Bonsai stock

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Re: Bonsai stock

Post  GaryWood on Wed Aug 24, 2011 10:04 am

This thread reminds me of the Supply\Demand curves we had to chart in Econ so many years ago No If only supply\demand were replaced with enthusiasm\discernment where a happy equilibrium could be plotted Very Happy
Wood

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Re: Bonsai stock

Post  Tony on Wed Aug 24, 2011 4:10 pm

Sammi Samm Sam. Nicely put Smile

This thread has run its course.


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Re: Bonsai stock

Post  my nellie on Wed Aug 24, 2011 5:47 pm

So, what is the moral of this thread which “has run its course”?
I, the beginner, have made out the following (my highlight for the stand out points) :

fiona wrote: ... ... ... Surely that's what this forum is about: making everyone welcome, and helping them achieve what they want to achieve irrespective of aspiration and working within the confines of what they both want and can practicably achieve… …

I will probably never have a tree that will win major shows but I am content with the improvement I am making and the trees I am turning out. If that improvement continues, so much the better… … …
And I'd hate to think that this forum would discount me because of them.

… … Just as we should not be castigated for wishing to aim high, then neither should we be sneering at those happy to work at their own level of comfort and competence. I firmly believe a forum like this should be actively encouraging people of all levels, even if that is only trying to show someone how their stick in a pot can be a better stick in a pot. Who knows, that might just be the catalyst, the classic lightbulb moment, that then inspires them on to a higher level.

Rob Kempinski wrote:... ... ... Having visited many bonsai gardens I see many experienced bonsai growers growing sticks in a pot thinking about the future.

Sam Ogranaja wrote: ... ... ...Although, I do agree with you Billy on the point that sometimes a "You could use it for firewood" response may be needed. If I ask your opinion then I should be willing to accept whatever you tell me right? If I don't think I'll like the answer, then I personally won't ask the question. … …

jun wrote: ... ... ... Always aim high. That way you will strive more and persevere to learn more. I think any person when given a chance to own a quality tree versus a pencil potted twig will choose the better tree, and it is a form of deception to oneself if you will always say that you are contented with a mediocre tree and never wanted to own a decent bonsai

tony wrote: ... ... ... If my attitude is brusk its because I do not want to be a member of a club that encourages mediocrity... There is enough online bonsai garbage out there.

Am I right or am I not?
The "beginners" do deserve an honest answer from part of the , don't we? Very Happy
Thank you for your patience.




PS: even though I am completely prepared to accept everything you would tell me if I had posted and asked your advice, I am not yet torturing you with photos lol!

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Re: Bonsai stock

Post  GerhardGerber on Wed Aug 24, 2011 7:51 pm

If my attitude is brusk its because I do not want to be a member of a club that encourages mediocrity... There is enough online bonsai garbage out there.

I've been at this 4/5 years, I don't have any great trees, or even anything with great potensial......BUT AT LEAST I KNOW IT.

Couldn't agree more with Tony's statement, and this is the 2nd (but perhaps main) reason why I didn't join the local club.

I think there are wrong and right reasons to have a stick in a pot, the most important thing is knowing where you stand in this regard.

Sorry if this is inappropriate, but few years ago when I was starting out 'bonsaitreeforums' was one of the sites I visited, hungry for knowledge.
You could go there and post a pic of a sad&sorry plant and get praise and go-get-em's heaped on....

It was (is?) pathetic, counter-productive.

I think in a place like this allowances have to be made for people around the globe that maybe do not have access to the best material and all the other components of (creating) a great bonsai, but there's no excuse for not making the most of good advice and information and doing the best you can, learning and improving.

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Re: Bonsai stock

Post  Damienindesert on Thu Aug 25, 2011 1:03 am

tony wrote:
Hi Damien... excellence is often more driven by ego than a deep love of art and horticulture... do you really believe this?

After 30 years you are not happy to put a tree in an exhibition? And how would you know if your trees are world class unless you compare them to those considered so?

Hi again Tony. Sorry for the delay. I was away for work for the night. All this quoting is getting me down, but I need to as it's such an active thread.

