This year’s BABA show (Bay Area Bonsai Associates) focused on bonsai display. Great care was taken with trees, stands, scrolls, and accents, and the results were quite pleasing. And because the show took place later in the year than last year’s show, there was plenty of color in the room, best typified by the wisteria display below.
Other varieties included standbys like Japanese black pine. The tree below belongs to Dr. Seiji Shiba. I was impressed by the tree’s story. Originally nursery material, Seiji cut the tree down to its lowest branches to make a bonsai. After years of development and some grafting, the tree was able to make its debut at this year’s BABA show. Seiji still thinks it’s on the early side to show the tree – a reflection of his high standards. It’s not easy to make pines from nothing and it’s great to see the results so far.
Many of the displays included scrolls featuring kanji or nature scenes.
A silverberry bonsai made an appearance with an accent planted in what looked to be an antique roof tile. Eleagnus is a great variety for bonsai that’s not often seen in Northern California bonsai exhibits, but I’m hopeful more will crop up in time. It’s also nice to see trees with fruit in March.
One of my favorite displays caught my attention from across the room. I couldn’t tell at first if the show set-up included stand-out wines or if something more was at work. It was some time before I noticed the redwood, planted on a rock, rested on a pillow for a stand.
California coast redwood with 1973 Joseph Phelps Cabernet Sauvignon
Tim Kong did a great job with the display. Photographs featuring several generations of his family provided a personal touch not often found in bonsai exhibits.
Memories of good times
Which made me think how 2010 is off to an interesting start. Already I’ve seen blue people, pots without trees, and wine bottles in somewhat formal bonsai displays. And why not?
Subscribe to Bonsai Tonight
New Posts Delivered Every Tuesday and Friday
Tim told me that the redwood was a stand-in for himself. The display is an imagination of him relaxing on the cushion enjoying his family and some nice wine. All of course with his characteristic sense of humor 🙂