Memory Lane – Juniper Ittogawa January 2013

Looking back….we can tell a tree’s story…..admire an image…..capture a moment…..remember a special event…..be inspired – to create a memory for tomorrow. I hope you enjoy this regular peep into some of John’s bonsai history.
Memory Lane – Juniper Ittogawa January 2013

Chris’s Juniper Ittogawa had been exhibited at our last Newstead Exhibition and had been extremely well received by visitors. It just looked so natural in this landscape setting surrounded by rocks and moss.

The tree had been brought along to a workshop for wiring and placement of the branches. A heavy branch near the crown was removed. Notice how precise and detailed the wiring is even on a small tree like this one.

Once the branches are positioned the tree looks much more compact and refined.

Classroom Corner – Thinning out….Spruce and Juniper

An open window into the comings and goings of students and their trees attending our regular weekend and midweek bonsai classes under the ever watchful eyes of John Hanby.
Classroom Corner – Thinning out …..Spruce and Juniper

These two trees were recently brought along to an open workshop for advice on the dense foliage canopies after a season of good growth. Kevin’s Spruce and Alan’s Juniper are two very good trees.

The Ezo Spruce originated in Japan and is very much in the old natural style of Bonsai. To try and restyle this tree with a more modern strict tree-like approach would destroy it’s character and diminish it’s quality.

It was a matter of selecting branches and twigs for removal to let more light/air into the canopy whilst at the same time refining the contours of the foliage clouds.

The Juniper Squamata Meyerii had been created from field grown stock and since it’s original styling the progress is simply remarkable. Alan had followed my instructions over the past few years really well which has resulted in a dense foliage canopy.

Once again extensive thinning out of branches,twigs and shoots was required to let more light and air into the tree. The branches can now be more clearly defined by another wiring which will then provide a more accurate guide for pinching during the next growing season.

The target now is for tighter more compact foliage clouds.

Two great trees to have in a workshop to discuss their progress, watch what happens and then see the plan for the next stage of development. But then this is what the classroom is all about…….together we learn!!

Topical Times – Andrews Juniper one to one…

A regular update on the life and times of John Hanby’s Newstead Bonsai Centre……..

Topical Times – Andrew’s Juniper one to one…

Just before Christmas Andrew visited the nursery for a one to one. Most of the day was to be spent on a substantial Juniper Parsonii.

The tree had been wired and styled before but the original work had now been out grown. Initial discussions again centred around the second smaller trunk…..should it stay or be removed?

When these discussions arise always remember it takes seconds to cut off that second trunk……but if we need to grow it again…….many years!! I also like the fact that this small second trunk gives the tree it’s character….it’s individuality! When this is removed the tree becomes just another informal upright Juniper.

The next thing to be checked was the deadwood. There were several areas where jins and shari could be extended or created. Some of these I marked with chalk.

I then cleaned out the foliage and removed all unwanted branches. The tree was then ready for rewiring. There was a lot of work to do so both of us worked quickly on the tree.

There was also a possible new front to consider…..this would be from the front right corner of the pot…..illustrated in the last two pictures. The view of the base of the tree is improved and the overall balance between the two trunks is better.

There is still some detailed wiring work to do but the basic restyling of the tree is complete. This is becoming a very impressive bonsai with a good canopy of foliage and tremendous character. That second trunk will always be an eye-catcher……now we must find the right pot to complement the design and enhance the image further.

 

Studio Stories – Its that Larch time of year again!

Sometimes I work on nursery trees, sometimes I work on client’s trees……and sometimes if I’ve been a really good boy I get to work on my own trees. Hopefully these regular visits will give you an insight into what goes on behind closed doors……….
Studio Stories – It’s that Larch time of year again!

The majority of Larch trees have now lost all their needles so it’s an ideal time for pruning and wiring. December and January is also the time when we start to repot Larch Bonsai on the nursery.

The pictures below show some of the Larch which have turned up on classes recently. It’s a bit like spot the difference……..hopefully you will be able to tell where the scissors have been!

 

Latest News – Merry Christmas and Sale Day Announcement

I would like to take this opportunity to wish all my bonsai students, customers, clients, and friends a Merry Christmas and a very Happy, Peaceful and Prosperous New Year.

