Newsletter – November 2013

Bonsai Notebook

2013-11-Img01Kathy Benson will be with us at the November meeting to share her styling talents. Kathy brings an extensive art background into her bonsai work. She has a degree in fine arts and has designed and painted prints, posters, and greeting cards using different mediums. She got started in bonsai while living on the east coast and was self-taught.

Kathy moved to California in 1975 and joined the bonsai community here. Her career as an artist brings out her emphasis on design and a natural look to her bonsai. Kathy has been doing bonsai demonstrations for many years and is a regular featured artist at the annual Bonsai-A-Thon.

Join us at the November meeting for a great learning experience with Kathy.

-Dave Miles


Date: November 9, 2013
Time: 7:00 pm (Board Meeting 6pm before general meeting)
Location: LAC Arboretum, Palm Room
301 N. Baldwin Ave.
Arcadia,Ca 91007
Demonstration by: Kathy Benson
Refreshments by: J. Cervantes, E. Janza, D. Miles.  D. Teague


The weather has cooled and winter is fast approaching. Southern California weather has made it possible to begin repotting some of our trees, primarily the conifers. I hope everyone had the opportunity to attend some or all of the Golden State Bonsai Federation convention in Burbank. The workshops, lectures, exhibits and vendors renewed our enthusiasm for the art of bonsai. We came away with new ideas and reminders of old ideas for our trees.

The new website has been a unanimous hit with members. You can view the new website now at If you have event information and/ or articles & resources to share with our club members, please submit to Dave at [email protected] by the 15th of the month. Our thanks again to Robert Sencer for his expertise and time to develop this site.

In Memorium
Kiyoko Kay Komai (92) passed away on 10.23.2013

-Dave Miles


Our October meeting featured Marcus Juniel. As always, Marcus brought an excellent piece of material, a large prostrata juniper from the House of Bonsai. He provided a thoroughly descriptive narrative as he worked on the tree, drawing us into the planning of the design. Marcus asked for audience input on the style, and a beautiful informal upright tree was the result.

Rather than initially determining the front of the tree, Marcus looks for “what is interesting about the tree” and then styles the tree so you see what he wants you to see. In the case of our demo tree, Marcus identified 1.) a low branch flowing down that drew attention and 2.) movement in the trunk that led the eye up the trunk to the apex. The moving trunk lines became the focus for Marcus’s styling. As he picked branches to keep for the design, he explained that branches on the outside of a trunk curve promote trunk growth at that point and accentuate the curve.

Marcus enlisted the help of Bill Hutchinson and new member Tom Lau to assist with wiring the branches. They did a great job helping to move the demo along. Marcus then placed the branches to maximize the key features of the tree. Joe Gutierrez was the lucky winner of the wonderful new bonsai.

-David Miles



The SABS Bonsai Notebook will now be available online and via email or US mail.

If you would like to receive the monthly newsletter electronically please send your email contact  information to Dave Miles at:  [email protected]  or register on our website by clicking on the “Mailing List” link. (Your email information will be kept confidential for newsletter purposes only and will not be shared.)

The Bonsai Notebook Newsletter will also be posted on the  new SABS website. Check out the new SABS website at:


2014 SABS Annual Show
May 24-26 (May 23– set up)

Annual Show Theme: Flowering / Fruiting Trees


Nov 9, 2013 – Demo by Kathy Benson, Refreshments byJ. Cervantes, E. Janza, D. Miles.  D. Teague
December – no meeting
Jan 11, 2014 –  Holiday Potluck & Installation of  Officers
Feb 8, 2014 – TBD


Joyce Gibbs
Tom Lau

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