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Program: Bob Pressler On Ficus Nerifolia

Bob Pressler last visited us in March 2014. This month his topic will be Ficus nerifolia, or Willow Leaf Fig, which has small narrow leaves which resemble those of willow trees. It is a robust and fast-growing tropical tree which is ideal for bonsai in Southern California. Come see what clever things he has to show and tell about the species.

Bob is the owner of Kimura Nursery, 17230 Roscoe Blvd Northridge, 818-343-4090, Nursery hours are Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday 9AM -5PM. He is a member of the California Bonsai Society and John Naka’s club Nampu Kai. He has studied with a variety of teachers, starting informally with Frank Okamura at the Brooklyn Botanical gardens in the early ‘70’s when he was a boy.

Bob created the 110 tree forest in the photograph in 2001 as a memorial to the events of 9-11. The number one tree stands roughly where the Empire State Building would be, the 110 trees stand for the 110 stories of the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center, and there are two burned, hollowed out trunks where the towers would be.

President’s Message:

I would like to say Welcome to all of our new members. We are so excited to have you join us on this great adventure.

Our second half of the year workshops are upon us. If you haven’t signed up yet, do contact Wally for adding your name to either, or both, the 2nd Saturday session with Ann Erb, or the 3rd Saturday session with our varied instructors. Wally has said that several of our NEW members have already signed up.

Thanks to Ann Erb and John Kopp for volunteering to host our August potluck. For those of you who not been to their “Bonsai Emporium”, it is a real treat. We will have a map for you to find their house. It is a true potluck, so bring your favorite “whatever”. We also have a raffle of bonsai related items, and I know it’s hard to relinquish any of your treasures, but do try to bring something. It does make for a fun day.

~ Tom

Last Month: Cheryl Manning

Cheryl Manning with a hut stone
Harry Hirao, “Mr. California Juniper”
Harry Hirao, “Mr. California Juniper”

Cheryl’s presentation had three parts. She started off with a pictorial tribute to her friend Harry Hirao, “Mr. California Juniper”, who died about a year ago. His collected California junipers, as well as the trips to collect them on Mojave Desert hillsides, have been bonsai legends for many years. The picture at right shows Harry with one of his trees. The picture at far right shows Cheryl with a hut stone collected by Harry from the Eel River which she donated to our club and which will be included in the raffle at our August potluck.

Next, Cheryl showed slides of a number of trees from several venues, including some very, very nice trees at prestigious shows in Japan. Most of us would have said that the trees already bordered on perfection, but Cheryl’s discriminating eye saw that they all had the potential to be even better.

Juniper - Before
Juniper – Before
Juniper - After
Juniper – After
For example, she Photoshopped the tree at left to emphasize the shari on the trunk and thinned out the foliage to add to the feeling of age and strength of the tree, as seen at right.
Pine - Before
Pine – Before
Pine - After
Pine – After
The pine at left had a large white pot which detracted from the aged character of the tree. With a little manipulating, again with Photoshop, she shows how it might look in a more suitable smaller subdued pot, at right.

Finally, Cheryl critiqued trees brought in by club members.

Cheryl with an oak and a juniper.
Cheryl with an oak and a juniper.

Create Your Own Bonsai Workshop (beginner’s class)

The club’s annual beginner’s class, led by Ann Erb, was held at the Santa Barbara Botanic Garden on June 11. The weather was unexpectedly cool and drizzly so the event was moved inside to the Arroyo Room. It was a bit too cozy in the room but the 15 very enthusiastic participants seemed to cope with the crowded conditions very well and all went home with nice little trees. Welcome to you all, and we hope you continue to participate in our club!

Coming Events:

July 9: Bonsai Club Of Santa Barbara: 2rd Saturday Workshop With Ann Erb

9:30 AM until 12:30 PM, Room 8, Goleta Valley Community Center. New Semester, fees are due: $108 for four workshops. Subsequent dates for 2nd semester classes are September 10, October 8, and November 12. Questions? Contact Ann Erb.

July 16: Bonsai Club Of Santa Barbara: 3rd Saturday Workshop With Guest Instructor

9 AM until noon or 1 to 4 PM., Room 7, Goleta Valley Community Center. Ted Matson, guest instructor. New Semester, fees are due: $108 for four workshops. Questions? Contact Wally Kunimoto.

July 16: Obon Festival, Buddhist Church Of Santa Barbara

1015 East Montecito Street, Santa Barbara, 12:30 – 5:00 PM. The club will have a small bonsai display. Everyone is welcome to attend the festival If you’d like to display a tree, contact Tom Post. For more information about the festival visit .

August 27: Bonsai Club Of Santa Barbara: Summer Potluck

As Tom mentioned in his President’s Message, Ann Erb and John Kopp have volunteered to host the potluck in their very interesting garden (there’s more than bonsai) at their Nipomo home. A map and more information will be included with the August newsletter. No Tuesday evening meeting or Saturday workshops in August.

October 27-30, 2016: Golden State Bonsai Federation Convention 39

“A Bonsai Convergence: Gather At The Rivers”. Headliners: Ryan Neil and Bjorn Bjornholm. More Workshops and Seminars from: Kathy Shaner, David Nguy, Peter Tea, and others. Where: The Double Tree By Hilton 2001 Point West Way, Sacramento, CA 95815. Hotel phone: 916-924-4900 (ask for the “GSBF Group Rate”) For more information, contact: Scott Chadd, GSBF President at: 530-622-9681 or On-line registration opens on July 1, 2016