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when I can't be with koi

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  • when I can't be with koi

    I'm usually working with my bonsai. Yesterday I put together this japanese larch grouping. I had been hunting the right trees to put together along with the right pot and soil. All came from different places. It took about two hrs to put together. It is heavier than I can lift. the pot length and tallest tree is about 30 inches. If you ever look thru classic bonsais pictures from the masters in japan you will not find larches. they're kinda like the Asagi/Shusui's I love in the koi world. I love them because now thery look like any other deciduous tree that has dropped all it's leaves. In the spring ( about one month) The brightest green needles will appear. Then in the fall it looks lik it's dying because all the needles turn yellow before they drop. I planted the group in a yellow pot because I wanted the fall time to be in harmony with the pot. Like koi ,this project will have to develop over the years to where the growth of the trees relates to available space according to what their neighbor does, making them look like they've been there awhile. The lead tree in front is about 2 inches in diameter, while the one on the right is an inch and a quarter. The one that shows least clearly in the picture on the left is 3/4 of an inch in diameter. This technique of diminishing size gives the feeling of perspective. I also enjoy Ikebana and Suiseki. My koi pond and bonsai garden sit in my japanese garden that I designed and built and maintain since back in the mid 70's. Dan Blatt has volunteered to get the picture posted. Thanks Dan ( the showa man )
    Dick Benbow
  • #2

    Here it is Dick...
    Attached Files


    • #3

      Hi Dick,

      Nice looking trees, had you grown them to this size deliberatly for this use, or just found 3 you liked and grouped them? Were they wild trees, grown from seed, or purchased from a garden centre/nursery?

      I've never quite had the patience for Bonsai, but a big tree(s) might sway me. Presume they need watering every day etc?
      Regards, Bob
      ><{{{{º> ><{{{{º> ><{{{{º>
      <º}}}}>< <º}}}}><


      • #4

        Very nice

        Excellent job Dick!

        I also love the larch group for bonsai.
        I do want to come over and trim that annoying second branch up from the bottom on the left of the main tree 8)! Time to get out the wire and start working on the leaf pads for the up coming growth season. Remember Larch are very sensitive to the wire with their soft bark then other varieties, so keep the loops loose. Also remember when the candles emerge enough to pinch NOT cut about 1/3 to 1/2 of their length. Let me know if you need any help, I will come pay you a visit bringing a larch of mine and my tools.



        • #5

          When I can't be with koi, I am usually tending to my Rottweilers...or working...or sleeping...
          The world sleeps as the chance to learn something new passes.


          • #6

            Lester: thank-you for your offer. Will take you up on it this spring!

            everything you see there came from a different place. 3 trees, 3 different nurseries, different place for the soil and the pot. Digging wild trees or yamadori as the japanese call them is using a diminishing resourse and I'm not comfortable with it. No problem with others who dig on private lands or get permits for public. But a true artist with time and patience can make a nursery stock look like it was dug from the wild and that's a gift too! There are those koi nuts who pick out tosai and stay with them. there are those who buy finished koi and work hard to be competitive, keeping them at their best for as long as they can. I quess I'm learning that I want to give to my charges something of myself. Amazing thing tho with japanese gardens or bonsai or koi, the harder you work at something the better you get at it and then the less you have to work on them. Interesting circle,no?

            I do like studing many of the japanese arts because it helps me to understand
            the culture. our lanquages are so different that many subtelties that go untranslated can be understood if you understand the reasoning behind it.

            I think the reason I do so well with my koi is I'm with them everyday. I clean their filters every day. Same with bonsai. I check them every day. During the summer they need watering up to 3x a day. It just fits into my lifestyle and personality. It ain't for everybody.

            I don't seek the gift but the giver. to appreciate what a bonsai artists sees
            in his work and is attempting to do is the key, not the bonsai itself! A bonsai will tell you what it likes and doesn't like by how it reacts to your care. once you learn the language, you communicate. Like with my favorite asagi. She wouldn't come up and fight with the pigs for floating wheatgerm. She's a lady. She hugged the bottom. I got some sinking food. She now comes up to greet me when I approach her pond! I speak asagi. I'm looking forward to learning
            shusui or kosui with Arthur's help. you know kosui (ain't got no bluee! )
            Dick Benbow


            • #7

              Nice larch group, Dick.
              Though not related to Koi, I enjoyed reading your posts talking about your bonsai. It is interesting how you see and live this bonsai hobby, and the comparison you made between ways of understand the bonsai and the Koi hobbies.
              Seems that there is much more in your post to think about than it might seems to someone casting a glance over it.

              Diego Jordano
              Cordoba, Spain
              A.E.K. web site
              pers. web site


              • #8

                thank-you for your comments Diego. Appreciated. there are so many similarities between koi and bonsai it's amazing. patience and a sense of timing play a big part in achievement for both hobbies.
                Dick Benbow


                • #9

                  Here you go dick, I was digging through some old pics from my past trip to Momotaro, and here's a bonsai I took a pic of when we were at the airport.
                  Attached Files
                  The world sleeps as the chance to learn something new passes.


                  • #10

                    Thanks for the Pine pic. Since pine don't like "wet feet" I'm wondering how they got that pot to float in the water without absorbing anything!
                    Dick Benbow


                    • #11

                      Actually that pine was in the middle of the pond on an island. Hella funny was looking for the first pond in Japan, and pow there was a pond in front of the airport.
                      The world sleeps as the chance to learn something new passes.


                      • #12

                        lots of neat symbolism there. I love a good black pine with knarley bark. they are alot of work! Wonder if they have to get a boat in the pond to prune that baby?

                        many times when a bonsai is in trouble, you can fill a container with water and set it on a brick high and dry yet surrounded by evaporating moisture which helps.
                        Dick Benbow


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