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Clever Bonsai Marketing and Backyard Bonsai
May 17, 2017
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Clever Bonsai MarketingWhen Michael Levin at Bonsai West in Littleton, MA announced new classes he posted this photo! It gets your attention and tells the story ...
Yes, there will be evening bonsai classes!
When looking at an empty bonsai pot, it's sometimes difficult to imagine how your tree may look in it.
Bonsai Garden of William Valavanis
We've all seen pictures of amazing bonsai gardens in Japan, professionally created public gardens around the world and special displays such as Bill's above. They are certainly inspirational!
I saw this photo of Richard Green's "backyard" on Facebook and wondered if he was in business. I also thought, it must take several people to maintain such a collection (over 200 plants.)
When I emailed Richard, he was quick to admit his deep passion for bonsai and was generous with his details.
" ...bonsai has always been a very serious hobby. My trees are kept in my small yard by me. I've never had any help ... I try not to think of them as having a financial value."
Richard is a member of a study group taught by Boon Manakitivipart and you can tell from the picture, his trees are healthy and well cared for.
"About 30 years ago I stopped buying trees grown by other people. So about 95% of all my trees were grown and styled by me from seed, cuttings, airlayer and young mail order bare root seedlings." Green told me that every year he "weeds through the collection to see which ones he can do without." (Many bonsai hobbyists could learn from this habit.)
"Every season brings on it's special flow of necessary daily tasks. Transplanting and watering are big one's. On a warm dry summer day it takes me 2.5 hours to water everything correctly. I water everything by hand. It allows me to look at each and every tree. Maybe that's why I don't have a insect problem.
As you can imagine this collection takes time and commitment! With organization and passion, it's amazing what one man can do!
Poles and Pedestals
In addition to benches, there are many types of poles and pedestals.
When I moved to the property in Homestead (where we eventually had The Bonsai Bench nursery,) we were blessed with many old telephone poles. Cut to different sizes, they made perfect display stands.
The most important thing to know about high stands is, your bonsai need to be tied down! Don't ever think your bonsai pot is heavy enough.
BonsaiMary Gets MailBob Wertz - Oakland Park, FL
... I have found great material for bonsai stands. They are colored and textured concrete pavers that I have purchased from Home Depot on an as needed basis. The actual size is 11 1/2" square and 2 1/2" thick. I have stacked them anywhere from 2 high to 18 high depending on my personal desires.
I use a single stack for smaller plants, 2 wide for larger plants and 2 by 2 for an extra large tree. I choose to top most of mine with a 16" square x 1 1/4" travertine tile/paver, or a 16" x 24" for the double stacks. Although not necessary, it does add a little more aesthetic value. I also use them to support my shelves. They are a lot more decorative than the typical concrete masonry units.
This method may seem a little expensive, however they are extremely sturdy, storm proof, do not deteriorate as wood does and do not require concrete footings.
Bob sent several pictures, there were high, low and double stacks ... this was my favorite.
Nick Apostol - Ft. Lauderdale, FL
"Please include balconies in you Bonsai Backyards article. I am limited to a balcony and would like to see how others do with theirs.
You can see from Nick's photo, he definitely has very little space.
If you're successfully growing bonsai on a balcony, please send me photos!
Where There's a Will . . .
Nick, I'm not sure this is what you had in mind, but I had to share!
I found this Japanese balcony picture in my old photo file.
I can just imagine the owner saying to him/herself
"If I can only fit one, it's going to be a good one!"
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