Memory Lane – Newstead 3 2008 Pines on show

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 – Newstead 3  2008 Pines on show
This was our third Newstead show so by now we were really getting into the swing of things. I suppose you could say we now knew what we were doing so it should be easier but then again…….each show had to be better than the one before, each show had to be different, a new display garden, different and better trees.
You could say it just got harder and harder……but each time we managed to pull it off……thanks to all my dedicated helpers, and to the many exhibitors who somehow just managed to keep finding different and better trees for the enjoyment of our many visitors.
I have to say 2008 was a good year for pines. We had some very big pines and some tiny ones. We had White Pines, Black Pines, Red Pines, Scots Pines and even a Shore Pine.
We had some pines new to the show bench vying for glory amongst their more illustrious experienced neighbours…….and some of their neighbours really were quite famous….
We had a pine that had been shown at the prestigious Kokufu exhibition in Japan, another pine had come from the nursery of Shinji Suzuki’s father, whilst another had once been with Daizo Iwasaki in Japan.
One impressive pine had been created by Dan Barton whilst another from Craig Coussin’s  collection had a very notable history.
Some of our pines had a very natural style, some were on or clinging to rocks, some came with a very strong Japanese style. each pine had a striking beauty in it’s own right and was proudly there for all to see and admire.
So I have given you all the information you need now all you have to do is try and guess which pine is which!!!
IMG_4421p1 IMG_4423p2 IMG_4428p1 IMG_4445p1 IMG_4449p1 IMG_4463p1 IMG_4464p1 IMG_4478p1 IMG_4479p1 IMG_4480p1 IMG_4511p1 IMG_4522p1 IMG_4525p1 IMG_4526p1 Newstead 2008 007 Newstead 2008 010 Newstead 2008 221 Newstead 2008 222
Don’t worry if you are not sure, just enjoy the memory and the bonsai artist’s expertise…..forget everything else that was there over the weekend the pines alone were well worth the visit!

Studio Stories – A Tale of Three Junipers (Part One)

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 – A Tale of Three Junipers (Part One)

These three Juniper Chinensis all originated from Japan and are of similar size appearance and condition. They were ready for re-styling and appeared in the studio on separate visits but within weeks of one another.

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IMG_1181IMG_0887They were all appraised with the view of trying to get the best out of what was available. How they changed will be detailed in this and two subsequent posts.

In the case of the first Juniper the trunk was quite heavy with problems in it’s taper especially where it forked into two branches high up in the tree.

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To rectify his problem involved changing the front slightly, selecting the best trunk line, and creating some deadwood to improve the line of taper.

Once branch selection had been completed the foliage was thinned out and all remaining branches were wired enabling the unkempt form to be replaced by a more tree-like triangular silhouette.

The student wanted to portray the tree in a landscape setting using rocks he had collected. A shallow oval pot was chosen and rocks were selected and placed accordingly.

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The tree was potted in a mix of 50/50 akadama and bims. The appearance of this bonsai will be totally transformed simply by the addition of some moss.

Our next visit to the studio will feature the second Juniper pictured above.

Latest News – New Class Dates released Aug-Dec 2013 (Updated 4th July)

At last they are here ……the new class dates for our Autumn Winter schedule 2013.

You will find them under courses in Bonsai Classes and Information.

I hope there is something for everyone within this schedule. There are plenty of general workshops and a couple of extra time specials for those of you seeking a bit more attention.

Specific species classes are covered with Junipers, Maples, Larch, and Taxus.

There are technique days on deadwood/carving and wiring.

Bonsai aesthetics is a newcomer for those of you interested in improving your bonsai styling.

…….and of course there is a Christmas Special……..Juniper Ittogawa selected and available on nursery for you to reserve. Two options – £110 and £495.

I am really looking forward to continuing our bonsai journey in the second half of the year so take a look, see what you fancy and contact us to reserve your place.

Best bonsai wishes…….

john.

Topical Times – Nursery Sales

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

Topical Times – Nursery Sales

More visitors are attracted to the nursery with the outbreak of better weather and the trees are responding accordingly with a fine show of foliage.

Specialising in bonsai and Japanese garden supplies we have a large and varied selection of suitable material available.

The bonsai range from cheap starter material (both indoor and outdoor trees) to specimen bonsai trees and everything in between. We have an extensive collection of raw and part-trained material for every level of enthusiast.

For those looking to add a Japanese touch to their garden we have a selection of granite lanterns, Japanese cloud trees, and larger trees/shrubs.

The pictures below present a very small selection of some of the material we currently have available.

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Latest News – Online shop problem sorted!

I am pleased to inform you that everything now appears to be working fine with our online shop and payments can be processed quickly and successfully.

I can only apologise for any difficulties some of you may have experienced.

Should any such problems arise in the future please do not hesitate to contact us directly so that we can sort out your order and rectify the problem.

Thank you.

Classroom Corner – Grafting/Air Layering Class June 2013

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 – Grafting/Air Layering Class June 2013
Seven students attended our first dedicated grafting/air layering class recently. Three students wanted to watch, discuss and learn whilst four students started up projects.
The practicalities of these techniques were first discussed. We are now using both these techniques quite extensively on the nursery and with great success. Both methods can be extremely rewarding and are well worth mastering.
In this instance the complete ring bark method of air layering was used in preference to the tourniquet method.
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Keith had acquired these Blaauws Junipers as young plants when we were at Staincross and had been growing them on in the ground. He now planned to take multiple air layers to provide him with some very useful material, capable of creating a forest or being used for grafting/wrap-around projects.
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Paul’s Scarlet Hawthorn bonsai are not easy to come by so Ralph decided to create his own. He had acquired a suitable tree from a garden nursery and could now obtain two potential bonsai by air layering and still have a tree to plant in the garden if he so wished.
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Johnathan’s Blue Carpet Juniper had an interesting shari and twist but the foliage was very leggy and at the end of a straight section which contradicted the general movement in the trunk. He grafted on a young Juniper with tighter foliage and we positioned it so as to give an extra twist and follow a more natural progression of the trunk line.
IMG_1318Richard’s garden Juniper had excellent potential for creating extensive deadwood around an impressive trunk line but the foliage on all branches was over two feet away from the base of the tree. He grafted on a young Juniper nearer the base of the tree to create a pleasing trunk shape and enable us to have a much smaller bonsai with a single live vein and extensive deadwood/shari.
Everyone is already looking forward to seeing how these projects develop in the future. The trouble is you often become too excited, can’t wait and intervene too early. The secret,  especially with grafting is patience!!!……..let nature take it’s course.
I suspect this innovative class will now be a permanent fixture in my bonsai class schedules especially once other students see the results. I will keep you posted.

Memory Lane – Nobutaka Sakuma Newstead 2006

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 – Nobutaka Sakuma  Newstead 2006
In September 2006 we held our second Newstead Bonsai Extravaganza and this time we had invited a Japanese bonsai master to join us.
Nobutaka Sakuma arrived at Manchester airport on the Thursday evening welcomed by me and my daughter. It was to be quite a weekend……he spoke no english whatsoever and I spoke even less japanese. Fortunately my daughter had bought us “Japanese for Dummies” ….and I suspect it was tailor made for me!!!
Nobutaka was to carry out demonstrations on the Saturday and Sunday. He had selectedIMG_1830p specially some ibigawa rocks in Japan and these had been shipped over at the beginning of the year. When these arrived it was a case of WOW!… these were the best I had ever seen. When the invoice arrived a few weeks later it was an even bigger “**??**!!” WOW!!!
He spent most of Friday selecting suitable planting material from our sales benches and preparing balls of keto to act as the planting medium. In the evening my good friend Danny Use arrived from Belgium to help with the demos and translation.
The pictures below will give you an insight into the excellent rock landscapes he created and to those of you fortunate enough to be there, a nostalgic reminder. It was a privilege to have Danny and Nobutaka at our event and I am sure everyone who attended enjoyed their efforts.
It cost me a lot of money to bring a demonstrator over from Japan but it was something I had always wanted to do. I have always believed that the future of Bonsai in this country lies in Japan and what we can learn from them. In giving my students and visitors the opportunity to learn directly from a Japanese bonsai master I had achieved one of my ambitions.
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Latest News – Online shop problem?

We are aware that there has been a problem with our online shop in processing your payment. Please bare with us while we resolve this issue.

In the meantime if you wish to make a purchase and are experiencing difficulty please telephone the nursery and we can complete the transaction online.

Thank you for your patience.

Studio stories – Pruning Catchup

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 – Pruning Catchup

With the outbreak of warm weather last week and the prospect of decent weather to follow it was a good time to catch up on some pruning especially with trees finally showing signs of good growth.

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The award winning Mountain Maple with it’s amazing nebari was now dense with foliage and shooting strongly. The tree has become really vigorous since being transferred from it’s “show” pot into a deeper growing pot.

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“Big John” my heavy trunk Trident Maple was now a substantial bush and ready for a drastic cleaning out.

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My Lonicera was almost unrecognisable. This tree needed taking back to very basics for the good of it’s health and to define it’s future shape/structure. A few weeks later and it is budding out everywhere.

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This Satsuki Azalea was in poor condition when I acquired it. We repotted it into a plastic training pot and it is making good progress. So now we removed all the flowers and pruned the long bare shoots back to promote new growth nearer the trunk.

 

Topical Times – Flowers outside….Poltergeist inside?

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

Topical Times – Flowers outside….Poltergeist inside?

Summer appears to have arrived this week…..at last!…….but what happened to spring? I

Tree Peony

Tree Peony

must have blinked and missed it? The trees certainly missed it……

Some trees repotted at the usual times have struggled because instead of growing away and recovering from the disturbance they have had to sit for a prolonged period in some seriously cold and miserable weather.

Timing of heavy pruning and leaf defoliation becomes much more critical when the weather is so unpredictable and unseasonably cold.

Hosta

Hosta

Clematis

Clematis 

Hawthorn - Paul's Scarlet

Hawthorn – Paul’s Scarlet

 

 

 

 

 

Deshojo Maple

Deshojo Maple

 

 

 

 

 

 

Nature is more than capable of catching up and strong trees have grown vigorously once they have been able to get started.  You could say these pine candles are ready for pinching….

Pinus Sylvestris

Pinus Sylvestris

Pinus Sylvestris

Pinus Sylvestris

 

 

 

 

 

I suppose the next big question will be how long is it going to last?…..will we look back and say that this week was in fact THE summer!…….hopefully there will be many more days and who knows even weeks to come ( always was a bit of a dreamer! )

Hidden statue

Hidden statue

Rhododendron

Rhododendron

 

 

 

 

 

For some of us this weather is just too much…

Benny takes a breather

Benny takes a breather

Who...how...why....?

Who…how…why….?

 

 

 

 

 

 

If things are getting back to normal outside……the same certainly can’t be applied inside!….

Wednesday morning….notice the neat precise stack of three CD’s and the gap in the middle shelf above from where they came…..impossible to fall out and be so arranged.

The thing is neither me nor my wife are responsible…..so unless my cat or dogs have hidden talents how could this happen????

This follow a series of similar occurrences……lights coming on simultaneously but untouched……..a picture moving across a room……..a clock moving from one place to another, stopping and then starting again………..

Are we sharing our home with a poltergeist or some other strange phenomenon?……how else do you explain these happenings……..I look forward to hearing from you….and no I have not had too much sun……but just make sure you and your trees get some while it’s still here!!!