chewing ideas down to stubble, then moving on…


Here are my trees thus far. Click on any tree for a larger picture and vote for your favorite at the bottom!

**NEW TREES AS OF JANUARY ’09** The following four trees are new that I got from working for grower man Dave.

This is Fat Bottom Ollie, and I picked this olive tree because he has a real gnarly and monstrous root base. Not quite sure what I’m going to do with the rest of him yet, but I’ll give him a little while to recover from the hard pruning he just got a couple weeks ago. He’s in a 1-gallon pot, to give you all some perspective.

Check out the gnarly base!

Check out the gnarly base!

Second comes Twisty Ollie, so named for obvious reasons. Dave wanted to see what I could do with this guy. He’ll be ready for a bonsai pot in a year or two maybe. I might try and get the base to thicken up by letting some suckers grow for a while before cutting them back, but I have to wait until spring ’09 to see what pops up.

This has some cool movement!

This has some cool movement!

This is Gramps, the pomegranate. It’s not like he’s older than any of the other trees, but the name sounds good with pomegranate. Pretty much all of the branches were straight up when I found him in Dave’s growing yard, and we wired him up (or down, I should say) to approximate a broom-style tree. It’s been rumored that he produces a buttload of flowers in the spring/summer. He’s in a cut-down 5-gallon container, so quite a bit bigger than the olives.

Wait till spring!

Wait till spring!

Rounding out the new trees is Shari the juniper. Shari is a Japanese bonsai term that refers to the big scar of deadwood coming up from the base. This is a pretty big tree: the base is about 3.5-4 inches at soil level. This is probably the closest to actual finished bonsai that I have. Dave wanted me to grab something that would be showable in the near future in return for my helping him out with his elms the other day.

This is a big one!

This is a big one!

This is Little Ollie, my first olive tree that I got from my first beginner bonsai class. Hopefully within like 10 years the wound on his right side will heal. He has been in his pot since August, 08.

Little Ollie

Little Ollie

Next comes Pine Doe. I won this little dude in a club raffle, and I have absolutely no clue what species he is. However, Pine Doe has very good taper up toward his apex, but not a lot of flare at the base.

Pine Doe

Pine Doe

Pepe, the San Jose Juniper, is our next victim. I’ve been working on him in my second beginner class. I just potted him in early November 08, and he’s kinda wild.

Black Background w/ flash

Pepe, the San Jose Juniper

And now my prized tree, Oakie…well, not like he’s won any prizes, but he was the biggest  tree in my little clan. He’s a Coast Live Oak (quercus agrifolia), one of the most majestic trees that are native to my great state. Oakie has been recovering quite well from his previous amputations (see an earlier post), as can be seen by numerous leaves and buds popping up all over his trunk.



Well, there’s the family. I have some twin Sycamore trees that are in the works, so I’ll post some pics once I get them split into their own pots. For now, though, I would love to know which tree you all like the best.


I know the names are totally corny, but whatever…

I’ve written several posts regarding bonsai. You can check the categories or click below.

New Acquisitions in the Bonsai World

Xmas UPDATE: Coast Live Oak

Bonsai Blunder

Symmetry vs. Asymmetry in Bonsai

Bonsai and Healing?

Bonsai: Illusion or Impression?

Bonsai for Non-Bonsai People

UPDATE: Bonsai, Coast Live Oak

Let Us Not Take Our Art Too Seriously

Mad Bonsai Skills, Baby!

Contradictions, Hypocrisy, Layers of Me

Bonsai, Coast Live Oak


6 Responses to “Bonsai”

  1. rockChester said

    Are you in the San diego Bonsai club. I am and l live in east county.

    Good luck dude


  2. Jason said

    Yup I’m in the club. I grew up in Santee, good to see a fellow east-countian in the wonderful sport of bonsai. I just finished my second beginner class and am signed up for the new beginner round in Jan.

    See you around,


  3. Big Dave RockChester said

    That great.. Those were my olives that were used for the class. started those babies from cuttings.

    Taught the beginner class for 5 years . And have provided the trees for 8. really is fun. But health been messin me up right now ,hard to keep up !

    later –Dave

    What do you do for a living Jason ?

  4. Jason said

    My many thanks for the trees! You’ve done a great service to all of us bonsai-babies!
    I teach middle school music in Escondido…sometimes a great job sometimes horrible…I can’t complain one bit, though. There’s a bit more info on the about me page, but not much hehe.


  5. Big Dave RockChester said

    Duh okay I see it now.

    Middleschool is a squirelly age ,eh?

    Do you go to the n-county club? San pu Kai

    If you ever need trees,or lessons/practice I have informal groups over from time to time,no cost just hang out eat pizza, work on the bonsai, stuff like that…gotta run

    Big Dave

  6. Jason said

    Yeah they’re pretty nuts sometimes. Never been to the N-county club. I live in Kearny Mesa, so Balboa Park is a hop skip and a jump away. I’d love to be in on any groups you have. I could use the extra practice/trees/guidance! Keep me posted! I think I chatted with you before, so I know who you are. I’ll come find you next meeting and properly introduce myself…

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