Bonsai!

Completely off the Topic of Tea

Bonsai!

Postby Chip » Feb 3rd, '11, 20:54

I know others enjoy bonsai given its Japanese (and Chinese) origins.

Please share bonsai you own or have seen ... telling us where. Also share any info on the pictured subject you may know such as species, age, date photo was taken, etc.

I am looking forward to sharing photos and discussion on bonsai with interested members. :mrgreen:

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Re: Bonsai!

Postby Chip » Feb 3rd, '11, 20:57

Kicking it off with a photo of a Chinese Elm (in honor of the Chinese New Year), Ulmus parvifolia, that has been in training since 1929. Height is over 3'. We have been watching this specimen at the Gardens for several decades.

Their bonsai are in a Winter holding area that is quite cool, thus unfortunately I had to photograph it through glass, thus the reflections ... and sorry for the shadows, every single bonsai had an upright shadow running right up the trunk, what are the odds.
Image

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Re: Bonsai!

Postby the_economist » Feb 3rd, '11, 21:04

lovely! i like the idea of bonsai a lot :)

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Re: Bonsai!

Postby Xell » Feb 3rd, '11, 21:14

Looks quite amazing. I like growing plants and certainly i would like to try bonsai if i can get my own house :wink: I'll try to take some photos, if i see bonsai around here :)

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Re: Bonsai!

Postby tenuki » Feb 3rd, '11, 23:10

I've raised bonsai twice, and both times they were killed by my proxy neglecting them while I was on vacation. :evil: I'm planning on starting up again maybe this year, but this time with an automated watering system so that doesn't happen again.


20 miles south of seattle is a great bonsai collection I like to go look at:

http://www.weyerhaeuser.com/Company/Bonsai/Gallery

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Re: Bonsai!

Postby debunix » Feb 3rd, '11, 23:35

I saw a truly stunning Bonsai collection when I was in Japan in 2004, but after taking 1 photo, was told that photos were not allowed. Will try to dig the one up--it was an incredible sight.

Another fantastic collection I've seen was at the National Arboretum which has a bonsai collection that includes many diplomatic gifts from Japan--truly priceless ancient trees.

Unfortunately, my first real forays into bonsai have not gone well. Two lovely little trees--a Korean lilac (smaller leafed than the usual lilac seen here in California, and perfect for bonsai, and a little valley oak--were killed by an industrious little squirrel who girdled them both as they enjoyed some outdoor time on my balcony.

Would like to try again but my present rental is not well set up for them. Hope to correct that when I can actually buy a place.

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Re: Bonsai!

Postby Chesslover » Feb 4th, '11, 04:31

I love bonsai. Had few tries on my own, but not very successful:). Maybe someday, when my kids grow up and we move from apartment to a countryside house...

My favorite bonsai is Walter Pall's acer palmatum (which unfortunately already died):
Image

Second close - also from Walter Pall:
Image

I also like famous bonsai forrest of John Naka:
Image

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Re: Bonsai!

Postby Drax » Feb 5th, '11, 21:15

Oooh, pretty pictures! :mrgreen:

About a year ago, Borders had one of those giant-sized books on Bonsai on sale for ~$10. It was partly a "how-to," but regardless of the words, the pictures were well worth the cost!

Anyway, when Spring rolls around, I will be attempting to convert two of my plants into bonsai -- a jade and a christmas cactus. I know those aren't traditional bonsai plants, but they are plants I have proven to myself over the last 2-4 years that I can keep them alive..... :mrgreen:

I'm curious, though, if anybody has photos of bonsai of those plants...?

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Re: Bonsai!

Postby Chesslover » Feb 6th, '11, 10:34

Try google...it finds quite a lot jade bonsai...but almost no christmas cactus bonsai...

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Re: Bonsai!

Postby Chip » Feb 6th, '11, 18:22

Although I have been out of the bonsai loop for a while, names like John Naka have been prominent for decades.

Jade plants are like natural bonsai, though not tradtional. They just natually grow into bonsai shapes with think trunks and in a very short time.

debunix wrote:I saw a truly stunning Bonsai collection when I was in Japan in 2004, but after taking 1 photo, was told that photos were not allowed. Will try to dig the one up--it was an incredible sight.

Another fantastic collection I've seen was at the National Arboretum which has a bonsai collection that includes many diplomatic gifts from Japan--truly priceless ancient trees.

Wow, that is unfortunate about the not being permitted to take photos, although I can sort of understand ... I really don't. As long as the photos were for personal enjoyment, why not???!!!

Longwood Gardens clearly posts that photographing is permitted for personal enjoyment, and not for sale or gain. This seems more than fair.

Having passed by the National Arboretum and knowing about it since it pre-inception, I really have to get there and check it out! Not just for the bonsai collection which is worth the trip on its own, but also for the arboretum as well.

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Re: Bonsai!

Postby Chip » Feb 6th, '11, 18:30

Acer palmatum or Momiji, Japanese Maple. Again from the Longwood collection. Only in training since 1979, a relatively short time in bonsai years ... this is a hobby that teaches patience.

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Re: Bonsai!

Postby IPT » Feb 6th, '11, 23:50

I've tried to grow bonsai many times and I always manage to kill them. I have a brown thumb. It's quite upsetting!

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Re: Bonsai!

Postby Nenugal » Feb 7th, '11, 03:21

I really want to try bonsai, but I have a bad tendency to kill plants. I even once killed a cactus by watering it too little! But I've decided that when I finish my PhD, I will start with a simple bonsai tree and try my best to keep it alive.

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Re: Bonsai!

Postby gargoylekitty » Feb 7th, '11, 06:11

I had one when I was younger, though a move wasn't kind to it. Perhaps again one day, when I'm more settled.

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Re: Bonsai!

Postby bearsbearsbears » Feb 7th, '11, 12:52

For those of us in Southern California, take note that the Huntington Library & Gardens in San Marino is having their Bonsai-a-Thon February 26 & 27.

This includes appearances from "internationally recognized bonsai masters" and "exhibits, demonstrations, prize drawings, a 'bonsai bazaar' and a live auction at 3 p.m. each day."

That's my birthday weekend, and as my boyfriend and I are members, we'll likely be going.

EDIT: Here's a google image link searching "Huntington Bonsai" if you'd like a preview/bonsai pr0n.

Also, next weekend there is their annual Camellia Show. We went yesterday to stroll through their camellia forest; practically every japonica is in full bloom. It's quite spectacular. Come see some rare imported and locally bred relatives of the tea plant showing their stuff!

More info at Huntington.org. :mrgreen:

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