Newsletter – October 2017

2017-10-Img01Bonsai Notebook

Our October meeting features the founding president of our club, Jim Barrett.  Jim has been involved with the bonsai art since the 1950’s.  He bought his first trees from the San Gabriel Nursery.

Jim met Khan Komai in 1958 when Khan opened his bonsai nursery.  He learned from Khan and eventually started teaching classes at the nursery.  Jim has been teaching ever since.

Jim has served as president of many bonsai organizations besides ours including Bonsai Clubs International, Golden State Bonsai Federation, and Descanso Bonsai Society.

In addition to his bonsai work, Jim has been a ceramist for decades, making bonsai pots.  He is known for his shohin pots and mini-pots, but his main interest has been in making large pots modeled after Japanese and Chinese designs.

Come and see Jim at work at the October meeting.

Meeting Time And Place:
October 14 at 7pm
LAC Arboretum/ Palm Room

President’s Corner

2017-10-Img02October is GSBF convention month.  It will be held in Riverside Oct. 25-29.  Go to the website for all the details:

The convention is a great opportunity for anyone interested in bonsai to be exposed to the best we have to offer.  There will be an exhibit with magnificent trees on display.  The workshops and seminars will provide a chance to learn from some of the best bonsai artists in the world.

At the convention the vendor area will have everything there is related to the bonsai art; trees, tools, pots, books, wire and more.  You can register and participate in the programs available, or you can go and just view the    exhibit and shop in the vendor area.  Regardless, if you love bonsai , don’t miss this event.


Member Update

We would like to take this opportunity to both thank and recognize the Cash Family from Riverside for their generous donation to SABS. Susan Cash contacted us in August  following the recent passing of her husband.  Mr. Cash cared for a small number of bonsai trees, some more than 25 years old. Susan was looking for a new home for these trees as she was concerned about her ability to care for them properly. Robert Sencer, our webmaster and longtime club member spoke with Susan and offered to collect her husbands trees and find them new homes.  Some of these trees were added to the raffle  table at our Sept Potluck meeting and others will be included on the raffle table at meetings in the upcoming months. We want to once again thank the Cash family for their donation and offer our sincere condolences.

September Meeting Highlights

The September meeting was amazing.  We had a great location and a great demonstration.  David and June Nguy graciously  provided their bonsai garden and nursery for the meeting.  After walking through  and seeing the beautiful trees on display and the bountiful supply of pre-bonsai stock, we settled into a spacious outdoor seating area for the demo.  Before the demo started, we were treated to a potluck  dinner provided by the members and arranged by June, Marissa, Wendy, and Lorraine.


Ted Matson presented a program using crape myrtles as his material.  Ted started by emphasizing that it is important to understand your material; its characteristics and growth habits.  When and how you prune is dependent on this  understanding.

Ted described crape myrtle as a subtropical, deciduous material with nice bark and flowers.  It exhibits an aggressive Fall growth push, so you can do a lot of work on the material in the late summer.  Ted said crape myrtles can develop scale, but it can be controlled with an oil spray.  Any powder mildew that appears should be washed off with water early in the day so it is not moist going into the evening.


Ted explained that branches thicker than pencil size are not very bendable, so wire should only be used  on narrower branches.  Crape myrtle has an alternating bud pattern, so directional pruning works well.  He talked about how big cuts on the material heal well when the cuts are smoothed over to blend with the shape of the trunk or branch.  He recommended we avoid making concave cuts.

Ted suggested we practice our pruning timing by keeping track of how long it takes from cut to flower.  This will allow you to cut back to a point where flowering will fill out the tree shape instead of overgrowing it.

If you don’t take notes when Ted is speaking, you are missing the chance to document the one of the best over-all presenters we have the good fortune to see and hear.  Ted provided all of this detail while demonstrating his pruning techniques, first on a chuhin size myrtle and then on several shohin size trees.  He donated three of the shohin trees to our raffle. Thank you Ted.

2017-10-Img05The lucky raffle winners of Ted’s shohin demo trees were:
June Nguy, Dave Miles, and Liz Do.

Newsletter Update

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 Dave & Lorraine prior to the 20th of any month at: [email protected]

Upcoming Events

October 7-8
Conejo Valley Bonsai Society 14 Annual Bonsai Exhibition
at the Resource Center, Gardens of the World, 2001 Thousand Oaks Blvd., Thousand Oaks, CA
Hours 9a-4p both days, demonstrations at 2p.

October 25-29
GSBF Convention
Riverside, CA
workshops demonstrations, raffles, large sales area, exhibition
the big event of the year; see website for details and registration,

Come Join Us

Next Meeting
Date: October 14, 2017
Time: 7 pm

LAC Arboretum, Palm Room
301 N. Baldwin Ave
Arcadia, Ca  91007

No Board Meeting Oct

2017 Monthly Meeting Dates

Oct 14 —- Jim Barrett
Nov 11 —- Kathy Benson
Dec  —– no meeting

2017 Refreshment Schedule

Oct —- Linda Gonzalez, Judy Anthony, Peter Macasieb, Allan Sugimura

Nov —- Linda Gonzalez, Peter Macasieb, Frank Yee, Tom Lau