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A Morning as a Bonsai Apprentice.

In California, we do things a little differently than in Japan.  We’re fortunate that our days aren’t grueling but enjoyable. We arrive early in the morning at the bonsai nursery and begin our set up for the day including laying out bonsai wire, preparing tables and turntables.  During a cold morning, we’ll sit around with a nice cup of coffee and discuss bonsai shows and upcoming events. ...

Why do Bonsai?

I was recently talking with friends and they asked my why I was so into bonsai.  Why would someone spend 5 hours to wire a tree, or wait years to develop a branch?   Thinking back when I first started, I didn’t quite understand it either.  Curious to see what others thought, I asked my fellow club members and students.  We all came to same conclusion. Enjoying bonsai is a therapeutic and stress relieving...

Working with your Tree’s Roots: The Right Tools for the Job

Working with your tree’s roots is sometimes a neglected task.  Most enthusiasts will concentrate on the foliage and trunk.  However, well maintained roots always lead to healthy foliage.  Below are some of the essential tools we use when working with our bonsai tree’s roots. Repotting Stick: During repotting season, the repotting stick is THE most often used tool.  When you remove the tree from a...

Trimming Roots: Will it kill my tree?

Trimming roots is a maintenance necessity that can sometimes cause anxiety.  However, trimming the roots of your tree when repotting will help your tree grow healthier and stronger. So what exactly do you cut and don’t cut: Your trees roots primarily consist of a tap root, the primary root, and several hair and feeder roots.  The first thing you will need to do is expose the roots by removing the soil.  We...

Base Layer: 3 Elements to Consider

Adding a base layer to your pot while repotting works wonders for your bonsai tree.  Not only does it prevent compaction, but it also prevents root rot by ensuring quality drainage.  So now that we know that a base layer is essential to a healthy bonsai tree, what should we look for when choosing one? Material: You’ll want to go with a large aggregate when choosing your base layer.  Commonly used materials...

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