Looking back, a career in bonsai is a logical place for me to end up. Having been interested in nature from an early age, I pursued a formal education in ornamental horticulture. My tastes evolved from collecting and growing orchids to rare cacti and succulents; both extremely addictive but had a tinge of artificiality with all the “zonal denial” as we plant nerds call it. From my college days until about 5 years ago, I was most interested in rare and unusual cultivated varieties of plants. This interest has been tempered by my love for nature and a realization with a few exceptions, truly good bonsai should resemble the colors, textures, lines, and shapes commonly observed in nature. Kusamono on the other hand allows me to grow the weirdest most obscenely vairegated plant with extra large flowers : ). Bonsai is the only thing I’ve found that you cannot fully master every aspect of in one, let alone many lifetimes. This art-form is a passion worth pursuing.
While I do not work for free in person, information on the proper styling and after-care of plants is necessary to keep your trees alive. Background on why we do certain things when training bonsai can also shed a great deal of light on this art form. My goal with the blog is to meet others interested or heavily addicted to bonsai and share some of my experiences while I travel across America and abroad. If you search hard enough on the internet, you can find out pretty much anything. However, who do you listen to? My feeling is, photos validate claims. Do you trust the guy who heard about it, or the one documenting the process and the aftermath? The proof is in the pudding. Face to face instruction should never be discounted. A great deal of bonsai work is not only visual, but tactile. The feel for proper technique must be gained over time with qualified teachers. I strongly support the concept of study groups that meet regularly. The best bonsai in the world are worked on a little at a time over the course of the year. With so many bonsai professionals currently teaching and many more in training now, it can be a challenge to choose who to book for upcoming events. The background and pertinent experiences of any given professional are very important. Do they work regularly with the species you like? Are they knowledgeable? What of communication skills?
Interests and certifications that I feel will benefit students I teach: