Fundraising for Bonsai Garden at Lake Merritt

The Bonsai Garden at Lake Merritt has been raising funds for its Garden Revitalization Opportunity (GRO) Project. This project aims to upgrade the display benches and stands, watering system, pathways, and much more, in order to meet the challenges of caring for and maintaining the historic and legacy bonsai collection in a professional and museum quality manner.

As part of this, they have initiated a recognition brick fundraiser drive in which individuals, clubs and businesses can purchase a variety of state of the art engraved bricks, and the proceeds will go towards the GRO Project. GRO projects include laying cement pavers for all pathways within the Bonsai Garden, and the engraved bricks will line a special pathway.

For information http://www.gsbf-lakemerritt.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/09/Bonsai-Garden-of-Lake-Merritt-Brick-Flyer-09-11-17.pdf

-George Haas

Update: Bonsai Garden at Lake Merritt (BGLM) Garden Revitalization Opportunity (GRO)

Great news – the Bonsai Garden at Lake Merritt (BGLM) Garden Revitalization Opportunity (GRO) Project ended August 2017 by raising 45% towards its goal of $100,000. New vertical, straight grain red cedar benches and stands have been installed to replace the original bonsai display benches and stands. There have been more than two thirds of the new overhead water systems using the new micro cone sprayers installed to replace the old drip irrigation piping. Copper metal sculpture artwork has been added to the accent display site with its own water system. In October, plans call for the installment of cement pavers for all the pathways. This will eliminate muddy and dusty conditions and make it more accessible and safer for the public. Needless to say, exciting things are taking place at the BGLM. Look for new fundraising ideas coming this month. BGLM thanks everyone for their support.

34th REBS Annual Show Photos

The 34th Redwood Empire Bonsai Society (REBS) Annual Show was held on August 26 and 27, 2017, at the Santa Rosa Veterans Memorial Building, in Santa Rosa, California. The club exhibition displayed 208 bonsai and a large display of suiseki (viewing stones), courtesy of the San Francisco Suiseki Kai.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

 

34th REBS Annual Show

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

On August 26 & 27, 2017, Redwood Empire Bonsai Society (REBS) held their 34th Annual Bonsai Show at the Veterans Memorial Building in Santa Rosa, California. It took all day on Friday, August 25, to set-up display tables, the Bonsai Café, members and vendors sales areas. Show hours were 9:00am to 4:00pm for members sales, 10:00am to 5pm on Saturday and 10:00am to 4:00pm on Sunday. Demonstrations by Kathy Shaner were conducted both days from 1:00 to 3:30pm. Raffle followed each demonstration with Johnathon Burton winning a Sierra Juniper and Dan Mannion winning a Cork Oak. Upon closing Sunday, it took about two hours to tear-down and clear the building. Another two hours or so to return show materials and supplies to storage. Stay tuned for individual displays.

REBS 34th Annual Bonsai Show

August 26 & 27, 2017
Santa Rosa Veterans Memorial Building

Saturday, 26 August 2017 – 10 am – 5 pm
Sunday, 27 August 2017 – 10 am – 4 pm

Featuring Bonsai Master Artist Kathy Shaner
Bonsai demonstrations both days 1 – 3 pm

Demonstration trees to be raffled

* See the largest bonsai exhibition
* Large bonsai vendor area
* Large member trees area
* Exciting silent auctions or “buy it now”
* Free admission and parking
* Free refreshments by the Bonsai Cafe

Santa Rosa Veterans Memorial Building
1351 Maple Avenue
Santa Rosa, California

For information, contact Bob Shimon at
707-884-4126 or email shimon@mcn.org

– George Haas

Redwood Empire Bonsai Society (REBS) Meeting & Demonstration – August 22, 2017

Club Sensei Kathy Shaner performed a varied demonstration involving preparations for the upcoming 34th Annual Bonsai Show on August 26 and 27, 2017, and hands-on developing of two species, one being an oak and the other being two trident maples.

