Austin Bonsai Society

March 2001

Presidentís Message

Candy Hansen

It is almost March by the calendar (where did February go?) and outdoor work began for real in our yard. The weather was so nice the entire weekend was spent outside, doing some big yard work and some work in the bonsai pots.

Out Spring activities for our Bonsai Club also begin in earnest with our March meeting. Mr. Susumu Nakamura from Yokohama, Japan will be our guest presenter this month. There will be time for several fortunate people to have this teacher discuss a favorite, or problem tree's styling. See Pg. 7 for info on how to be one of them.

The Board would like to remind you to bring trees in to the meeting every month to share, as in show and tell, because they are interesting, doing their unique thing like blooming, or just because. We all like to see what everyone else is doing.

March brings the start of show season this year, too, with the LSBF Show in Dallas. I hope to see many of you there. It is a good way to have a large dose of bonsai, meet many people from all around the state, and learn some new approaches to your own trees.
See you at the meeting - Happy potting!!

Calendar of Events

Mar. 10 Crash Course at Persimmon Hill
9:30 AM (See previous newsletters)

Mar. 14 Monthly Meeting
A Masterís Touch
Mr. Susumu Nakamura
7:30 PM
Zilker Garden Center
Refreshments by:
Glenda Konopka
Terry & Sheila Ward

Mar. 21 Board Meeting
7:00 PM
Zilker Garden Center

Mar. 28 Members workshop
See previous newsletters for info
7:30 PM
Zilker Garden Center

March 23-25 LSBF in Dallas

Mar. 3l - Apr. 1 Zilker Garden Festival

April 12-15 ABS in New Orleans

April 27-29 25th Anniversary
Natíl Bonsai/Penjing Museum
Washington, DC

May 12-13 San Antonioís Annual Show
Auld House@Botanical Gard.

May 19-20 Austinís Annual Show

May 25-28 Bonsai Societies of Florida

May 31-June 4 4th World Conv.

General Meeting Minutes

by David Gordon

The February 2001 meeting of the Austin Bonsai Society was called to order at 7:30 PM. by president Candy Hansen.

New members Wayne Mueller, Angela DeNeen and Mack Robertson were introduced a motion that the minutes for the January meeting be approved as read in the newsletter was seconded and approved by the members.

The treasurer's report was given by Pat Ware. Membership dues are due now in order to have you name in the directory. A motion to accept the treasurer's report was approved by those in attendance.

Old Business:

Pat Ware requested that if anyone is not getting the newsletter, please contact her. The club dig originally scheduled for February 18, 2001, has been changed to February 24, 2001.

Chuck Ware made a brief presentation about the upcoming LSBF convention.

Pat Ware announced that Dr. William Welch, a well known botanist and excellent speaker, will be speaking at the Garden Center at 7:00 PM. on February 27, 2001. The title of his speech is "Growing Cut Flowers in Your Garden."

Elaine White mentioned that Don Freeman of the Garden Council is very pleased with the way the permanent collection is coming along. The Council is looking forward to this addition to the gardens.

Pat Ware mentioned that volunteers are needed for the Garden Festival. Be sure to report hours to Don Rehberg.

President Candy asked for volunteers to help clear the area for the permanent collection. This will be on Monday, October 19, 2001.

President Candy asked for a volunteer for the Texas Star Demonstration at the LSBF convention. There were no volunteers so someone will be appointed.

Volunteers are needed for refreshments at the meetings. Four spots are open. Call Pat Ware.

New Business:

The Austin Bonsai Society Board meets on Wednesday, February 21, 2001.

Program Chairman Gloria Norberg discussed the program for March. Susumu Nakamura from Japan will be here. He will critique trees that members bring. Contact Gloria if you would like his expert advice on your tree. A $15. fee will be charged by the club to help with expenses. This is a bargain considering that Mr. Nakamura is a renowned bonsai artist and teacher. This is a rare opportunity to have a world class instructor help make suggestions on how you can improve your tree.

Dr. Bill Cody presented an excellent program on roots.

Meeting adjourned at 9:30 PM.

Susumu Nakamura

Mike Hansen

For over 25 years, Mr. Susumu Nakamura has been a legend among bonsai hobbyist in the United States, Canada, Australia, Europe, India and well as Japan. Several years ago while attending a bonsai show in Chicago, we had the honor to meet this delightful man. His rare and reverent perspective of life, nature and bonsai left an impression that we shall not forget. A friendship was born that weekend which continues to grow to this day.

Mr. Nakamura was introduced to Texas at the Texas State Bonsai Convention, in 1991, which was hosted by the Austin Bonsai Society. During that event, Mr. Nakamura quite simply fell in love with Texas and Texans and vice versa; and he has returned to teach in Texas every year since them.

For those of you who have not met Mr. Nakamura, he is the Director of Education for the Nippon Bonsai Association, and he is the long time chairman of the NBAís Kokufu Bonsai Exhibition which is held at the Tokyo Museum of Art in February each year. In addition to his involvement with the Nippon Bonsai Association, Mr.. Nakamura is past Director of Bonsai Clubs International and was featured at the BCI 2000 Convention in Hawaii. He will conduct a forest-style bonsai demonstration on Sunday, April 29, 2001 as part of the 25th Anniversary of the National Bonsai and Penjing Museum in Washington, DC.

He is founder and proprietor of the Shonan Garden Center which is a bonsai nursery and studio that he operates along with his youngest son Makoto at their home in Yokohama, Japan.

Mr. Nakamura is in great demand as a teacher in Japan and around the world. We have found him to be an extraordinary teacher. This will be a rare opportunity to study with an world class bonsai instructor, so donít miss it.

Board Meeting Minutes

David Gordon

The February Board meeting of the Austin Bonsai Society was held on February 21, 2001. President Candy Hansen presided. Members in attendance were Els Ulg, Jim Baumann, Gloria Norberg, Pat Ware, Mike Swenson and David Gordon. Past president Alisan Clarke and Chuck Ware were also present.

Old Business:

Gloria Norberg discussed programs for the rest of the year. Mr. Nakamura will present the program for March. Programs and program dates for the remainder of the year will be published in the yearbook.

Mike Hansen has volunteered to represent our club at the Texas Stars program at the upcoming LSBF convention.

Jimbo discussed the display the club has been asked to present at the Zilker Garden Festival. There will be a display of Bonsai trees in various stages of development.

The Permanent Bonsai Collection has been given space at the Garden Festival. Brochures about the permanent collection will be available to expand awareness.

New Business:

Gloria Norberg brought up the possibility of having a display at the monthly bonsai meeting. The purpose of the display is a subtle educational tool to help members learn how to display trees. The board will ask one member each month to present a display. Candy and Mike Hansen will present the display for March. David Gordon will make arrangements with other members for displays for the remainder of the year.

Book reports were discussed. It was decided to have several book reports again this year. Els Ulug will make arrangements to have a member present book reports.

Gloria Norberg asked about the possibility of having our logo put on the sympathy and good cheer cards the club sends out. It was decided that cards with the logo will be printed. Pat Ware will print several and bring them to the next meeting for review.

Ash Juniper

Libby Pulley

(with permission)
Latin name: juniperus ashei
AKA: mountain cedar, cedar brake, Texas cedar, sabino, enebro, tascate, taxate, post cedar, cedro, blue-berry juniper, rock cedar, Ozark white cedar

We call them cedar trees, but actually these evergreens are classified as junipers, members of the cypress family and the division coniferophyta (cone bearing plants). The species name, ashei, is in honor of the American botanist William Willard Ashe (1872-19032). Ashe junipers are the most common trees in the Austin area, flourishing especially in the limestone soil and full sun of the hill country.

All parts of the cedar tree are used by man and other animals. Extracted cedarleaf oil is appreciated for its clean smell and used in a variety of household and other products. Tree resin contains up to 75% camphor (think Vicks VapoRub) and is used medicinally. Birds and mammals feast on the blue berries, and the endangered Golden Cheeked Warbler uses (exclusively) the sloughed bark of the very mature old growth trees for making its nest. Of course, cedar wood has been used by man for centuries for a myriad of products, from arrow shafts to fence posts.

Ashe junipers exist in two reproductive forms, like people do. There are male trees and female trees. Female trees are the ones that have the beautiful frosty blue-green berries, which are actually fleshy-scaled tiny cones in which seeds are produced. Male trees produce bright yellow projections which emit the dreaded pollen that causes cedar fever. A truly impressive sight is that of a male cedar tree at the moment the conditions are just right and it releases a yellow cloud of pollen. (Aaaachewww!) Reprinted from Tree Clinic Quarterly, 1st Quarter,2001.

LSBF-Dallas Convention

The time is getting short to experience the two international bonsai artists in one convention.

Although Mr. Pedro Morales hails from Puerto Rico, he is well versed in the use of non-tropical material for bonsai and does presentations throughout the world. At the Friday night dinner demonstration he will be working on a large San Jose juniper. His olive workshop on Saturday quickly sold out but there are a couple of slots on the Friday buttonwood workshop.

Mr. Craig Coussins comes from the celtic country of Scotland. He is famous (or infamous, depending upon your view of large bonsai) for creating forest planting on very large slabs. Since most of us do not have the room or the hired help to handle that type of planting, we are having him rein in his talents a bit and create a seiju elm forest on a 3-4 foot slab. This will be done after the Saturday evening dinner. Both of Mr. Coussins workshops, the Shohin Black Pine and the Trident Maple workshops aree sold out.

The Japanese maple forest on a natural slab by Mr. Greg Setter has also been sold out.

The vendor area promises to be a good one this year with a couple of new faces. Mas and Gary Ishii of Chikugo-en Bonsai and Shane Cary Bonsai will be here. Sadly Sara Rayner had to cancel but we have secured Michael Hagedorn Pottery to fill her spot. I am looking forward to see what Allen Roach of the Wood Furniture Craft Works will spring on us. Other 'old' friends that will be with us are: Jade Gardens, Artistic Plants, Bent Tree Bonsai, Bonsai Mountain Garden, MBP Bonsai, Persimmon Hill Bonsai, Renaissance Bonsai, Vitos Bonsai and Tokonoma Bonsai.

If any one from out of town has a young person they would like to have in the youth workshop, we would appreciate an advance registration so that they will be sure to have a spot.

Again, if you have any questions please call Sylvia Smith at 972-392-1430 ( or John Miller 903-776-2910 (

website at

LSBF Minutes

January 20, 2001 Austin Area Garden Center, Austin, Tx.

The President Buddy Allen called the meeting to order at 12:55 PM.

Chuck Ware moved that the minutes of the last meeting be accepted as presented. Bob Swindle seconded. Motion passed. Pat Ware distributed the Treasurerís report. December 31, 2000 budgeted balance is $6496.21. The estimated income from the 2001 convention is $2700. Budget expenses for 2001 are projected to be $3792. yielding an anticipated year-end balance of $5404.81. The guest speakerís airfare budget was raised from $800. to $900. due to rising cost. Pat stated since the net LSBF meeting will not be held at the convention time so no funds were allocated for the meal but the hospitality account was increased to cover the luncheon meeting to be held in June. The Texas Bonsai publications budget is raised to the proposed $925. A table of the dues and benefits received by each LSBF club for the past ten years was include in the financial report. Kathleen Williamson moved the 2001 budget be approved as presented. John Miller seconded. Motion passed Bob Swindle moved that the Treasurerís report be approved. Chuck Ware seconded. Motion passed.

Chuck Ware presented the draft schedule for our guest speaker Hal Mahoney. Chuck stated Halís fee is $250. per program. Kathleen Williamson moved that LSBF provide $100. for each event up to two events per club and consider a possibility of increasing the supplement for the second events in the June LSBF meeting. Bob Swindle seconded. Motion passed.

Chuck presented that Mary Miller is available and has agreed to be our Texas Tour Speaker in June 2002. Maryís fee is $250. per program. John Miller moved that we approve Mary as our guest speaker. Bob Swindle seconded. Motion passed.

John Miller presented a list of sixteen vendors that have committed to attend the convention. Howard Smith stated that there are 44 full registrants signed up so far. Howard stated that most of the workshops are totally booked except for three slots left in the Black Pine and seven in the Buttonwood. The Buttonwoods were hand selected by Shane Cary from Mary Millersí nursery stock.

Chuck Ware gave a review of the plans for the November 2002 Convention. Marc Nolander, Dennis Makishima and Pat Brodie will be the guest presenters.

Attendees discussed ideas to fill the 2003 gap in the convention schedule. Kathleen Williamson made a motion that LSBF sponsor the 2003 symposium. Libby Huffman seconded. Discussion continued regarding the need for small core group and leader to meet before the June meeting to make preliminary plans for the event. Yvonne Padilla volunteered to lead a group of 3-4 selected team members. Yvonne requested recommendations from each club. Buddy asked for approval of this team via a show of hands. Motion carried.

Libby Huffman request a copy of the LSBF handbook for the San Antonio club.

Chuck recommended that we have a small group review past minutes to recap past practices. Kathleen volunteered to review these and asked for a copy of the roster of attendees to contact if questions arise.

Pat Ware recommended that the LSBF videotapes be disposed of in a raffle at the convention. Subsequent discussions resulted in a motion made by Libby Huffman to raffle three videotapes at this convention and the remaining two at the next convention. Bob Swindle seconded. Motion carried.

Terry Ward stated that the CDís of all the past Texas Bonsai issues fro the first issue in 1982 through the fall of 2000 should be complete this summer.

Terry Ward requested that each club submit a list of their delegates and alternates and the number of Texas Bonsai they will require for 2001.

Buddy Allen read a letter from the Beaumont bonsai group asking what they need to do to come back into LSBF. Consensus of the attendees is to request the following: 1) a letter asking for reinstatement into LSBF, 2) $2. per member dues, 3) a copy of their by-laws, 4) the names of their delegate and alternate. Chuck Ware made a motion that we encourage their interest and provide the items listed. Bob Swindle seconded. Motion carried.

John Miller discussed a liability insurance coverage proposal for LSBF that would provide protection for all sponsored event that cost $100. per year. Several of the clubs already have liability insurance so it was recommended that John research our options to present a the next meeting. John agreed.

Bob Swindle moved the meeting be adjourned. Libby Huffman seconded. Motion carried. Buddy Allen declared the meeting adjourned at 3:07 PM.


It was a great clearing Party ! The weather was perfect, in the 70ís , so we all worked in double time and cleared four ďmountainsĒ of underbrush in six hours. We could only realize we accomplished that much by looking at our ďMountainsĒ.

No, we havenít finished yet. We wanted to leave some fun for the rest of you. A huge Thank You to the following for their hard work:

John Pittenger, Terry & Sheila Ward,
Alisan Clarke, Audrey Lanier, Cliff Rainey,
Tim Arnold, Connie King, Angela DeNeen
and Jim Allan.


Drought-tolerant Plants for Bonsai

Huisache, acacia farnesiana: The sweet acacia or huishache grows from a shrubby plant to a tre reaching 35 feet high. Distinctly vase shaped, heissache is slightly throny, and produces a spectacualr spring floral show of fragrant, yellow, ball-shaped flowers in late winter or early spring. The riverwalk in San Antonio is ablaze with color when these trees bloom after a gray winter.

Texas persimmon, diospyros texana: A shrub to small tree, Texas persimmon may reach 40 feet in clutivation. It grows in thickets ans is a nuisance to ranchers but is easily trimmed to interesting shapes for ornamental use. It has beautiful, peelling owter bark and smooth inner bark with shades of gray, white and pink. Texas (also called Mexican) persimmon produces small, sweet, edible fruit, though full of seed.

Golden-rain tree, koelreuteria paniculata: A very attractive small tree, golen-rain tree is native to the Orient and grows to about 30 feet. It produces excellent spring color when it flowers in bright yellow clusters. Its fruit is nice, too. Papery, bladderlike capsules appear in midsummer and persisit into winter. It is at lease a three-season tree. Golden-rain tree grows almost anywhere. Its only real pest may be the boxelder sbugs, but they do not apear to harm the tree. It has once-compound leaves.

Chinese pistache, pistacia chinensis: The Chinese pistache possess many qualities. Itís nearly pest free, reaches 20 to 30 feet tall, and once extablished it requires little care. It is not attractive as a young tree, but as it matures, it will produce an umbrella camapy. Fall color can be spectacular.

Editorís note: This is part of an article appearing in the Austin Gardener published by the Menís Garden Club of Austin, February, 2001.

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There are still a couple of spots open for the advice from Mr. Nakamura. For a $15.00 charge you can have an expert tell you how your tree can be improved - give you some insight into possibilities you hadnít thought about! Send your check to Pat Ware or call & reserve your spot & pay before the meeting.

Awakening the Soul

This new book is the collection of one of our national treasures, presenting some of the best viewing stones from around the world donated by avid collectors and world leaders. Published in memory of Yuji Yoshimura, Awakening the Soul orchestrates 100 pages of expressive photography, classic design, passionate writing, comprehensive reference, and renaissance craftsmanship. This book is more than a pictorial catalogue - it captures the timeless expressions of Nature, and stimulates the imagination. This work has been produced in limited quantities.

The National Bonsai Foundation and the U.S. National Arboretum are leased to announce the first international symposium on Scholarly Perspectives on Bonsai and Viewing Stones to be held at the National Bonsai and Penjing Museum on October 26-28, 2001. This will be a rare occasion to broaden your knowledge about the history of bonsai and its spread to western countries, and to gain a better understanding about suiseki, viewing stones, Chinese scholar stones, and other beautiful stones. This will also be a unique opportunity to meet and learn from the worldís leading experts.�
Taken from NBF Bulletin, Winter 2000