Monday, December 14, 2009
Here are some pics from this past summer and fall. Most of them were taken on the island, while some, like this larch, Japanese black pine, and huge shore pine, are from a nursery on the mainland. All the summer pics are from the private collection of Bob Deryk, who in my opinion has the best collection of Japanese maples and Trident maples i've ever seen. Some of the remaining shots are from the Bonsai farm of George Heffelfinger, past president of the American Bonsai Federation.
Wednesday, December 2, 2009
This old Hemlock was collected by my friend Anton Nijhuis of Vancouver Island. It stands 35inches from surface to crown, and the trunk, at its base, is 5inches wide. Its age is approx. 250 years old. I think it will eventually go in a wide round earthen pot, as it has several fronts. Below, the branches were simply thinned and wired downwards in that soft, sweeping manner you would see in a natural specimen growing in the mountains. The lower trunk and dead wood will need some further work. And perhaps the apex could be coaxed down and to the left slightly, resulting in a stronger curve mid trunk. ?
Monday, November 30, 2009
Here are a few samples of the hundreds of beautiful old trees that were on display at the recent convention in Victoria B.C. Most of the trees seen here are native to the high alpine meadows of Vancouver island, but there were dozens of imports and specimens grown from seed and nursery stock. Amongst some of the finer more elegent non-native trees was this Japanese Maple grown from a cutting more than twenty years ago.
Thursday, November 19, 2009
Saturday, January 24, 2009
Here are some photos from the first in a series of contained patio beds, using as few mediums as possible to create a calm, minimalist look. The mediums used are: One blue diamond azalea, two half man basalt boulders, crushed salt & pepper granite, and finally a mixture of awned haircap moss and tall clustered thread moss. There are two more installations yet to be completed. Photos coming soon.
The round winter sun is slowly climbing higher and higher into the sky. Just a few weeks ago its light was hidden by the neighbors red cedar, throwing cold shadows across the garden. Now its light shines right into the bonsai courtyard and into the black bamboo and weeping white pines at the gate. I can hardly wait for spring.......
I recently acquired this very old mountain hemlock with enormous potential through a trade with a good friend. Some styling and pruning has been done already, with a little more left to do before the tree's finished form is "realized". The tree itself is perfectly healthy. However, the lower trunk has suffered some considerable rot in the past, and had to be carved out to the hardwood. As far as appearances go, it really isn't very nice to look at, at all, and a solution is in the works. Some have suggested using a type of tree putty (the kind used for sealing cuts and wounds) to fill in the carved out area, then apply hemlock bark as naturally as possible over the fresh and sticky tree putty, hopefully concealing all evidence of the 'wound'. Others have suggested a more esoteric method, by searching out the lifelines of the tree, carefully peeling them off the trunk, wrapping them in sphagnum moss/soil etc, then removing the unwanted lower trunk and starting over again with a shorter tree. I'm not sure i like either.....perhaps I'll try the tree seal method first.......