Oh and it's closer to 20 years pirat

"Excellence' and percieved excellence can be radically different things. By my own understanding and belief, nothing truly excellent can possibly come to pass as a result of of something as superficial as ego. I falter and allow my ego to get the better of me from time to time, as we all do, but I try to retain conciousness of it and remove it in time. It is an energy-consuming weakness. In further dicussions of the spiritual philosophies I shall digress. cyclops

If someone asked me to put a tree in an exhibition I wouldn't mind. I don't move in 'bonsai circles' though, am not a member of a club, and actually don't have any bonsai friends apart from one or two people I've met on the net. I travel a lot and have given most of my trees away as gifts as a result of my, erm...uprooted No lifestyle. My bonsais are really for me, for my relaxation, meditation, challenge and ultimate enjoyment. To what internationally graded standard they adhere to, I haven't a clue, and don't really care. I know what pleases in my trees and voice what pleases me in the trees of others. If you think this is medeocre, then that is something you will have to deal with. My own hard work and patience results in pure perfection, the type under which no degrees exist, and which requires no reason or conclusion. That's my perfection though, not yours. I'm not implying that my trees are better than anyone else's. Comparison of this nature corrupts and constricts originality.

For what it's worth, I do understand the desire to reach as close to your own percieved perfection as possible, and have great respect for both the hard work and the results.

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Re: Bonsai stock

Post  Rob Kempinski on Thu Aug 25, 2011 2:32 am

The big thing beginners lack in bonsai is time - in that it takes time to make a good tree. Whether one starts with a stick in pot or a piece of collected material, time is needed to make it better. Bonsai is a bit lucky in that it is one area of life where time can be bought - by that I mean one can purchase a better/perhaps finished tree. Time is also needed to learn the skills necessary to keep trees alive and to produce better trees. This might be the message we should tell beginners when they post what seems to be hapless trees.

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Re: Bonsai stock

Post  Jay Gaydosh on Thu Aug 25, 2011 6:07 am

Time...

Can work for you and against you ... I have been involved in bonsai now for over 10 years, in about the same amount of time I have killed as many trees as I have that have thrived! I have no interest in going out and collect some tree that is beautiful right where it is, just to bring it home and kill it ... in time!

I have absolutely ZERO interest in EVER entering a tree in a show. While I work with my trees to try and build a vision for the development of each, constantly trying to improve them as individual trees, I understand that my involvement with bonsai has nothing to do with seeking anyone else's approval, acceptance or any other form of accolades. I have no problem sharing my work with others for the purpose of seeking to improve it, but I reserve the right to accept or reject any suggestions provided.

That is about as blunt as I can put it.

I will forever be a novice, by design, not for any other reason.

Being a large, hard headed individual, I often learn best through the school of hard knocks, but I am sharp enough to realize that if I wasn't so darned stubborn, after reading this thread, I probably would have tucked tail and taken up painting rocks. Some of the "just telling it like it is" crowd will inevitably run off potential bonsai enthusiasts to entertain their own egos rather than advance the art form (JMO)!

To me, bonsai is about taking trees, in whatever form they are obtained in, placing them in a complimentary pot, cultivating it to create a living, continually changing form of living art and STRIVE to make it the best tree the artist can. If I am lucky enough to see it come to pass, outstanding; if not, hopefully someone will pick up where I left off.

What it isn't about is throwing my back out of joint trying to please someone else... other than myself!

For those that chose to develop trees for shows, then their financial and social investment in their bonsai becomes additional concerns that impact their work. That might even cause them to pass on some material that might have become their finest work. But, they will never know.

Me, I just want to keep my trees healthy and continually improving.

Jay

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Re: Bonsai stock

Post  drgonzo on Thu Aug 25, 2011 6:07 am

I love shopping around at landscaping nurseries and such. RARELY do I find that thick trunked beauty we all search for and long for.
So what I have learned to do, and I kinda picked this up from a local Bonsai fella, was take EVERYTHING I purchase as pre-bonsai at any garden center and stick it in this lovely front yard garden bed I Have full of ornamental bushes. I then forget about them until I see a trunk or enough top growth that I think "now I'll dig you up" So I get a nice ornamental garden/grow field and I just approach it with the attitude of"maybe that cotoneaster will come out next year..Maybe not..who knows?" This approach also ensures the vigor of the plant first, before we stress it with Bonsai techniques. Thats how I get past material thats good...but not quite there yet if you get my drift.
-Jay

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Re: Bonsai stock

Post  Jay Gaydosh on Thu Aug 25, 2011 9:39 pm

drgonzo wrote:I love shopping around at landscaping nurseries and such. RARELY do I find that thick trunked beauty we all search for and long for.
So what I have learned to do, and I kinda picked this up from a local Bonsai fella, was take EVERYTHING I purchase as pre-bonsai at any garden center and stick it in this lovely front yard garden bed I Have full of ornamental bushes. I then forget about them until I see a trunk or enough top growth that I think "now I'll dig you up" So I get a nice ornamental garden/grow field and I just approach it with the attitude of"maybe that cotoneaster will come out next year..Maybe not..who knows?" This approach also ensures the vigor of the plant first, before we stress it with Bonsai techniques. Thats how I get past material thats good...but not quite there yet if you get my drift.
-Jay

I do the same thing, Jay, only I have a very small yard, so my new plants go into larger pots and are worked with until I feel they are ready for a bonsai pot. I do have 2 flowering cherry trees planted in my back yard solely for the purpose of developing branches worthy of air-layering and starting as separate trees.

