Analyzing Unfortunate Deaths

Posted by on Sep 27, 2017 in Articles And Stories, Eric's Blog
Analyzing Unfortunate Deaths

It’s an emotional blow to lose a bonsai. Seasoned growers may claim that they have never had a tree die on them, but the reality is that everyone loses trees. This past year has been a tough one for me; but I plan to learn from the trees that have escaped me so that I […]

Cherry Blossom Roundup

Posted by on Apr 27, 2017 in Articles And Stories, Eric's Blog
Cherry Blossom Roundup

The Cherry Blossoms this year on street trees around San Francisco put on a much better than normal show, blossoming profusely after a winter of heavy rain and slightly colder than normal conditions. Even during the Cherry Blossom show there were drifts of discarded petals on the streets, congregating against curbs in eddies in the […]

Overwintering spring – the year without a show

Posted by on Apr 5, 2017 in Articles And Stories, Eric's Blog
Overwintering spring – the year without a show

For the last couple weeks I’ve been enjoying the spring growth on my trees. The winter weather this year was apparently beneficial for the trees and we are now seeing the results. For as much as I can enjoy the beauty itself, that enjoyment also reminds me of walking the halls of the Flower and […]

Bernard Marque on Repotting

Posted by on Feb 1, 2017 in Articles And Stories, Eric's Blog
Bernard Marque on Repotting

For our January 2017 meeting BSSF kicked off the year by inviting Bernard Marque, a long-time BSSF member to demonstrate repotting for the group. Bernard has recently taken over the helm in teaching bonsai basics II for the club which is the repotting portion of bonsai basics. Bernard began the evening by mentioning some of […]

Critical Thinking on Repotting

Posted by on Dec 28, 2016 in Eric's Blog
Critical Thinking on Repotting

Bonsai instruction frequently is quite prescriptive; this is perhaps the preference of both teachers and students to avoid confusion on a dizzying array of topics. But what if you could move past instruction to rely on your own instincts when it comes to all these topics? Having recently started unschooling (look it up) my eleven […]

Digging Into Some Fall Work

Posted by on Oct 18, 2015 in Eric's Blog, From the President
Digging Into Some Fall Work

Fall can be one of the busiest times in bonsai, with many trees needing cleanup and work to look their best. While repotting during winter will take just as much time, it is not as much a part of the creative process as fall wiring and styling. The initial styling of a tree is often […]

Reflections on The Artisans Cup

Posted by on Oct 5, 2015 in Articles And Stories, Eric's Blog
Reflections on The Artisans Cup

I left San Francisco at 7am on the Wednesday morning before The Artisans Cup to drive over to Alameda to meet up with Jonas Dupuich. Among other things we were taking my grafted California Juniper and accompanying pieces up to Portland, Oregon for the show. Both Jonas and I were happy that most of the […]

Shohin Considerations

Posted by on Aug 24, 2014 in Articles And Stories, Eric's Blog
Shohin Considerations

Shohin trees are those that are in the range about 3″ tall to about 8″ tall. While there are multiple size classification systems, the Nippon Bonsai Association recognizes that Shohin are trees up to 20 cm, which converts to about 8″ for us Americans. It is also commonly accepted that the tree not be too […]

Renewing a Utah Juniper’s styling

Posted by on Mar 10, 2013 in Articles And Stories, Blogs, Eric's Blog
Renewing a Utah Juniper’s styling

“Wiring” it has been said “is bonsai, and bonsai is wiring.”    I find the process of styling  a tree to bring out the best qualities to be highly satisfying.     For this small Utah Juniper this was the second time that I wired every branch to bring the shape from a bunch of unruly looking branches […]

Do what Jim said…

Posted by on Apr 19, 2009 in Blogs, Eric's Blog

If there is one thing that stuck in my mind from the Yamadori-style juniper workshop that Jim Gremel provided for our April general meeting it’s this quote: “one experiment is worth a thousand opinions.”  Of course this is nothing new to many people; you can poll all the bonsai experts in the world and get […]