Hello all! It’s been awhile! It seems it’s taking ten times as long to finish up writing about our trip to Japan as at has actually going! Between work and a problem with my trees(while I am a pot guy, it’s still all about the trees) I haven’t had a free second to post anything for a couple of months. Sorry about that. So, let’s rectify that now. With fall here and winter close behind, I have much more free time. So, I hope to finish up the last 5 posts about the trip this week, then we’ll take a look at some new pots I’ve added to my collection, followed by profiles on Kanzan, Sharaku, and Antique Chinese pots. Let’s get to it!
Let me start off by saying that our visit came at a fortuitous time! Not only did we bump into Masumi San on our way, who gave us directions, but the day before our visit a collector had stopped in to sell a significant portion of his collection. I’ll go into more detail about all that was there in the last post, but here’s a couple of teasers:
Yusens and other majorly pricey pieces
The recently purchased collection covered nearly every surface of the obligatory meeting space, including the floor!
World class Tofukujis, Kouzans, and more Tofukujis!
Koju En is one of the top 3 Shohin Nurseries in Japan, and the trees certainly didn’t disappoint! Masumi San and his father were both very friendly and indulged us, despite the poor, rainy weather.
Veritable seas of world class Shohin bonsai!
Various Species: Akebia, Zelcova, Beauty Berry, and more!
Really impressive and large Kifu Sekka Hinoki
Various Species: beauty berry, pines, osteomeles, chojubai, Viburnum…
And still more maples, this time Kaede!
A Pyracantha in a Koyo pot showing some fruit.
Masumi San, me, and the nurseries’ founder, gracious hosts and great artists!
Apparently, one can’t visit Kyoto without seeing some of the temples, and our guide wasn’t remiss in making sure we absorbed some non-bonsai related Japanese Culture.
A stork flees while I try to snap his photo
One of the few highlights of the poor weather was the way the water pooled inside these leaves
Next we visited Kiyomizu Dera. A fair hike into the hills, through rolling streets filled with vendors, and the occasional Geisha, the hike up to the temple, and the temple itself, is like a microcosm of what Kyoto is: a strange mix of the very modern and the very ancient. Kyoto seems to have both feet firmly planted in two entirely different times.
Pilgrims are supposed to drink from this cultivated spring for good luck and prosperity.
The foundation pillars. Massive!
Far in the distance, another temple.
Old pine, it’s elongated branches supported by bamboo beams.
Located in a beautiful and tranquil forest, a bit out of the way, was Yamataen. The bonsai there were spectacular, and run the gamut from shohin and kusamono to omono size bonsai, deciduous and Conifers. Despite the rain and mist, it was well worth the visit.
Sorry for the poor photo, but keep an eye out for this pine this February!
An awesome hawthorn, with Matt Ouwinga in the background on the right, and Neil Dellinger peeking around the left.
Root over rock Kaede, with Peter peeking around on the right.
Big and well ramified Chinese Quince.
A large and want tree. Can’t remember the variety, and the poor weather wasnt as conducive to photos as I would’ve liked.
Assorted pines and Junipers, shohin and chuhin size.
A couple of Shohin Japanese Maples.
And we’ll finish up our look at the bonsai at Yamataen with this massive Beauty Berry forest.
Thanks for coming along with me, again, and after such a long time. Ill have plenty of time to post all winter, so the articles should keep rolling out, a couple a week, for the next few months!
Up later today or tomorrow: we visit our friends at Fujikawa Kouka-En, Yoshoen, and drive a ways to Miura Baijuen. Stay tuned, and thanks for reading!
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