If I don’t see you on the sale day I look forward to welcoming you all again to Newstead in 2018.

Best wishes and thank you for your amazing support especially with the sellout classes of 2017…….John Hanby.

SALE DAY – Thursday December 28th 2017 (10.00 – 3.00pm)

A ONE DAY ONLY opportunity to take advantage of a 20% Discount off all garden plants, raw material and bonsai trees.

All trees/plants must be paid for in full on the day to take advantage of the sale price. Ideally they should all be removed from the site on the day unless arrangements are made with John.

Regular visitors to the nursery will know that this is a genuine offer and for a limited time……it is for ONE DAY ONLY!

It is also a chance to socialise and renew bonsai friendships between Christmas and the New Year in pleasant and inspiring surroundings. Look forward to seeing you all!

Memory Lane – Is this the shape of things to come?

Looking back….we can tell a tree’s story…..admire an image…..capture a moment…..remember a special event…..be inspired – to create a memory for tomorrow. I hope you enjoy this regular peep into some of John’s bonsai history.
Memory Lane – Is this the shape of things to come?

The pictures below were taken in March 2013 and January 2015. Just looking at them brings an icy chill around you. Some of the pictures may have a certain charm to them but there is still that overriding sense of dread.

The last few winters have been very kind to us Bonsai lovers but it’s best that you don’t get complacent. Keep an eye on the forecasts and be prepared to protect your trees from the extremes of the weather.

Long periods of sub zero freezing temperatures is not good for your trees especially if this is accompanied by cold winds. Just remember it’s better to be safe than sorry!!

Classroom Corner – Case Study….Ians Juniper Squamata (1)

An open window into the comings and goings of students and their trees attending our regular weekend and midweek bonsai classes under the ever watchful eyes of John Hanby.
Classroom Corner – Case Study….Ians Juniper Squamata (1)

Case Study is a new feature you will find cropping up in several of my blogs. This is a pictorial record of a students tree over a period of time.

It gives you the opportunity to see how we go about developing our trees. The pictures were taken when the tree was brought to a class at my bonsai school.

Sometimes we work on the tree during a class session sometimes I just give the student advice on what to do next. The student does his work and then brings the tree back to another class when he is ready for further advice.

This Juniper has come such a long way in less than 12 months. The first pictures were taken on December 18th 2016 when we started work on the tree on our Christmas Special class.

The trunks have since been extensively carved whilst the branches have been wired prior to styling. The last pictures were taken recently on 4th November when the shari area was widened to take account of the tree narrowing it’s live veins. The bark to be removed was first marked with chalk.

Topical Times – Heathrow Bonsai Show Demo 2017

A regular update on the life and times of John Hanby’s Newstead Bonsai Centre……..

Topical Times – Heathrow Bonsai Show Demo 2017

The Heathrow Show took place this year on Sunday 22nd October and with over 30 clubs exhibiting and over 30 traders this was quite an event. Mark and Ming Moreland must take great credit for how this show has grown from year to year.

Mark had kindly invited me to demonstrate at the show. In the morning session I created a raft planting on a rock using a Juniper Communis. In the afternoon I gave a lecture using Juniper Bonsai at various stages of development.

You will find some before and after pictures of the morning demo below. If you want to see a video of the creation and also some videos from the afternoon session you will find links on my Facebook page.

 

Studio Stories – My Kiyohime Maple

Sometimes I work on nursery trees, sometimes I work on client’s trees……and sometimes if I’ve been a really good boy I get to work on my own trees. Hopefully these regular visits will give you an insight into what goes on behind closed doors……….
Studio Stories – My Kiyohime Maple 

You may recall that in an earlier blog this year we detailed the history of this tree. How it had suffered from frost damage as a garden tree and almost died.

I had resurrected the tree and been growing it in a large Bonsai pot. In Spring this year I repotted it into this new shallow cream container. The tree has done good!

Today I took off the remaining leaves, cut off all the dead pruning snags, and carried out a light pruning of the fine twigs where necessary. You can definitely see signs of improvement and refinement in this tree.

I hope this good progress will continue on his journey to the next level. It’s good to photograph your trees each year at this time so you can compare and monitor their progress.

The first three pictures were taken in Spring, the middle three were taken in June and the last three were taken in November…..all 2017.