Thursday, July 11, 2024

The Dig, One Year Update

Last year, I posted about a dig (7/24/23)

It's been about year, thought I'd do an update how everything is doing: 

Sargent crabapples (Malus sargentii)

I'm not sure how many I got; there may have been as many as 60. A few that did not survive, but for the most part, these are doing great. I currently have about 50. Initially, I threw them into grow bags, putting them into 3-gallon nursery pots in the fall. Some of the first trees did not include enough soil. These were likely the ones that didn't survive. By the fall of last year, the growth was way out of hand, so I pruned them all severely. They grew back and as a whole are likely going to get another severe pruning in the fall. Next spring I'm planning some root pruning. That means more root cuttings.

Dwarf blueberry

These were doing very well. I decided to prune back all the growth about a month ago. A bit late in the season. The growth has not returned - it may be that I killed them. Time will tell.

Sango Kaku Japanese maple (Acer palmatum)

The Japanese maples are doing very good. I haven't done much with them, just letting them grow wild. Eventually, I want to start some air layers. 

Mugo Pine (Pinus mugo)

These guys look fantastic! Mugo pines always look great. 

Kojo-No-Mai Japanese Mt Fuji Cherry (Prunus incisa) 

I have two. One is short and thick. The other is tall and thin. I'm calling the short, thick one Pietra, meaning rock. I'll refer to the tall one Paula, cause that sorta sounds like palo. I snapped off some dead branches. Other than that, I'm leaving Paula alone for now. No root work, no top pruning. I'm just trying to make sure she's going to be okay. 

Pietra on the other hand has been worked. I root pruned and was able to get some root cuttings as well as a couple of suckers that took. In the spring, Pietra did throw out some flowers. I removed most of them, to avoid exhausting the tree with flower production. 

Japanese black Pine

Nope! None made it. The stress was too much and they've pooped out. Oh well.

Gingko Biloba

The only one that made it was the one I gifted to Aaron. The others just never woke up. 

All for now

Tuesday, June 25, 2024

End of Month Update 6/25/24

Summer's here and I'm busy. I've been doing pottery at Fairview. Wilderbee has my winter work mostly bisque fired. This is the Oregon Brown clay body. I have Lost Mountain pottery firing a few brown body pieces. I have pottery coming out my nose! I'm going to bow out of Fairview for the summer; it's just too much! I'll likely come back in the fall once things settle back down.

Regarding Bonsai: 

I've been watering and feeding heavy, trying to capitolize on the long summer days. The weeds have LOVED this! It's like I'm growing wheat, some of the weeds have reached 3 feet tall. I don't have time for weeding, but I don't like the idea of my bonsai being strangled by weeds, so I leaned into weeding Saturday night. This was after going out to the flea market. Did some more weeding on Saturday. Reconnected with my shimpaku juniper that was hidden in the weeds as well as a couple other trees. 

The vine maples are doing very well overall. A few never woke up, so those must have been duds. They seem to enjoy the high water and fertilizer. They're getting partial shade and some of the leaves are turning dark red. Seems it was a good call, getting the vine maples.

I tried some root cuttings from the vine maples.I'm not sure if  they took. I've taken root cuttings from almost everything I've encountered. Some rooting cuttings take, others just crap out. Some of my root cuttings were very haphazard, meaning they ended up getting mixed with some soil while I was trimming roots. I just threw some cuttings in a bucket with dirt and see if it works. For the most part, this isn't working. But then again, some does take. Confirmed root cuttings I have Chinese elm, kojo no mai Fuji cherry, sargent crabapple. 

All I have for now. Pictures later (maybe).

Monday, June 3, 2024

I'm not Hiding, You're Hiding! 6/4/24


Forgive me father, for it's been over a month since my last confession (blog post). Since then, I have potted up some of my fresh out of the kiln pieces and have been going out to the Pumpkin Patch. I'll start this post from there and work my way back around some pictures that I've already uploaded. Let's go.
First set of pictures are from this last weekend at the Pumpkin Patch. Almost every weekend has had drizzle or rain on Saturday. This last time I was ready for the shitty weather. I did not put out my tablecloths. I was ready to move out at a moment's notice.
This first picture has all temperate trees. Mostly crabapples, but with a mugo pine, a small trident and a Japanese maple. 

This next picture has some of my scheffleras along with a few small vine maples, a trident maple and derpy fish.

I bought this plant stand and I'm using it to add height and interest to my display. I didn't put out a log of my pottery. On the top are some assorted kusamonos.

The other display table with assorted small bonsai on top. I also displayed my dragon heads at the top. Filling out the rest of the display are some masks, raku ware, beholders, and assorted pieces. 

Final table. This one has small pottery. I'm featuring the small octopots with airplants on the main table. On top of the crate is a sea slug. On top of the other display stand are small pots, suitable for name pots. Definitely a market for small pots. 

So that's it for the Pumpkin Patch. I know I posted a few pictures of my stuff from the new studio, but I'm posting more pictures. 
Here's a pictures of a medium pot: broken egg shell with legs. It looks really nice. I haven't potted this up yet. It may end up going to my Etsy shop (eventually).

Here's another pot, same style. Haven't potted it, may go to Etsy. 

