Friday Photos–Bonsai and Palms

Country Ripples

Here are some more pictures from the flower show my friend and I attended.  The first two are examples of the Japanese art of bonsai. Some of the trees in the Bonsai Room were 30 or 40 years old; one tree was 50 years old. In the second photo, there is a miniature figurine “fishing” at the edge of the container. The show also has many palm trees from around the globe, and the third picture displays some of the palms.

I discovered the flower show to be an unusual and fun way to learn geography, as many of the flowers and plants, particularly in the Spice Room and the Palm Room, were displayed with small plaques telling what part of the world the plants come from.

Bonsai, PhippsBonsai and miniature figureMore palms at Phipps

For more info. about the art of bonsai, check out:, and

For info. about the many forms palms take: look at:…

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Winter Warmth

Bonsai Iterate

Compared to the Midwest United States, where I grew up, winters in Northern Virginia are rather mild. Most daytime highs are well above freezing. Occasionally, however, we get a blast of very cold, arctic air, like the one rolling in today, which causes worry for the well-being of my bonsai, accustomed-as-they are to this milder climate.

Some of you may have read about the expansion and improvement of my winter storage cabinet. (You can go HERE if you want to check it out.) I’ve been thrilled with it’s performance thus far. When closed, this enclosure is generally six to ten degrees warmer than outside temperatures, and I attribute that difference solely to the radiant heat from the house and enclosed window.

As good as this is, the forecast is calling for single digit temperatures (Fahrenheit) which is cause for concerns for a few of the more tender, less cold-hardy specimens…

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Working Back a Boxwood

Bonsai Iterate

Even after 20+ years in bonsai I am still trying to learn patience. In the case of one chunky boxwood that I collected a couple of years ago, I am practicing that patience while I gradually work the tree back to a size appropriate for a future, finished tree.

If you’ve ever looked at large boxwood growing in someone’s landscaping, you may have seen how the branches can grow quite long and only have leaves out at the ends. That outer foliage can be so dense that the shaded inner branches may be completely leafless. This was the case with this old landscape plant, so it will take some time to build strong enough growth closer to the trunk.

As you can see in the photo above, the tree is already doing this sort of serious growing. The more-than-12-inch branch I am holding in my hand has grown from nothing…

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Through Open Lens

F/ 6.3, 1/1000, ISO 640.

Great Blue Heron

A magician was performing on cruise ship and each night while performing his pet parrot keeps saying:

“its up his sleeve”

” its in his pocket”.

“its in his shoe”.

“in his pants”.

Etc. and the magician was loosing his patience. one night while performing his tricks the ships boilers blew and the ship sank, the lucky magician was able to grab onto a ships table and float on the sea for a few days. the parrot in the mean time seemed non plussed and was looking quizzically at the magician for a few days whilst drifting. On the 4th day the parrots looks at his master and says:

“I give up… what did you do with the ship?”

Interesting Fact: Great Blue Herons have specialized feathers on their chest that continually grow and fray. The herons comb this “powder down” with…

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