Which books

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Which books

Post  kellyronald6 on Fri Jan 20, 2012 2:39 pm

I am new to this very interesting hobby. I live in Texas zone 8. I want to read and learn as much as I can, so I am wondering what are the best books to own? Which have the best information on Growing, Pruning, Fertilizing, Watering and so forth? Where is the best place to aguire them? What is the best trees to learn with? Can I Buy said Trees, Soil, Pots, Tools online?

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Re: Which books

Post  Robert Steven on Fri Jan 20, 2012 2:47 pm

Hi Kelly,

Go to visit www.stonelantern.com and you will find almost everything...
Good luck !

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Re: Which books

Post  JimLewis on Fri Jan 20, 2012 3:51 pm

Stone Lantern is fine. Amazon is fine for books.

Plants are almost always better coming from somewhere near you, so you know they'll do well in your climate. San Antonio should have some nice nurseries from which you can select plants for a do-it-yourself bonsai. If you are looking to buy a "finished" bonsai, a good one will cost you a few hundred dollars, though you can buy S-curve imported Chinese junk for $25-$40.

As for books . . . Beginners will do well with one of Herb Gustafson's books -- probably "Bonsai Workshop."

If you can find the 1994 or 2003 editions of Sunset Magazine's "Bonsai" they are excellent. www.abebooks.com has them. Other editions aren't as good.

Probably the most comprehensive treatment is Deborah Koreshoff's "Bonsai its Art, Philosophy, History and Science." it too is out of print, I think, and is the most expensive of all that I've noted here.

I'd recommend that you join a bonsai club. There is one in San Antonio:

San Antonio Bonsai Society, Inc. Meets at 7:00 pm on the second Thursday of each month, at the Lion's Field Adult & Senior Citizens Center located at 2809 Broadway (corner of Broadway and Mulberry). Contact: Donna Dobberfuhl, 2009 SABS President at two2views@yahoo.com. Postal Mailings: P. O. Box 39161, San Antonio, TX 78216.

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Re: Which books

Post  Poink88 on Fri Jan 20, 2012 4:34 pm

WELCOME!!!

I am in Austin now but used to live in San Antonio. You have much better nurseries there and I envy you. Check if the Maldonado landscaping nursery at North-West 1604 is still there. They have a lot of premium pre-bonsai stock there (but not being sold as such) last I visited (around 1999 Embarassed )

For practice plant...consider ficus (willow leaf if you can find it). They are just very tough and can tolerate abuse better than most.

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Re: Which books

Post  RKatzin on Fri Jan 20, 2012 5:39 pm

Hi Kelly, as long as you're in Texas check out Dallas Bonsai Gardens. A great source for books, tools, plants, everything bonsai! Shop online at dallasbonsaigardens.com.

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Re: Which books

Post  Poink88 on Fri Jan 20, 2012 5:59 pm

RKatzin wrote:Hi Kelly, as long as you're in Texas check out Dallas Bonsai Gardens. A great source for books, tools, plants, everything bonsai! Shop online at dallasbonsaigardens.com.

DBG is a great source. That said, buying online is sometimes counter intuitive because of tax. Just one more thing to factor when making your decision.

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Re: Which books

Post  fiona on Fri Jan 20, 2012 7:13 pm

Hi Kelly, and welcome to the hobby. You can find what we've recommended previously by clicking HERE Happy researching.

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Re: Which books

Post  Sam Ogranaja on Fri Jan 20, 2012 7:14 pm

I personally think that you can learn a lot about which plants to grow and how to fertilize them by reading posts right here on this forum. You can also find a lot on soil as well. This forum is pretty incredible when it comes to the information in here and the talent that posts here. Walter Pall's blog is also excellent in learning about soil and fertilizer but you'll have to search for it.

It's my personal opinion that the best books and the only ones worth keeping around are ones that teach you how and why to style trees a certain way. I have yet to come across a book that does this better than "Mission of Transformation" by Robert Steven. You can pick it up at Stone Lantern. I haven't read "Vision of my Soul" yet but it's on my list of books to get. Maybe my wife will get it for my birthday next month? Robert did not ask me to endorse his books, I just believe that strongly in the book I do have. I've pretty much destroyed it I've gone back to it so many times.

I bought some beginner books including "Bonsai workshop" by Herb Gustaffson and gave them all away. I must say the Herb's book is very beginner friendly but in the end, once you know what you need to know, you'll always know, you know? Smile

I can't say enough positive things about joining a club. Jim's advice is spot on. If it wasn't for the club I would have never had exposure to Suthin Sukosolvisit, David Easterbrook, Ted Matson, Arthur Joura and they're also bringing Bjorn Bjornholm this year. Never mind the fact that we have some very talented people in our club as well.

Good luck in your bonsai adventure. It's a wonderful art, hobby, gardening, whatever you want to call it.
Have a great weekend everyone!!!
Sam

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Re: Which books

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