This next one I KNOW I didn't pot up. Last time I checked, it was sitting outside in my repotting tray. I was looking for a tree to marry it up with. Sometimes these things take time.

Group shot of some small juniper bonsai I have ready to go. Honestly, I'm not a big fan. But they have that typical Nike 'WOOSH' style that people seem to like. So okay.

This is more my thing. Small vine maple, wired up and potted into a broken egg with long legs pots. Really nice in person, take my word for it!

Finally I have a trident maple in broken egg with feet pot. I planted a broken concretion as a companion rock. I'm not really anxious to sell this baby. I will happily sit on this tree, as it's only going to get better with age. 

So that's it. I'm in talks with yet ANOTHER studio to see if they're willing to fire my brown clay body pieces. We'll see how that goes. 

Tuesday, April 30, 2024

End of Month Update 4/30/24

 Last update I talked about the new studio I was going to. Here are my thoughts: 

Wow! I forgot how fun it is to go to an active studio. This one's footprint is small, but they're always busy. Lots of students. Lots of studio members. They're constantly firing either bisque or glaze. If you miss a firing another will come up shortly. I mentioned they have a buff clay that I'm not a huge fan of. I also mentioned  I'm used to their glazes. 

All this means I had to put stuff out. Test the feel of the clay. See how the glaze would react with the glaze. See how the kiln itself would treat my work. The clay is a bit more plastic than I'm used to; likely because my clay has been sitting around for so long. I noticed that some of my thin pieces warped. I'll have to remember not to make them so thin. They have test tiles showing the expected outcome of combining glazes. The end results are sometimes unexpected. Overall, I'm happy with this new studio. It costs more than I'm used to. Time will tell if it's worth the extra cost. 

May 1 is opening day for the clay studio at Wilderbee. I'll drop off several strawberry boxes full of greenware this coming weekend. All of my winter's work. May 4 is the opening day for the Pumpkin Patch. My weekend is going to be busy. I have a bunch of new stuff, fresh out of the kiln. I have new bonsai. I've powered up my display tables. I've powered up my storage/transport capacity. My square card reader is online and operational. My business is online and operational.

*Checks weather report for the weekend* 

Huh. Looks like it's going to be shitty weather this weekend. Possibly rain all day Saturday. Well, if the weather's really bad, I'll just spend Saturday with the family. We'll see how it goes.     

Tuesday, April 9, 2024

Midweek Update 4/9/24


I've been going to this new studio, keeping myself busy. As a change, I've been working on frogs. Caricatures of frogs. Frog bonsai pots. There's no point in simply describing the process, so let's start with the pictures. 
This first picture is the concept of a caricature frog. Just this round thing with protruding eye balls. More of a pac-man frog:

Same Concept with this next picture, only with a tongue that sticks out and slightly more defined feet. I'm not really grooving on the feet:

Next picture is a frog shape, but more in usable small pot size. The details are lacking. I guess you'll have to wait to see the finished product:

Ah ha! A frog bonsai pot:

Moving on to more finished products, here's a broken egg bonsai pot with claws and tentacles in Plum. Honestly, this is not my favorite glaze, but it definitely has it's place: 

Sea Urchin Pot in Plum Glaze:

Crescent pot in Plum Glaze. I think it would have looked a lot better in Oregon brown clay body:

Found Semi-Cascade Crab Apple in Broken Egg Bonsai Pot Featuring Claws and Tentacles in Plum:

One has to understand that this crab apple may one day bloom. It will be a while before it does, but when it does, the plum glaze will look fantastic with the pink/white flower blossoms and the green/red of the developing fruit. The pot has a lively, youthful energy to it. 

One may say, wait, what flowers? What fruit? This is just a poor little sapling with wires. 
Where's the flowers?
Where's the fruit?
If you cannot see the fruit, you cannot see the flowers. Therefore you cannot see the little sapling. You can't even see the pot. And that's a shame as it really compliments the strange little crab apple. 
In it's own way. 

Wednesday, March 27, 2024

3/27/24 Midweek update

 I found another local pottery studio that I've signed on with. It's a bit expensive, but closer to home. Plus they have better firing schedules. They use buff white clay, which I'm not exactly a fan of. But hey, it's their studio, their rules. I'm grateful for the opportunity. It's called Fairview Lake Studio. They want all my pottery to be marked. Alright. I think I have my signature stamp somewhere. I'll use that until I create a new chop mark. 

My flea market supplies came in. Got my green apron and my spandex table covers. I think I've mentioned that I've received my airplants already.

I potted up at least one of my Fuji cherries. And at least one of my crabapples. I'll be potting up some more stuff shortly. But while looking for stuff to pot up, I 'found' a couple of crabapples! I wired them up and now we wait. 

Nothing else to note at the moment.

Monday, March 18, 2024

3/18/24 Weekend Update

It's Monday. The weekend was sunny and warm. Glorious! We're feeling a bit under the weather, so I was not able to do most of what I wanted to do. I did mow the lawn - first mow of the season! Somehow got into a mowing contest with my neighbor. I was able to work on the vine maples and some stuff for the flea market. So let's talk about that. 

Vine Maples. They finally arrived last week. I worked on half over during the week and the other half on Sunday. The roots were long, so I trimmed back the roots. I also applied some wire to give them some interesting curves. They're kind of small, so perfect time to start the wiring, I think. