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Another introduction to bonsai: Creating miniaturized trees in shallow pots

  • Jul 19, 2014 · 10:00 AM
  • This location is shown only to members

The number of members signing up for the bonsai class scheduled for July 12 quickly reached the maximum number who can attend. The class is being repeated on July 19 so that those members who had been on the waiting list for the first class can now submit a new RSVP to attend the second class instead. Here's a revised description of the event:

Club member Ed French has been raising bonsai trees for years in the pool cage behind the home he and Kathy have in the Naples community called Plantation. On the morning of Saturday, September 19, Ed will give us a presentation about the ancient Japanese art and science of bonsai. We'll learn some techniques for creating a miniature landscape on a tabletop by keeping trees dwarfed in tiny pots.

Note that Ed and Kathy would like to limit attendance this time to just twelve members. (We've had up to 53 people attending previous events.) To let the hosts know if you will or won't attend, scroll up to the RSVP link near the top right corner of the screen, and click either Yes or No. If your plans change, be sure to return to this page to revise your reply. There will be no waiting list beyond the twelve members who can attend.

The beauty of bonsai lies in creating the appearance of mature full-sized trees in a natural landscape, but keeping them only one or two feet tall. This can be accomplished by confining the roots in a very small container, trimming them appropriately to limit the tree's growth. The branches are also pruned, and can be bent with copper wires when young to shape them, as if the trees were ancient and just surviving on a wind-swept mountain.

We'll learn the best species of trees to adapt for bonsai, the various planting styles, the proper mixes of soil for each species, how frequently to water and fertilize them, how to add rocks and mosses to enhance the pot's landscape, how to care for the trees in each season, how and when to re-pot them, and many more techniques. What you learn could lead you eventually to create bonsai as beautiful as the trees in these photos.

By clicking on this green link to our web site's Photos section, you'll see an album of pictures that Ed took of a dozen trees he's currently raising . You'll meet the trees in person at this event, when Ed will answer all your questions about creating bonsai. He and Kathy will also conduct a guided tour of their garden to show what other plants you can grow in your own.

During the informal snack-and-chat portion of the meeting, you'll enjoy the foods and drinks that members bring to share. Many members also bring their excess plants for the free plant-exchange table, and take home other plants for their own gardens. Membership has its privileges.

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  • frany

    question. You have the bonsai class and the soil class on the 19th. ???

    July 13, 2014

    • Richard L O.

      There are as many opinions about bonsai soil as there are bonsai practitioners. With that said, my opinion is to use a soil that has no soil. I use a mixture of Turface and fine pine bark on my younger trees and a mixture of crushed lave and crushed pumice on my more established trees. This necessitates frequent fertilization with mild water soluble fertilizer as the soil is void of nutrients, about once a week in the growing season. There are always exceptions such as evergreens like junipers which are treated different.

      1 · July 16, 2014

    • Bonnie Breedlove H.

      Hi Fran, The 2 clubs do sometime have meetings on the same day. Some people are in both clubs most are not.

      1 · July 21, 2014

  • Ed and K.

    Thank you very much for bring danish, it was very thoughtful. Ed and I had a really nice time with everyone who attended. Thank you.

    1 · July 20, 2014

  • Michelle F.

    Ed and Kathy were such warm hosts with an amazing collection of Bonsai trees. They patiently shared their knowledge with us and it was a really nice gathering of other gardeners, some new to Bonsai, like myself, and some also generously sharing their know-how. I can't thank them enough and would love a chance to do it all again!

    1 · July 20, 2014

  • Howard and Joyce W.

    Very informative with a step by step demo preparing and transplanting a small tree.

    1 · July 19, 2014

  • alice t.

    Extremely well done . Nice neighbors. Pleasant morning learning about bonsai. Alice and Dick Thorne

    1 · July 19, 2014

  • Richard L O.

    I attended my first meeting and it was great fun. Ed and Kathy are great hosts and Ed has an in depth understanding of bonsai and a very nice collection. Ed's display is second to none.

    1 · July 19, 2014

  • A former member
    A former member

    I would have really liked to attend but have plans this weekend. Let me know if you'll be doing it again in the future.

    1 · July 13, 2014

  • Claire M.

    A second meeting is very generous. I am grateful to be included for this weekend. I go to Colorado next week so would have had to miss the second group. You can surely tell this is such a popular subject. I'm really looking forward to it.c.

    2 · July 7, 2014

  • Tami

    Looking forward to this! Thank you!

    1 · July 6, 2014

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