RBS March 2017 Newsletter


March 2017 Newsletter

Richmond Bonsai Society 2016 – 2018 Officers
President: Ron Edwards  Vice President: Jon Warkentin Treasurer: Jack Frye  Secretary: Thomas Sones
Board Members At Large: Betty Lou Lagis

Regular Meetings, unless otherwise noted, are held the 4th Monday of every month at 7 pm in the Community Room at St. Mary’s Woods, 1257 Marywood Ln., Richmond VA, 23229.

Contact us at info@richmondbonsaisociety.org  or visit us at www.richmondbonsaisociety.org or on Facebook.

Bonsai information, common questions and answers, monthly growing advice, and bonsai links can be found here.

RBS 2017 dues are $25 per person or $30 per family, which includes PBA membership. Checks should be made out to RBS and can be paid at a meeting or mailed to our treasurer (email us for address).

In this issue…

RBS Officers

Richmond Bonsai Society 2016-2018 Officers and Board of Directors:

President Ron Edwards
Vice-President John Warkenton
Treasurer Jack Frye
Secretary Thomas Sones
Past-President Randi Heise
Board Member at Large Betty Lou Lages

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Secretary’s Message by Thomas Sones

Well, Randi was right. Old man winter was not finished with us and really came back with a vengeance. Well, maybe not quite that bad, but let’s hope it’s over now. Like some of you, I had already done some re-potting and had to move plants inside due the freezing temperatures. I don’t enjoy the temperature tango, which is one reason I don’t have many tropical trees. On a positive note, I hadn’t had a chance to go collecting yet, so i didn’t have to worry about that.  If you have had any adventures in collecting lately, please feel free to share them on our Face Book page for that. I am going to try to get out and do some soon.

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Calendar of Bonsai Events:

Richmond Bonsai Society Events
March 21      RBS Board of Directors Meeting
March 26     RBS at VCY Cherry Blossom Festival, 1-5 pm
March 26     BYOT Workshop with Frank Mihalic, 3-6 pm
March 27     Regular Meeting Selecting Nursery Materials with Frank Mihalic, 7-9 pm
April 24       Regular Meeting Slab Plantings, 7-9 pm
May 21       Annual Picnic and Auction

Other Organizations:
Now – Oct. 1    Exhibit: The Bonsai Saga: How 53 Japanese Bonsai Came to America, National Arboretum, D.C.
Now -May 7    Viewing Stones Exhibit: Legacy of Japanese Suiseki in North America, National Arboretum, D.C.
March 25         Baltimore Bonsai Auction, Behnke Nurseries in Beltsville, MD.
April 2              PVSG Regular Meeting
April 7-9          Mid-Atlantic Bonsai Festival
April 8- 9         NVBS Spring Show
April 11             Peninsula Bonsai  Regular meeting (repotting conifers)
April 14-15       Peninsula Bonsai Exhibition at Anderson’s
April 15-16       NVBS Workshops with Roy Nagatoshi
May     9            Peninsula Bonsai Regular meeting (Trees from dig should be budding out)
May 12-14         Potomac Bonsai Spring Bonsai Festival and World Bonsai Day Celebration, National Arboretum, D.C.
May 25-28        Brussel’s Rendezvous
May 27– June 4      Exhibit:  Satsuki Azalea Bonsai, National Arboretum, D.C.
June 23-25       National Shohin Exhibition, Kannapolis, North Carolina


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Recent Activity Reports

RBS Beginner Workshop 

Thanks so much to everyone who participated in and helped with our beginner workshop this past Saturday. Special shout out to Jack for teaching the workshop. It went very well. Hopefully, we will see all of the participants at our regular activities.

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Upcoming Event Details

RBS Board of Director’s Meeting- Monday, 6:00pm March 20th, at Jason’s Deli at Willow Lawn in Richmond. All members are invited to attend and offer input.  However, as a reminder, please remember that if the board needs to vote on something, only board members vote. (This is rare since the board usually works on consensus.)

RBS at VCU Cherry Blossom Festival, Sunday March 26, 1-5 pm.  The VCU Japanese Student Association has asked us to have an information and demonstration table at their Cherry Blossom Festival which is in the Student Commons Courtyard. If you would like to help out, please contact Thomas. We will set up about noon.

Bring Your Own Tree Workshop with Frank Mihalic. Sunday, March 26, 3-6 pm. Great Big Green House We have secured Frank Mihalic  of Wildwood Gardens for a “bring your own tree” workshop on Sunday, March 26th, from 3-6 pm at the Great Big Green House. The cost is $20 and members who register should bring their own trees to work on and their own tools, wire, etc.

As we have a number of new members, let me explain how this will work. Sometimes we refer to these as “intermediate skill” workshops. Frank will rotate among the participants offering suggestions and advice. Each participant is expected to complete the suggested work before Frank returns to discuss next steps. There will be experienced bonsai hobbyists at the workshop to assist as needed. Do not hesitate to ask one of our members for assistance. Often, members choose not to participate, but come to watch others work, listen to the advice of a pro, and learn. Observing is highly recommended.

Participation in the workshop is limited to 10 people and costs $20. Members who sign up as a participant are expected to have the $20 payment at the workshop. If you are not able to commit, please sign up as an observer, which is free. If you want to be a participant, but the slots are full, sign up as an  alternate, come and observe, and we will put you in if someone backs out. Sing-ups are here, first come, first served here.

Regular March Meeting: Selecting Material from Nursery Stock with Frank Mihalic, Monday, March 27, 7 pm.   Frank will also be the guest speaker and talk about choosing nursery stock for bonsai. In addition, members are invited to bring plants that they want advice on ( but this is not a workshop). We will try to get everyone a chance to have one tree critiqued, but feel free to bring more than one and we will do as many as we have time for. This meeting will be held in the Community Room at St. Mary’s Woods, 1257 Marywood Ln., Richmond VA, 23229. As always, members are invited to come early if they has questions or need advice on their trees.

World Bonsai Day Festival, May 12, 13 & 14, 10:00 am – 5:00 pm, National Bonsai & Penjing Museum, Washington, D.C.   Join us for our annual bonsai festival which features something for everyone.  Activities include workshops, demonstrations, special exhibits, and vendors. The festival celebrates World Bonsai Day, an annual event founded on Saburo Kato’s belief that bonsai has the power to unite people by acting as a bridge to international friendship and peace.  This event features a curator-led museum tours, demonstrations, workshops, vendors, and an exhibit about Mr. Kato, founder of the World Bonsai Friendship Federation. World Bonsai Day Festival is co-sponsored by the National Arboretum, the National Bonsai Foundation, and the Potomac bonsai Association.  For a complete schedule of activities, see the Bonsai Festival Schedule. Free, except for workshops, which are $55. Registration required for workshops.

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Article: Bonsai Road Trip, Part 3    Thomas Sones

Last month, I wrote about my visit to the Monastery and Full Moon Bonsai around Atlanta. Not too far from Full Moon Bonsai is the bonsai collection at Smith Gilbert Gardens in Kennesaw, GA. About 40 minutes northwest of Atlanta, this collection houses about 75 beautiful specimen trees, similar to what you might see at the National Arboretum. Admission to the garden is just $7.00, and it was well worth it.  The collection, much larger and with more variety than that at the Monastery, is also curated by Rodney Clemmons and I am told also includes some of his work.

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The morning that I was there, it was a bit overcast, and there was something about the morning light that made the trees especially mesmerizing, especially the bark. I took hundreds of pictures of bark and moss. I enjoyed the trees at Smith Gilbert Gardens more than the ones at the Monastery. Some of the trees were not masterpieces, but I spent a lot of time studying them, root and limb development, hiding chops and flaws, group planting design, and many other things.

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While in Atlanta, I also tried to arrange a visit to Clemmons’ nursery, which, I am told has some of the most amazing Kingsville boxwood available. While he was quite easy to communicate with, he was not available during my visit to the area. Something to keep for next time.

Next month, I will share about my final visit, the Bonsai Learning Center near Charlotte, North Carolina.

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Other Announcements and information

Donate a Book or Magazine: RBS maintains a lending library available to members. The lending selection includes many magazines, books, and some videos. If you have books or magazines that you no longer enjoy, please donate them to the club.

PBA mailing list – PBA is compiling an email list to make communications more streamlined. Sign up here.

For sale:

Mixed Bonsai Soil -regular and shohin soil (fine) 5 gal bags. Call Lee (804-869-1257) to place a special order.

Pumice (as a planting medium). Randi has pumice in two sizes, 3/8 and 5/16. Both sizes are priced the same, a 79 pound bag is $93 otherwise the pumice is sold at $1.25 per pound. Contact her for orders. randiheise@yahoo.com

Notice: RBS mails printed newsletters upon request. We encourage members to update their member records and switch to electronic versions of the newsletter when possible. If you receive a printed version, but would prefer electronic, please inform the club secretary or reply to this mailing.

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