It’s been a busy few weeks around here. We did a couple of shows and some demo’s. I also finally got our new Terrier sorted out, it’s a ground breaking new tool that turns your small hobby tool or Dremel into a wood eating monster. Watch this space. Primarily however we have been working some of our trees. This time of year is always a bit quiet on the order front as everyone braces themselves for the silly Christmas season. Living on the coast the weather is very mild at this time of year and with leaves falling it’s time to get some styling work done.
It is becoming increasingly difficult and expensive to source good bonsai trees. Gone are the days of unlimited cheap Japanese imports as the government tries to wreck the business. As a result we are increasingly having to focus on producing our own bonsai. I have written here before I am forever amazed that so many folk do not buy raw unworked material considering the initial cheapness of such plants. Also the sense of satisfaction and reward of creating your own bonsai is immense not to mention the fact it’s entirely possible to double the value of a tree within a year. I do appreciate a lot of folk feel they lack the skills to complete such work but if you don’t try you are guaranteed to fail. In my experience most folk with a modicum of experience can do much more that they might initially think. The trick is to start on something cheap and go from there. Buying a £40 stump won’t financially ruin most of us and even if the results are appalling and you throw it away the lessons learned are worth much more that the price paid. Failure is not a reason to give up. I used to make some pretty ugly trees and killed more than a few but I just kept going, every tree worked is new experience in the bank and after a while it starts to add up.
We have a lot of raw material here. There are normally a couple of hundred trees listed on our web site but we never have less than 1500 to 2000 plants on the nursery. After a while I get fed up with looking at some of it and we make a concerted effort to get plants worked. It never ceases to amaze me, we have a beautiful piece of raw material sitting around for years and they never get a second look. We spend a few hours roughing out the trees shape, the price goes up and folk clamour to buy them. I suppose what’s even more odd is that I don’t make more time to get the work done, it’s my living after all. Having written this I think I should shut up and go do some work!
Anyhow, Rammon and I have been busy these last few weeks roughing out a few of our trees so here are a few images of some of the work.
Some really excellent trees here.
It’s great to see we have a sustainable future and will rely less on Japan. You are leading the way on European trees 🙂
That taxus looks even better in real life I can tell you:)
I am taking your advice and buying a yamadori tree from you to get some experience in carving it is a cheap privet so I can have a real go at it before I work on a couple of good trees I already own so thanks for you videos which are very helpful
Bought the little pine in photo # 10 cracking tree , just love it!!
I really miss your youtube videos
Self-sufficiency in raw materials for bonsai is being pushed by the bonsai movement here in the US. Not because of the government, but the consensus here is that we want to be not dependent on one particular source for our bonsai and to use native materials that are specific to our many regions. The logic is, why struggle helping a plant survive in an environment where it never had evolved to thrive in. It also gives an opportunity to create a unique look and style to our bonsai. Thanks for the inspiration Graham.