One to One: Mixed Bag

Bonsai Eejit

I had Ben over for a one to one last Saturday with a van load of trees to discuss and work on, always an enjoyable session with Ben.

These are a few of the trees covered on the day. First up a beech that got a pruning, thread grafting and a repot.









This Beech group on a slate had a few adjustment made to the slate so it didn’t look like it had just been stolen off a roof!




And finally a Yamadori Hawthorn getting it’s first shaping. A strange one to do but we opted to try and recreate an actual Hawthorn image that can be seen throughout Ireland. Typically seen growing the in the middle of a field with cattle lying under it. I suggested this to Ben as a possible accent feature but thankfully he’s wise enough to know that this would be tacky 🙂






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Philippine Bonsai Society stages the 2015 PBSI National Bonsai Exhibition and Competition


Bonsai 1

The Philippine Bonsai Society, the premiere bonsai organization in the Philippines since 1973,  will be staging its 2015 PBSI National Bonsai Exhibition and Competition on May 13 – 20, 2015 at the Flower Garden area, Quezon Memorial Circle, Elliptical Road, Diliman, Quezon City, Philippines.

The PBSI’s national competition and exhibition has been the mecca of bonsai enthusiasts all over the Philippines, wherein it has been a tradition that bonsai trees from the different end points of the country gather together for the Spirit of Bonsai.

Following the remarkable hosting of the Asian Bonsai Friendship Federation (ABFF) last 2013, the PBSI will again mark another milestone activity as we bring you the once-in-a-lifetime hosting of the Bonsai Clubs International (BCI) Regional Convention in 2016.

Like every blockbuster shows, this year’s national exhibition serves as the prequel for the BCI event. Besides bonsai, there will be suiseki or natural stone exhibition and…

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The best tree for beginners.


The very best tree for a beginner to own, bar none, is one that she or he has researched extensively. I’ve always kept a small zoo of animals and if you look online this snake or that snake is always described as being a ‘beginner’ animal, but the truth is these creatures want to live and if you provide the appropriate environment they will. The same is true of trees. Critical to bonsai is correct effort and the correct time. If you know what those actions are, the time they are to be performed and can provide the correct environment for your tree you would have to be very unlucky indeed to kill your tree.

With that said, the reason that both trees and snakes are described as ‘beginner friendly’ is because they will tolerate your fuck ups.

Advanced artists can make a triple axel look easy, the cultivation of…

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Airlayer it!

Bonsai Eejit

Finally got around to sorting a few air layers this week.

First up was this Korean Hornbeam. This is the front as it sits now.


This will be the new front. However the top of the taller trunk is heavy and needs removed. It will make a nice little shohin clump if layered off.


Layer point marked.


Cambium layer removed.


Layer in pace.


And this Cork bark Elm with poor nebari.




And this Zelkova which will make a nicer broom having removed all the tall leaders.




A Chinese Elm that I’m layering for a customer. The tree came to me in poor health and had lost a lot of lower branches. Best option is to layer off the top and use the nice base as a new tree.



Dis a few more but was on a roll and forgot the camera 🙂

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Photo Shoot in Germany-

Michael Hagedorn

Two years ago I fell out of the sky and landed in Germany. Actually that’s not quite accurate, I rolled in by train from Prague, after falling out of the sky in Vienna. Obviously I’ve forgotten some of the details. In any event, once there (in Germany) I did a photo shoot for the bonsai magazine, Bonsai Art. The shoot happened at Bonsai-Zentrum, a large, full-scale bonsai nursery run by Wolfgang and Ingo Klemend. The subject was a root-connected European Larch, collected by the Klemends in the Alps some years before.

The editor of Bonsai Art, Ivo Drüge, generously gave me the thumbs up to republish part of the article here. Those of you who speak German will be at an advantage with the captions. The words look just lovely visually, being the language of Goethe and Rilke and all, but I’ve spared you the body of the text…

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