Neagari – A quick wiring

Posted by on Nov 12, 2014 | No Comments
Neagari – A quick wiring

This little exposed-root Japanese Black pine belongs to a friend. Actually, it was a seedling that I started, but the credit for the current state of the tree goes to a friend. He’s no longer doing bonsai and had the forethought to sell his collection before it deteriorated. This little tree was mine, then his, […]

Patience for Progress

Posted by on Nov 8, 2014 | 3 Comments
Patience for Progress

Bonsai can be a slow, sometimes frustrating hobby. But sometimes both delight and frustration can come from the same source. One of the first trees I ever bought was this small exposed-root Japanese Black Pine, I obtained it in the fall of 2003. It’s a slant, or semi-cascade, depending on how you look at it. […]

Slant Black Pine

Posted by on Nov 4, 2014 | 3 Comments
Slant Black Pine

This is one of my original black pine batch, from 2006. In this case I don’t think I put enough movement into the tree when it was younger. The current result is a tree that has a very nice base, but no curves or twists. I had been planning all along to remove the sacrifice […]

A Shohin Cascade Black Pine

Posted by on Oct 28, 2014 | No Comments
A Shohin Cascade Black Pine

This little pine is from my 2009 batch of seedlings. It was one that my friend and traveling companion for my 2008 visit to Kokufu-ten has been caring for for quite some time. While I was in Japan I bought a couple bags of seeds from a guy at the Green Club who sold mostly […]

A Redwood with Two Fronts

Posted by on Oct 18, 2014 | No Comments
A Redwood with Two Fronts

When I started in bonsai one of my first teachers was Tim Kong. Tim is a nice guy, and crazy about collecting both in the urban environment and in the coastal mountains. He never had much interest in the high mountain trees. His passion could have centered around redwood trees; he had many others but […]

Eleven Years’ Progress

Posted by on Oct 14, 2014 | No Comments
Eleven Years’ Progress

I had a recent comment asking what I was up to when blogging back in 2003. I had some bonsai back then but I was worrying mainly about remodeling my house. But, some of the photos from my 2003 blog are the only photos that I have remaining after a computer crash in 2005 that […]

Deadwood Details

Posted by on Sep 25, 2014 | No Comments
Deadwood Details

In the mountains, the details in juniper and other deadwood that you find on trees can be really incredible. It’s a good place to take some inspiration for how to treat the deadwood on a bonsai. These examples were all taken near Sonora pass in the Sierra Nevada mountains north of Yosemite National Park. Perhaps […]

A small Monterey Cypress

Posted by on Sep 11, 2014 | No Comments
A small Monterey Cypress

From the batch of Monterey Cypress that I started in 2007 I have only 6 trees that I’ve kept up to the present day. I wired some of the trees to be small, and others to be large. For the small trees the movement in the trunk was much more dramatic than the movement put […]

One Monterey Cypress

Posted by on Aug 9, 2014 | No Comments
One Monterey Cypress

In 2007, after having started a batch of pines the year before, I started a batch of Monterey Cypress. I collected the seed from a tree in the Presidio here in San Francisco. Cypress grow very fast, even as seedlings. It takes only a couple years to have a tree that is three feet tall, […]

Always propagating!

Posted by on Jul 19, 2014 | No Comments
Always propagating!

If you think that you can make great bonsai from nursery stock alone then you’re among the many people that will be making mediocre trees. You can spend a lifetime making a bonsai tree, so if you start from a place where you can’t ultimately end up with a good tree then you are robbing […]