Bonsai Tonight

GSBF Collection North

Posted in Excursions by Jonas Dupuich on March 4, 2011

After visiting the GSBF Mammoth Fundraiser last weekend, I stopped by the Bonsai Garden at Lake Merritt. Spring is a great time to visit the garden as the quince are in bloom and the maples are just starting to leaf out. It’s also a good time of year to see the blooms that make the winter hazel (Corylopsis spicata) unique.

Corylopsis bloom

Winter hazel blossoms


Winter hazel (Corylopsis spicata)

The garden is home to the largest pomegranate bonsai I’ve seen. According to the garden’s website, the tree was “Dug from an old orchard (thought to have been planted in late 1800s) in Lodi by Vince and Kathy Owyoung. They donated the tree, Sept. 2002. Styled by Seiji Shiba. A glass jar was found embedded in the trunk. Potted at the Garden, Aug. 5, 2008.”


Pomegranate (Punica granatum)

Pomegranate - trunk detail

Pomegranate – trunk detail

A number of Japanese maples had just started to leaf out. The new foliage is beautiful.

Japanese maple

Japanese maple

Japanese maple

Japanese maple foliage

Japanese maple

Japanese maple – note bamboo used to arrange trunks

Japanese maple

Japanese maple grove

I’ve watched the California juniper below develop for close to 15 years – it has an interesting curve to the trunk. From the website: “Collected in 1954 from the high desert region near Palmdale in southern California, this tree was styled about 1964.”

California juniper

California juniper

The fruit on the citrus below puts the tree in perspective. Every visitor that passed by stopped for a closer look.



Tagged with:

4 Responses

Subscribe to comments with RSS.

  1. wayne said, on March 4, 2011 at 10:17 am

    At first I didn’t recognize the California Juniper you posted. Looking back thru pictures I took in 2005 (I think) I found it here: (I didn’t quite get it from the front.)

    Wow has it changed, and for the better.

  2. AlexV said, on March 4, 2011 at 2:46 pm

    I love bonsai gardens in spring, especially the quince. It is probably my favorite time of year. I particularly like the sign asking people not to pick the orange. It practically begs you to grab it and eat it.

    Glad your feeling better Jonas, 2 weeks with no Bonsai tonight is like 2 weeks with no sunshine.


  3. Lieve said, on March 5, 2011 at 3:27 am

    Following your blog in Belgium I wondered what happened when no posts arrived for some weeks. I am pleased to read them again.

    Can you tell me more about the watering system in the pictures of that garden?


  4. xwires said, on March 6, 2011 at 12:03 am

    Hi Lieve – thanks for the note; I was sick and am now better. The watering system used in the garden is a drip system that uses a variety of emitters. The two that appear in the photos are soaker lines and simple drip lines. I don’t know much more than that about how the trees there get watered.

Comments are closed.


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 5,491 other followers

%d bloggers like this: