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News from Sakura Bonsai Gallery

I hope to find the time to add some news on cleaning up my neglected collection.

Some nice autumn colour starting to show in these Japanese Trident Maples at The Australian Bonsai Gallery.  Updated video clips can be viewed at our YouTube Feed HERE.

australian bonsai gallery autumn 2020 trident maples

This old Japanese Black Pine has been in 'rehab' for the last few years.  Last years' fertilising, foliage balancing, and a late Summer 'first flush' cut has see a great response with a healthy, even second flust now matured.  Same process for this Autumn with the addition of some fefinement and finer wiring.  On it's way to becoming a reasonably good bonsai.

Autumn 2020 - Before and After needle plucking, bud selection and wiring.japanese black pine bonsai 34 before after 2020 04 22 

Autumn Needle plucking and bud selection is a very time consuming job for the bonsai enthusiast; ... BUT spare a thought for gardeners in Japan who perform these tasks on large, full grown street trees in Kyoto. !!
I was gob-smacked to see people on ladders in the streets of Kyoto, in 2016, working on such a scale. !!!   I will never complain about this job ever again !!!

jbp needle plucking Kyoto Autumn 2016


Needle plucked and bud selected, this old white pine is ready for wiring and a little refinement in form......

... the joy of self-isolation !!!!!!   Stay Safe all.

goyo matsu australian bonsai gallery 39

Japanese White pines can be needle plucked, bud selected, prunes, and wired now that the spring/summer growth has matured.  This one is still in development.

The Australian Bonsai Gallery has more white pines to work on before the collections' Black and Red Pines are ready for the same treatment.

japanese white pine 08

The Australian Bonsai Gallery has been working hard on these Trident Maples over the growing season.  Just waiting for the Autumn to work it's magic and transform these bonsai into a blaze of colour.

trident maple group 01

FINALLY.... my new bonsai pot has arrived from Japan. I was fortunate enough to have own the bid on this... Yamaaki pot by Mr.KATAOKA Sadamitsu.

I have been looking for the 'perfect' pot for a very old Trident Maple in the collection...... now this is it.!!

yamaaki Mr KATAOKA Sadamitsu bonsai pot


Does anyone recognise this 'chop' stamp ?  I have a number of old bonsai pots with this mark.  After going over hundredsof known stamps I am at a loss as to the identity of these pots.

Many thanks to Konatsu Honda who so kindly offered this translation "I see 常滑焼(Tokoname-yaki) is the maker and 山晃釜(Yamakou-gama)is the kiln."

unknown chop


The Australian Bonsai Gallery is selling a number of old, well developed focus bonsai.  Most are old 'yamadori' collected over 30 years ago and developed as bonsai.

For more detail Go to the Bonsai Catalogue

australian bonsai gallery ficus sale

More bonsai sold and going to a great home.  The genesis of a collection in the hands of some very capable young people.

sakura bonsai gallery bonsai sale

Some refinement improvements on these Chinese Elms in our For Sale Catalogue.  

australian bonsai gallery chinese elms 2019 10


With the unusually hot weather I have started work on my Ficus Bonsai.  These, and many others, will be up for sale soon.

ficus rubiginosa 12

ficus rubiginosa 11


A friend has identified this pot as, possibly, being made in Seto, Japan.  The 'chop' has also been identified - 祖洞園池勝製 .  I have seen similar pots on Japanese auction sites, but the bamboo design is not the same, and the pots were not signed.

It has been a real curiosity ever since I purchased it from a second-hand store many years ago for the sum of $24.00.

Can anyone can 'shed some light' on the history of this pot ??.

sato pot australian bonsai gallery


Evrything I read about the Japanese Red Pine - Akamatsu - tells me that they are not as vigerous as the Black pine, and should not be needle thinned as much as JBP's.

Well, no one has told this old Akamatsu.... I call it  Gakushū (学習); it means 'learning' as this bonsai still bears the 'scars' of 43 years of 'trial & error'.

japanese red pine 08Gakushū (学習)

This old Kuromatsu has been in the Australian Bonsai Gallery collection for almost 40 years.  It was developed as an 'informal upright' from an very early age.

The styling was very 'naive' and reflected my inexperience at the time.  It was high time for a change!  It is, now, on it's way to a better form.

japanese black pine bonsai 04 literati

Old Japanese Black Pine will be On Sale Soon.  It has a good nebari, has been needle thinned, bud selected, and wired last Autumn.  Proactive fertilising throughout Autumn and Winter has seen very active and even 'first-flush' candle growth this Spring.
This is a bonsai worthy of further refinement.  Please Contact Us if you are interested in this tree.japanese black pine 42a

Going through some images of our last trip to Japan and found this very old Goyomatsu with massive nebari.  The width of the nebari is ~70cm !!!

massive nebari

This old Kuromatsu was a generous gift from a very accomplished bonsai artist many years ago.  Ian Hearn is probably one of the best black Pine bonsai growers in Australia and I was privileged to have been gifted this tree after it had been developed and shaped by Ian.

The small image here is of the original Japanese seed packet from which this bonsai had started from seed in 1970.  

The story behind bonsai like this one is an important part of the history of bonsai and must be preserved.  The story, and provenance, adds a richness to the art of bonsai.

Kuro matsu spring 2019 seed pack

Bonsai Open LogoThe Bonsai Open competition is the initiative of the Central Coast Bonsai Club. 

Congratulations to Steve Reeves and his team for organising this great event.  

bonsai open australian bonsai gallery

bonsai open resultsaustralian bonsai gallery



Birdbaths are an essential part of our gardens and Bonsai Gallery due to the very dry conditions.  Just had to stop work in the gallery to record this clip of silvereyes in one of our birdbaths.  This species migrates all the way from Tasmania !!  A mighty effort for such a tiny bird.


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