Newsletter – October 2019

Bonsai Notebook

The October 12 meeting will be held at the Arboretum at 7:00pm, our usual place and time. Our guest demonstrator will be Mel Ikeda. What a pleasure to have him back to share his extensive expertise in bonsai styling.

Mel grew up in bonsai, learning from his father at the family’s Ikeda Bonsai Nursery. He also studied with John Naka, Harry Hirao, and Khan Komai. He belongs to many bonsai clubs including California Bonsai Society, and Nampu Kai. Mel has been very active with the Golden State Bonsai Federation and their annual Bonsai-A-Thon, where he regularly conducts a demonstration.

Mel will work on a raft style bonsai for our meeting. It is a style we don’t get to see very often, so it will undoubtedly inspire members to give raft style a try.

See you there.

Meeting Time and Place:
October 12, 2019 at 7pm
LAC Arboretum/ Palm Room

President’s Corner

We officially passed through the last days of summer. I am thankful we didn’t have the waves of extreme heat we experienced last year. None of my trees suffered heat damage, so I hope everyone had a similar experience.

The weather forecasts seem to indicate we are entering the Fall season at last. Now is a great time for collecting seeds to start new trees. You can start trees from seed and potentially have a nice shohin size tree in five or six years. At my age that seems manageable, plus I never get tired of seeing new tree shoots pop through the soil, just as I enjoy seeing new buds emerge from cuttings!

October brings the GSBF Convention, to be held in Riverside this year, Oct. 23-28. There are fees for attending and either observing or participating in workshops, seminars, and critiques. However, there is no cost to viewing the bonsai exhibit or shopping in the vender area. There will be trees in every price category and everything else related to bonsai. The convention provides a complete bonsai extravaganza for beginners and experts alike. See the website for more details,


Sept 2019 Meeting Highlights

Our September meeting was hosted by David and June Nguy at their home in Chino. Again, due to a Saturday night concert conflict at the Arboretum, we had the pleasure of walking through David and June’s bonsai collection. It is always such a treat for us to see all the beautiful trees and be in awe of the effort and talent it took to create such a collection. We are very appreciative of the hospitality and support shown by David and June.

Prior to David beginning his demonstration, we had our potluck dinner. Thanks go to June, Michelle, Marissa, Wendy, Lorraine and others for preparing and setting up all the food for our dinner. We had a wonderful feast.

David Nguy provided a demonstration using a prostrata juniper. The material was a double-trunk tree, so David styled it in the traditional mother/daughter or husband/wife form. He explained the apex and direction of the taller trunk would determine the direction of the shorter trunk. The directions would match to maintain harmony and scale with the taller side overseeing the shorter.

David talked about the importance of having the apex subtly leaning forward with the branch tips turned slightly forward to welcome the viewer. He cleaned out the old, inside foliage to both provide space for wiring and stimulate new growth. David said we should not immediately cut new growth to maintain the tree shape, but let it grow for strength, then cut back to shape.

David’s demonstration resulted in a beautiful design that followed his styling plan. No matter your experience level in bonsai, it is always amazing to see how a master transforms a bushy piece of tree stock into a presentable bonsai. Jim Pelling was the lucky raffle winner who took home the finished tree.

Thanks again to both David and June for providing such a wonderful evening. They both give a great deal of themselves to the art of bonsai, and this was further exemplified by David when he donated his demo fee back to the club. Thank you!

Members Corner

  • The newsletter is always available on our website
  • If you have a knack for writing, a story to tell, a photo or something you would like to share in our newsletter please submit it to Lorraine prior to the 20th of any month at [email protected]
  • Visitors are always welcome at our meetings….come check out SABS anytime
  • A special “thank you” to Steve & Judy Anthony for finding our Nov meeting offsite location at Longo Toyota in El Monte

Thank You to our many Sept Meeting Raffle Donors for your generosity

Upcoming Events

Oct 19-20
Bonsai Stock sale at the home of Jim Barrett
480 Oxford Dr., Arcadia,
9a-4p each day, 20% discount

Oct. 24-27
GSBF Convention 42
Riverside Convention Center
see website for details,

Come Join Us

Next Meeting

Date: October 12, 2019
Time: 7pm
Location: LAC Arboretum, Palm Room
301 N. Baldwin Ave.
Arcadia, CA 91007

2019 Monthly Meeting Dates & Demonstrators

Oct 12 — Mel Ikeda

Nov 9 — Tak Shimazu, meeting at Longo Toyota in El Monte

Dec No meeting– Happy Holidays

Jan 11, 2020 Save the date Annual Potluck & Demo

Refreshment Schedule

Oct Marge Blasingame, Walt & Octavia Chin, Dave & Lorraine Miles, Frank Yee

Nov Bob Alderette, Linda & Gabriel Gonzalez, Victor Shelton

Dec no meeting – Happy Holidays