June Meeting - tonight!

June 19, 2015 @ 7:00PM

Peter Tea

We're very pleased that this coming Friday Peter Tea will be our quest demonstrator! Peter will discuss and demonstrate how to care for black pine bonsai. The demo tree will be raffled off at the end of the meeting.

Peter has been a member of San Jose’s Midori Bonsai Club since 2002. Peter credits his early bonsai education to Boon Manakitivitpart having completed Boon's three-year Intensive Program. In 2011 Peter started his apprenticeship in Japan under Mr. Junihiro Tanaka at Aichien Gardens in Japan for what was suppose to be a five-year apprenticeship. Peter competed mastery of the skills in only two years.

Peter now provides collection management, demonstrations and private/group workshops all over the world. You can follow his blog at www.peterteabonsai.wordpress.com where he talks about working with black pine and Japanese maple as bonsai and his Japanese apprenticeship experiences.

Show and Tell

Bring pines, trees in flower, etc.

Club News

Officers and Board of Directors Elected for the 2015-2016 Term

At the May meeting the following officers and board of directors were elected and those present were sworn in. At our June meeting we will complete this election process. Terms are effective July 1.

  • Rita Curbow — President
  • John Mekisich — Vice President
  • Suresh ‘Mo’ Mohan — Treasurer
  • Dave Curbow — Recording Secretary
  • Chris Weigen — Corresponding Secretary
  • Donna Farmar — Continuing board member
  • Stephanie North — Continuing board member
  • Lynne O’Dell — Continuing board member (finishing out Mekisich term)
  • Richard Phillips — New board member
  • Alison Williams — New board member
  • Michael Greenstein — New board member

The club thanks Chris Weigen and Alison Williams who handled the nominations for new officers and board of directors.

Welcome New Members

The club kindly welcomes Ernst Meissner and Steve Kreiling who joined Kusamura during the past four months.

Bonsai Group Repot a Native Oak

In 2009, a group of volunteers from Kusamura was formed to care for the bonsai at Filoli. The group currently consists of Rita Curbow, Jerry Carpenter, Donna Farmar, Charlene Fischer, David Muir, Lynne O’Dell, Janet Refvem and Helen Reist. The group meets each Wednesday to work on the trees. Kusamura gets quite a lot of visibility amongst Filoli visitors and staff as a result of the groups work. Some fellow Filoli volunteers and staff have even attended our annual show the past few years.

In May 2012, Jerry and Rita helped a Filoli staff member dig up a native oak in the woods at Filoli with the intent of turning it into a bonsai that could be displayed in the Friends Garden at Filoli. This garden only contains native plants. This week, Jerry and Charlene repotted the oak in a glazed brown garden pot and started its journey into becoming a semi cascade bonsai. In a few years the tree can be downsized into an official bonsai pot that is of a desired height proportional to its trunk.

Note that this is the preferred time of year to repot and work on your oak bonsai as well as tropical bonsai and subtropical bonsai such as olives.

Charlene and Jerry working on a native oak at Filoli Charlene and Jerry working on a native oak at Filoli

Harry Hirao Annual Scholarship

The deadline for applying for this $1,500 annual scholarship is July 15.

This scholarship is offered for use toward your education and development in the art of bonsai. As the recipient you would have 12 months in which to spend the scholarship to pay for work you do with a recognized California bonsai artist. Funds cannot be used to purchase bonsai or materials.

For additional info, go to www.gsbf-bonsai.org and click on Education.


Bonsai Pot Collection Donated by Previous Member

The club thanks former Kusamura member David Phillips for his generous donation of bonsai pots. David was active in Kusamura during the 1990s and early 2000 timeframe. Many of you may remember David as our long term Librarian. Thank you also to Stephanie North and everyone who cleaned up pots for sale at our show.

Timely Work Schedule

Each month there are a number of tasks you need to do to your bonsai - from repotting, to fertilizing to spraying for pests. We have put together a checklist, customized for the San Francisco Bay Area to help you. This checklist is adapted from earlier work by Mitsuo Umehara.

This month: June Tasks

Treatment for Accidentally Dried Out Deciduous Trees

Move to a shady area. Mist-spray wilted leaves and water the pot generously. If the tree doesn't recover within 24 hours tilt the pot and drain excess water. Mist-spray the leaves daily. In a week or so all the wilted leaves will fall off and within a couple of weeks the new buds will form.

Once new buds appear return the pot to its normal location and return to your routine maintenance. While in recovery do not fertilize the tree or over water as this will cause root-rot.

May Meeting Recap

Michael Greenstein was our presenter and juggled our trees and questions quite nicely. Michael said “Ask three people about your tree and you'll probably get four answers as to what to do”. Michael discussed how to decide what's the front of a tree and demonstrated how tilting a tree may be what it needs to look more natural. For an informal upright you want to have a number one and a number two branch. Some trees are small and you want to push them to grow bigger. Other trees are small and you want to keep them that way because everything is proportional to what it would look like in nature.

Most trees have latent buds hiding under the bark for emergency. This is why we can air layer trees and create multiple trees out of one.

Michael said that wire in general should be left on the tree for six months but not necessarily a year. If the wire starts digging in it's definitely time for you to remove it.

Remember the apex needs to be over the trunk of the tree. Remove bar branches to prevent knobs along the trunk in that area but with junipers the “almost” golden rule is “never cut a branch off flush but jin it instead”. Cutting leaves off a maple and leaving the stem allows the tree to heal.

On a more humorous note, Michael demonstrated how to win the battle against squirrels by using gutter screen and three or so barbecue skewers to hold the screen in position. Shade cloth placed across the top of the soil can be used to reduce water evaporation during this period of extreme drought.

The club thanks Michael for a very informative demonstration workshop.

During the business portion of our meeting, Jerry Carpenter presented the President’s Annual Report along with handouts of it for those in attendance. The report can be found on the club website under the About Us menu. Our club bylaws were also ratified at this meeting. Copies of the new bylaws will be distributed to all members via email or the Postal Service.