21.00 each also with easy to achieve volume discounts of 10% to 30% … Continue reading Why Our New Bonsai Aesthetics Wire Is Such A Great Deal

Bonsai Miksang

Photo by Morten Albek. From his Shohin blog. Miksang Miksang is a contemplative approach photography that’s about “uncovering the truth of pure perception… without the biases, filters and formulas often associated with photography” (from The Miksang Institute for Contemplative Photography). It seems to me to be a both disciplined and spontaneous approach to photography and to seeing; simply seeing without projection, with an open and unbiased mind. The photography of Morten Albek I have long been impressed by Morten Albek’s bonsai photography. Whether his photos are the result of a Miksang approach, I can’t say for sure, though it’s easy … Continue reading Bonsai Miksang

Small Is Beautiful

Caught in the act of flowering. This ubiquitous little hawthorn belongs to Morten Albek, shohin bonsai artist, author and teacher. The display appeared during a visit to Denmark by Tomohiro Masumi. Tomohiro Masumi, Morten Albek & Shohin bonsai Rather than bore you with my take on things, I’ll just post a few photos I think you might appreciate. If you want more (photos and information), you can visit Morten’s facebook post on Tomohiro Masumi’s visit to Denmark, or you can go directly to Morten’s website. If you’d like to dig deeper, you can also visit Tomohiro’s website. And then there’s … Continue reading Small Is Beautiful

Companions for Lonely Bonsai

I borrowed this intriguing display from Bonsai Art magazine’s website (I guess you can tell). I like the tree a lot, but it’s the companion that really caught my eye. Companions, accents, shitakusa, kusamono… whatever you call them One thing I like about companion plants is that good ones can have dual functions: you can team them with bonsai to create dynamic displays, or, if they are good enough, they can be displayed alone. This mystery plant from our mystery book easily stands alone.   One companion plant keeps three bonsai and a suiseki company in this circular shohin display. … Continue reading Companions for Lonely Bonsai

$250 Bonsai from Scratch Contest

A good example of a bonsai from scratch. Especially considering where it came from (see below). European yew (Taxus baccata) by Morten Albek (author of Majesty in Miniature, Shohin Bonsai), from Bonsai Today issue 107. Height 7″ Bonsai from Scratch It’s time to get start thinking about your entry in our upcoming Bonsai from Scratch Contest. We’re going to make it worth your while with a $250 Stone Lantern gift certificate for the winner and other gifts for outstanding entries. Five easy steps to get you started 1. Find an untrained stock plant. Your choice of size, variety etc. 2. … Continue reading $250 Bonsai from Scratch Contest

The Evolution of a Honeysuckle

Morten Albek’s now famous shohin Boxleaf honeysuckle as it appeared in the 2010 Danish Bonsai Exhibition where it was part of Morten’s winning shohin display (see below). Morten is the author of Majesty in Miniature: Shohin Bonsai (Stone Lantern publishing) and creator of the Shohin-Bonsai Europe website. Here’s how it looked when it appeared on the cover of Bonsai Today issue 105 six years ago. Same pot, but if you compare this with it’s later incarnation above (disregarding that this photo’s is much sharper) you’ll see a tree is maturing in a very positive direction. Moten’s winning display. In case … Continue reading The Evolution of a Honeysuckle

Inspired by the Master

I found this striking forest-on-a-cliff on facebook. It was posted by Dario Ascoli. It caught my attention for two reasons: first it stands on its own as decent bonsai with good potential for further development, and second, it is reminiscent of a famous Hinoki forest by Kimura (see below). Though I can’t find any information on this (who’s the artist etc), I’d wager that the trees are also Hinokis. Mature trees vs young trees Though comparisons are often odious (and unfair, especially when it’s with Kimura), still, older trees make for much more interesting forests. In this case, Kimura’s hinokis … Continue reading Inspired by the Master

Of Scrolls & Tokonomas

This tokonoma with its spectacular scroll, is from Daiza Iwasaki’s house in Japan. A more cropped version of this photo appears in Morten Albek’s book, Majesty in Miniature, Shohin Bonsai. The original completely uncropped photo is below. Bonsai display I don’t think too many people pay very close attention to bonsai display. I’m sure there are some who do, but judging from countless photos on facebook and elsewhere, display isn’t a major concern for most people (especially outside of Japan). Relationships Display is a lot about the relationship of the elements. Though I’m far from an expert on the subject, … Continue reading Of Scrolls & Tokonomas