The NIBS hosted another Bonsai school last weekend with Peter Snart of Willowbog Bonsai. I was glad to be able to attend the Saturday session with 20 or so other members. There was also an opportunity to stock up on some much needed bonsai pots etc.
The day was split into 3 parts as usual with the first session being a general talk/discussion of general issues raised and was very interesting. The second and third sessions were devoted to the theory group plantings and in the third and Peter gave a group planting demo using Picea Albertiana Conica.
I thought I would post a few pics but if you want a comprehensive account of the two days you will find this on Bonsai Eejit’s blog.
Various trees to be used in the arrangement but I’m not sure about that short stubbly thing in the middle
Peter looking for inspiration
The first root ball exposed in the process of reducing it to a usable size bearing in mind that the tree will probably never be bare rooted in this way again as once the planting is completed the trees will merge into once large root mass. Peter emphasised that it was therefore necessary to get it right at this stage. In view of the fact that there were so many trees being used Peter had prepared the rest before he left home to reduce the work load during the demo.
Trimming off the lower branches of the main tree for the group
Ian lending a hand to place the trees on the slab
The exposed edge of the slab was finished with Japanese Keto which I understand is a mix of clay and peat. as can be seen this acts as a wall to contain the growing medium and help water retention. the growing mix was eased into the tree roots using chop sticks.
This shot of the finished arrangement was borrowed from Ian’s blog
In time, with future training, this could be a nice arrangement . There was a lot of work involved in this, probably 3 1/2 hours non stop, plus the time spent in preparation before he came, so thanks to Peter for a helpful and informative experience.
Sorry i wasn’t able to be there for the workshop.