Callistemon ‘Little John’ update

In the previous post I showed early shots of work done on a collected Callistemon at Canberra Bonsai show.

Since then I have had the carving tools and some wire out.

Hoping the jin and shari at the top of the vertical trunk will help to give the impression of taper to an otherwise thick trunk.

Many of the existing small shoots have been wired to enhance the natural movement of the 2 trunks. Quite a few of these will no doubt be removed as they mature and thicken up.

Now we can give this one a rest to regain strength and put on a little more growth

 

Myrtleford Show 2018

Last weekend Ian from Alpine Art Bonsai and I put together another good display of quality bonsai to promote our art. Weather was fine and more people through the gates so we had even more stopping to ask questions of just to admire the trees this year.

The cooler weather this year meant that my azaleas were in full bloom for this weekend.

 

First place in ‘flowering bonsai’ category

 

 

 

 

 

A tiny cotoneaster cascade missed out on a place. Maybe the judge did not see it?

 

 

 

 

Ian’s Phoenix graft juniper received a prize in the single trunk competition.

 

 

 

This trident maple forestĀ also caught the judge’s eye in the ‘group or multi trunk’ category.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Canberra 2018

Canberra Bonsai show was held over the weekend of October 13 and 14.

Shibui Bonsai again had a trade table this year. Sales were even more brisk than usual and we took home very few plants after the show.

Canberra Bonsai Society always put on a great show and the quality of the trees continues to improve each year. Here are a couple of the trees that took my eye. Continue reading

Projects with Trident Maple seedlings

Here at Shibui Bonsai we have a few large trident maples in the garden. As a result we also have a plentiful supply of trident maple seedlings every year. These provide an abundant resource for bonsai projects for both me, other members of out local club and Shibui Bonsai customers. Trident seedlings are available each year from June until I get tired of digging and packing them…………………. Continue reading

Those roots

Some of you may have noted the evenly spread roots on the trident maples in the previous post. Those of you who have been following for a while or who have been back through earlier posts will already be aware that nebari like that is not just a coincidence.

 

 

Here’s the same trident maple from below. The original trunk that was threaded through the hole in the aluminium plate is still visible and functioning. As it grows a little thicker, circulation will be further restricted and it will gradually die off but the new roots above the plate are now strong and healthy enough to support the tree.

 

More pictures and a full description in the 12-Aug 2017 post – Develop great nebari #2

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Trident winter pruning

Cold weather has finally come to Shibui Bonsai and many of the deciduousĀ bonsai have lost leaves. I always find this a great time of year because I now get to see the underlying structure of branches and twigs that make up my bonsai. I now get the opportunity to assess the branch structure that has been hidden by a dense canopy of leaves for several months and to begin winter pruning and refinement. Continue reading

Another twisted shimpaku

The recent workshop with Joe Morgan-Payler has re-inspired me to keep developing these small, contorted junipers.

While not everyone appreciates this style of bonsai, especially here in Australia where our relatively mild climate does not produce such trees in the mountains, they seem to be valued by Japanese bonsai artists. These trees simulate the types of trunks that the severe winters and harsh growing conditions in the Japanese mountains naturally produce.

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JBP first styling

Today I worked on a Japanese Black pine. It was grown from seed about 10 years ago and I kept it because it has a really good 360 degrees root system that should develop into great pine nebari. Despite having such a great root system the top has not developed particularly well so I have not given it much attention so it is a good candidate to show how I go about making initial styling decisions. Continue reading