Jay

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Re: Bonsai stock

Post  Jay Gaydosh on Thu Aug 25, 2011 9:56 pm

Rob Kempinski wrote:The big thing beginners lack in bonsai is time - in that it takes time to make a good tree. Whether one starts with a stick in pot or a piece of collected material, time is needed to make it better. Bonsai is a bit lucky in that it is one area of life where time can be bought - by that I mean one can purchase a better/perhaps finished tree. Time is also needed to learn the skills necessary to keep trees alive and to produce better trees. This might be the message we should tell beginners when they post what seems to be hapless trees.

Nicely said, Rob. I believe this is exactly the conundrum we run into. A beginner is frequently told to start with better, more suitable, stock or an established bonsai long before they have built the necessary skills to allow the trees to thrive (or even survive). I learn as much, or more about keeping the trees "happy" from my mistakes than I do from my successes. I would prefer to experience my failures on less expensive material than to go to the annual bonsai auction in our club and learn from my failures on something that costs a bunch. More emphasis needs to be placed on the art form than on the finished product. Especially since the only "finished" bonsai is a dead one!

The bonsai newbie can be as proud or as disappointed in their stick-in-a-pot as the experienced bonsai showman in their "masterpiece", maybe more so. A newbie would never beat himself up because the flowering of his tree peaked the day before, or after being judged at a show. The difference is, the newbie wouldn't dream of crushing the aspirations of the experienced enthusiast, while some experience enthusiasts seem to make belittling the work of the newbie a second hobby!

I believe the crux of this thread is that there are, in fact, different opinions about what bonsai is. The basic "tree in a pot" definition is sufficient for some, but not for others. The fact is, they are all bonsai, what makes up the difference is strictly opinion.

(Seems like we have beaten this dead horse more than once before!)

That... is just my opinion!

Jay

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Re: Bonsai stock

Post  Poink88 on Thu Nov 17, 2011 5:21 am

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Re: Bonsai stock

Post  marcus watts on Thu Nov 17, 2011 6:31 am

the hobby is like all others - to participate and enjoy it is everyones aim and is easily achieved, to raise your standard above the average takes time and patience, but to reach the heady heights of jaw dropping results needs far more.........it takes sacrifice, deeper understanding of the subject and disipline. if a tree collection needs meticulous wiring, pruning or defoliation but you want to go out, or watch a sports game, or need to go to work then something will have to come first....at a recent club meeting i said i cant wait to retire, as time is my luxury in short supply it seems - so basically i need to keep the trees ticking over for 20 years more I guess Very Happy

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Re: Bonsai stock

Post  bumblebee on Thu Nov 17, 2011 11:48 am

drgonzo wrote:I love shopping around at landscaping nurseries and such. RARELY do I find that thick trunked beauty we all search for and long for.
So what I have learned to do, and I kinda picked this up from a local Bonsai fella, was take EVERYTHING I purchase as pre-bonsai at any garden center and stick it in this lovely front yard garden bed I Have full of ornamental bushes. I then forget about them until I see a trunk or enough top growth that I think "now I'll dig you up" So I get a nice ornamental garden/grow field and I just approach it with the attitude of"maybe that cotoneaster will come out next year..Maybe not..who knows?" This approach also ensures the vigor of the plant first, before we stress it with Bonsai techniques. Thats how I get past material thats good...but not quite there yet if you get my drift.
-Jay

That's exactly what I'm doing. My yard is full of plants that may one day be potensai. I enjoy cultivating them in the ground. And I always know I can dig them up any time I think its right. I'm constantly sticking trimmings in pots too, mostly because I can, and think just maybe they'll turn into something worth looking at in time. Or maybe some will be gifts for yard trees. Whatever. I look forward to the best trees I can create over my lifetime. But I also enjoy the processes all along the way. If I had a garden full of 'true' bonsai, I'd still be finding ways to put sticks in pots and seeing what I could do with them.

Libby

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Re: Bonsai stock

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