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Saturday January 18 Workshops: Roy Nagatoshi

Our first workshop of the new year features Master Bonsaist Roy Nagatoshi, the owner of Fuji Bonsai Nursery in Sylmar. Roy was born in the U.S. and raised in Japan where he learned bonsai from his father, ​Shigeru, who started Fuji Bonsai in 1965. Roy went on to receive a B.S. in Ornamental Horticulture and provided bonsai training until he took over Fuji Bonsai for his father. He is the Past President of the California Bonsai Society, and has traveled to many countries including South Africa, Brazil, Australia, Mexico, Canada and Japan to further the art of bonsai. Roy provided the bonsai trees displayed in the popular “Karate Kid” movie series. Fuji Bonsai grows pre bonsai trees from seeds and cuttings, then using bonsai traditions, develops the trees specifically as bonsai stock. He has many great trees at quite reasonable prices. Visit for more info. Don’t miss these great workshops (9 am to noon and 1 pm to 4 pm. Sign up now (have I mentioned that yet?)

President’s Message: A 2020 Vision

Happy New Year! I hope you all have the opportunity and desire this year to attend our Tuesday evening presentations, our third Saturday workshops, our potlucks, and to exhibit a tree or two in our annual show in May. If there is anything the club can or should do to improve, please let me know any time during the year when you have an idea or suggestion. The club has money, quite a lot of it in fact, that has generously been donated to spend on things not related to our basic day-to-day expenses. We have a substantial endowment that was donated anonymously several years ago, and we still have most of the money donated by the family of our late faithful member Sally Gilmore. We really should be coming up with clever ideas to use it in one or more meaningful ways to benefit the club. Please think about it!
I’d like to welcome Anna Baker as our new webmaster, and to thank Daniel Martinez for his years of service in developing and maintaining our very professional and user-friendly website. Anna wants to get real world web design experience and so she volunteered, with Daniel’s helpful mentoring, to take over ours. Thank you Anna.  If it’s been a while since you visited it, check it out at

New Year’s Resolution Number 481…

This year, I will sign up EARLY for the FOUR SPRING WORKSHOPS before they fill up. I will also stop eating ice cream right out of the container and go to the gym more than once a month… Okay, well, at least I’ll do that first one. We have an excellent line-up of workshop leaders this January, February, March and April. We only have space for 8 participants in the Morning session (9 am – noon) and 8 in the Afternoon session (1 pm to 4 pm). Sign up now and support the Club!
Also, our annual CLUB MEMBERSHIP dues are due in January: $35 ($45 for families). Send your payments to our PO Box or bring to the first Club meeting of the year.

Tuesday January 14, 7:30 Pm – Wally Kunimoto – Grafting

If members want to know how I was able to get the beautiful fall colors on my Trident maple bonsai (below), I will provide the information at the meeting. I am sure that the simple method will also bring our beautiful fall colors to Japanese Mountain Maple bonsai.
My primary goal for the grafting program is to succeed in convincing younger and older members to try bonsai grafting. Not by a demo but with good illustrations based on my successes and my many, many failures..
I will point out how to succeed by circumventing the marginal techniques I had used in grafting over the years. I will identify the one item via illustration that you will need to assure you will succeed in grafting. Attend the program if you want to know what it is!! I will discuss my failures/success in grafting Japanese white pine to Japanese black pine, shimpaku to junipers, Japanese black pine to Japanese black pine and thread grafting trident maples.
The aluminum foil covered San Jose juniper is what it looked like after grafting about 10 shimpaku scions. I will bring the tree with the foils removed, so you can see the result after one year of grafting.

Last Month: Winter Potluck

Special thanks to Joe Olson and his wife Mirella for hosting our winter potluck. A big part of the fun at these events is getting to look at other people’s trees. And Joe has an amazing collection, including some spectacular cork oaks. Mirella is also an artist and has a house full (and I mean full) of incredible paintings. She shows her work at a gallery in Los Olivos. There was a lot of great food and a fun raffle. Here are a few photos from the event.

Upcoming Bonsai Events Near You

January 18 – 19, 2020 Arcadia, California

Baikoen Bonsai Kenkyukai, “Winter Silhouettes”, 56th Annual Exhibition, at the Los Angeles Arboretum, Ayres Hall of Environmental Education, located at 301 North Baldwin Ave., Arcadia, CA 91007. Show hours on both days are 10am to 4:30pm. Deciduous bonsai in all their leafless glory are featured from club members and invited guests. The Nagata-Komai award winner will be announced, and there will be a demonstrator at 1pm on both days. There will be a sales area with club and vendor plants, pots, tools and more.
For more information, please visit or email Ken Teh at

January 31 – February 2, 2020 Santa Nella, California

California Shohin Society Seminar 2020: held at the Hotel de Oro Conference Center, Santa Nella, California. Benefit from the knowledge of several illuminati of the America Bonsai world. There will be multiple demonstrations over the three days of the seminar. This is the best gathering of America Bonsai experts and please remember they are donating their time to keep your costs down.

For questions, concerns, or to obtain more registration forms, email Randi at

February 22 And 23 – San Marino, California

Golden State Bonsai Federation Collection at the Huntington: Bonsai-A-Thon XXIV will be held at Botanical Center Building The Huntington Library, Art Museum and Botanical Gardens 1151 Oxford Road. GSBF Early Bird Passes – Bonsai Club Members 7:30 AM – 5:00 PM General Public 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM. Event includes extensive bazaar area, bonsai exhibit, bonsai workshops for children and adults (pre-registration required), demonstrations, daily raffle and auction, guided tours, and pancake breakfast for BAT participants at 7:30 AM daily.