Fall Bonsai Collection @ Chicago Botanical Garden

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Fall Bonsai Collection @ Chicago Botanical Garden

Post  mmehrmann on Wed Nov 09, 2011 11:55 pm

We visited last weekend the Botanical Garden in Chicago. You might enjoy the pictures I took from the trees currently on display in the East and West Courtyards of the Regenstein Center.

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Re: Fall Bonsai Collection @ Chicago Botanical Garden

Post  Todd Ellis on Thu Nov 10, 2011 12:42 am

I really enjoyed the tour! Thanks for posting these!
Best,
Todd

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Re: Fall Bonsai Collection @ Chicago Botanical Garden

Post  Guest on Thu Nov 10, 2011 1:01 am

Thanks for sharing.

comment though, It appears in the pictures that some of the trees displayed seems to be neglected for quite sometime. Yes, they are healthy but some branches are becoming too long and leggy. And the conifers are becoming unrefined. Sorry, if it just me and my observation.

regards,
jun Smile



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Re: Fall Bonsai Collection @ Chicago Botanical Garden

Post  bonsaisr on Thu Nov 10, 2011 3:01 am

Very enjoyable, but pictures from an exhibit are always more helpful if you include the names.
Iris

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Re: Fall Bonsai Collection @ Chicago Botanical Garden

Post  bucknbonsai on Thu Nov 10, 2011 3:06 am

I agree Jun, some of those conifers are close to going to waste (unless some grafting is used) if someone does not do a lot of work on them soon. I would think there would be a local bonsai club that would pitch in to help, The several public collections I know of are usually donated by local bonsai artist who have passed away, so I would think the local clubs would be upset about the refinement of the trees that have been donated, if that is how the botanic gardens here ended up with them.

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Re: Fall Bonsai Collection @ Chicago Botanical Garden

Post  mmehrmann on Thu Nov 10, 2011 3:45 am

Thank you for your feedback. Here is the link to the Botanical Garden website with information about the trees and the collections history. Chicago Botanical Garden - A Walk through the Bonsai Courtyards

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Re: Fall Bonsai Collection @ Chicago Botanical Garden

Post  Guest on Thu Nov 10, 2011 6:21 am

bucknbonsai wrote:I agree Jun, some of those conifers are close to going to waste (unless some grafting is used) if someone does not do a lot of work on them soon. I would think there would be a local bonsai club that would pitch in to help, The several public collections I know of are usually donated by local bonsai artist who have passed away, so I would think the local clubs would be upset about the refinement of the trees that have been donated, if that is how the botanic gardens here ended up with them.

In our country, where government funds are always short. animals in public zoos were adopted by private corporations, individuals, or clubs. The animals adopted stays and cared by the zoo, but the funding is shared by adopter.
I think some local clubs would be more than willing to provide proper care for public owned trees like these. and even private individual can adopt the tree/trees and be responsible in its care...and if needed be, the name of the person or club can be placed side by side with the trees info. Its better than losing precious public owned trees.

Just wondering what happened, I have seen these trees before and they are very nice and so taken cared of, and the facilities and display areas looks so neat.

regards,
jun Smile



Last edited by jun on Thu Nov 10, 2011 2:05 pm; edited 1 time in total

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Re: Fall Bonsai Collection @ Chicago Botanical Garden

Post  marcus watts on Thu Nov 10, 2011 7:47 am

i thought exactly the same thing, regarding the bulk of the ever-greens they are a lovely collection of semi raw material that needs lots of work and refining to regain themselves as bonsai again. - the tall literati has 5 years of correct pinching and plucking ahead and collectively they would love about 20 kilos of copper wire applied to show the trees as they have the potential to be.

i think it is national collection trees (that i feel are not kept well refined in more places than just here) that should be used for demonstration purposes when GOOD bonsai artists are the guests at large national shows. this is a win win situation as the artist understands the importance of the tree they are working on so they do the best job they can, the tree itself benefits from skilled attention, and there is not the problem for show organisers to source and then decide who keeps ! the demo trees.

there have been some very skilled artists in the US this year, plus the home grown talent coming through from japanese apprenticeships -Walter pall's visit was posted here recently to name just one - so why give these artists a fairly normal field or pot grown pine when they could have worked on one of these lovely old trees ?

i believe the uk collections are exactly the same - trees kept alive and healthy but not as well refined as trees belonging to any hobbyist who shows their trees. Often the deciduous look fine as a quick scissor prune keeps the summer image, but the pines and junipers need time and technique, and it is easy to see this is lacking.

marcus

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Re: Fall Bonsai Collection @ Chicago Botanical Garden

Post  NeilDellinger on Fri Nov 11, 2011 2:44 am

Jun & Marcus,
I couldn't agree more. The trees in this collection have great character and age. Last year we had Michael Hagerdorn, this year Ryan Neil, next year Peter Warren. They could easily have taken 3-4 of the better trees and set them back onto the "path".

Neil

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Re: Fall Bonsai Collection @ Chicago Botanical Garden

Post  cbobgo on Fri Nov 11, 2011 5:04 am

I used to live in Chicago, and was a member of the local club. These trees had been mostly neglected for many years - just a few retirees who tried to take care of them but had no real training. A few years ago the Garden finally hired a curator for the bonsai collection - someone who has actually studied with a Master from Japan, coincidently the same master who donated 12 of the best trees in the collection.

So the curator has been trying to get the collection back into shape. But I agree, the vast majority of these trees look more like rough stock than finished trees. It's pretty sad, as they have the potential to have a really great collection there.

- bob

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Re: Fall Bonsai Collection @ Chicago Botanical Garden

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