Preparations of show bonsai was more a discussion conducted by Kathy and show chair Bob Shimon. Some key steps to take to prepare your bonsai for the show included the most critical one of watering the bonsai a couple of days before bringing the bonsai in to the show venue. The bonsai will be indoors on display from set up on Friday, August 25 through the end of the day on Sunday, August 27. Volunteers will water periodically during the show. However, adequate hydration beforehand will keep the bonsai under minimal stress. Since the show is indoors, it is customary to top dress the soil of your bonsai with moss or a top dressing of very small sieved or screened particles of lava (black, red, brown) rock and Akadama. Avoid white pumice in the mix. This step will make for a clean appearance. When applying moss, try for a smooth and level look, and avoid the appearance of mounds and valleys. Oil the pots (walnut oil) lightly and wipe it dry so that the oil does not mark the paper covered display tables. Clean and wax your bonsai stands or slabs in a similar manner. Take time to look over the bonsai and remove any debris such as dead leaves, branches, spider webs, etc.

Kathy proceeded to work on an oak bonsai. The bonsai was wired in February of this year and it was time to remove the wire. After removing all the copper wire from the oak, she began to look at the tree design. She wanted to style the oak as a semi cascade or slanting tree. The trunk was large and very interesting, but the tree foliage and trunk appeared to like movement in a slanting style. The pot was shallow and not suitable for a slanting tree. Repotting the bonsai would be best done in January of next year. In the meantime, Kathy chose to prop up one side of the tree and root system using chopsticks and adding more soil mix. The slanting position was ideal. Kathy discussed the oak bonsai would require adequate water and full sun. It would be a small to medium size bonsai. She also discussed the fact that a shallow pot holds more water than a deeper pot. If overwatering becomes a problem, you can always prop up one side of a shallow pot to help in drainage. The oak bonsai was potted three years ago. Kathy said a bonsai style should have a story behind it to explain why it was slanting. In this case, the oak bonsai could have been growing near a stream or on the side of a hill. She applied some copper wire to the oak bonsai, lowering some of the branches in a slanting movement. She also removed unwanted branches, but not many. Kathy recommended a round or half-moon pot, but no square pot. In wiring the oak, Kathy demonstrated soft wiring by using her thumb or two fingers to guide the wire wrapped around the branches. This wire can remain in place for some time before cutting in to the bark.

Kathy then switched to working on the two trident maples. She showed how to achieve over time short internodes on the maples by removing the central new forming leaves as soon as they appear and allowing two new buds to form as leaves. This new leaf removal is repeated throughout the growing season in order to form branches with very short internodes. The first trident maple was a single trunk, tall and graceful with its foliage mostly on top, but also lower in the trunk. Kathy cut the top of the trunk off the tree. She ensured the cut was only slightly angled, clean, and flat. There were three buds near the cut to be protected from any damage. She then wrapped and sealed the cut, including the three buds, with parafilm. (Parafilm M Roll, 125’ Length x 4” Width by Parafilm, available through Amazon or medical suppliers.) Kathy said the parafilm will keep moisture in place of the wound, help its healing and help the three buds grow. The buds will pop through the thin parafilm. Over time the parafilm will deteriorate and come off.

Kathy moved on to the two-trunk trident maple. She used a wine cork to slightly separate the two trunks at their bases. She then soft wired the smaller of the two trunks and applied some movement to the trunk. Again, she pointed out that the work went into developing short internodes. She demonstrated that as the weather changes in to the fall season and leaves turn color, it is a good time to remove the leaf leaving the petiole in place. The petiole contains sugars that will feed the root system even after the leaf is removed.

A raffle was held at the conclusion of the Kathy’s demonstration. The winner of the raffle had a choice of between the oak bonsai or one of the trident maples. Mike Nelson won the raffle and chose the oak bonsai as his prize, adding a fine bonsai to his personal collection.

Redwood Empire Bonsai Society (REBS) Intermediate Workshops

REBS’ certified instructors, Ivan Lukrich and Richard Hoskins, lead the Intermediate Workshops. Prerequisite: Completion of the beginners’ class or basic knowledge of bonsai and wiring. This is an opportunity for members to work on their own bonsai. You’ll need to bring your own tools, wire, soil mixes, etc.

The next Intermediate Workshop is scheduled to meet on September 21 @ 7:00 pm – 10:00 pm, at the Bennett Valley Senior Center, 704 Bennett Valley Road, Room 16, Santa Rosa, CA.

If interested, stop by and observe a workshop.

REBS members taking advantage of the Intermediate Workshop to work on their bonsai. Photos courtesy of Ivan Lukrich, August 17, 2017.

Blast from the past!

The Redwood Empire Bonsai Society (REBS) created its first Annual Bonsai Show at the Veterans Memorial Building in Santa Rosa, California on October 21, 1984, featuring a then Club Sensei Mas Imazumi demonstration, raffle, door prizes, and no admission fee.

That first bonsai exhibition may have been displaying a small quantity of bonsai and lasting only six hours in duration. By the next year, the annual show was expanded to seven hours and featured a similar demonstration, general raffle, special raffle, plants for sale, and refreshments.

Ever since that very first bonsai show, there have been other features added, including the additional day, Sunday. A large vendors area is well stocked, where one can buy bonsai, pre-bonsai, pots, stands, suiseki, books, tools, and other bonsai related items, plus accent plants. The large members sale area offers a wide variety of bonsai, pre-bonsai, stands, pots, and more. There is the Bonsai Café that offers refreshments. There are quality bonsai, bonsai related items, wine, and other donated gifts for silent auction or “Buy It Now”.

As the club membership grew, so did the annual show. Now in its 34th year, the annual show has expanded to become the largest, single club sponsored bonsai exhibition in the US.

The 34th REBS Annual Show will take place on August 26 and 27, 2017 and features the renown, certified Master Bonsai Artist and Instructor Kathy Shaner, as Club Sensei and demonstrator. The Veterans Memorial Building main hall currently exhibits more than 200 bonsai. There are additional Shohin (bonsai less than eight inches tall) on display, as well as Suiseki (viewing stones).

Kathy Shaner will demonstrate bonsai advanced techniques on quality material, both days, from 1-3pm. Demonstration material will be raffled upon completion of each demonstration. 

Annual BBQ & Picnic Recap

REBS members at our annual picnic on July 30, 2017.

 

On Sunday, July 30, 2017, the club’s members and guests enjoyed our annual BBQ & picnic at the Lone Pine Bonsai and Gardens in Sebastopol. Ian and Janet Price have hosted the club picnic at their home and gardens since the founding of Redwood Empire Bonsai Society (REBS) more than 30 years now. The weather in July can be very hot, but on picnic day it was cool and pleasant. The picnic afforded time to relax, socialize, enjoy good food and family recipes. Bob Shimon and Ned Lycett prepared BBQ tri-tip and chicken that is always outstanding.

 

Bob Shimon, Chief Chef, working the BBQ chicken.

 

Ned Lycett, Back up Chief Chef, working with a new BBQ set.

 

There was time to observe the Price’s gardens and bonsai nursery. Also, it was a good time to shop for bonsai and that perfect accent plant.

The picnic comes every year about one month before REBS’ annual bonsai show. So, it was a good time to have a conversation about who is showing what, obtain member sale tags for selling bonsai related items and bring up the subject of show tree forms, which provide our club sensei Kathy Shaner with a photo and description of all the show trees to be put on display. There is still time to make your decision on which trees to display, which to sell or donate and complete the essential forms.

This year we have a board meeting and general meeting before the annual show. These will take place on August 22, 2017, from 6:30 – 7:30 PM and 7:30 – 9:30 PM, respectively. That is a good date to set as a deadline for completing and turning over your forms. By the way, Kathy Shaner will be the demonstrator on August 22, and available to answer any questions you might have about the annual show.

– George Haas

 

REBS members enjoying a plate of BBQ and family recipes at our annual picnic.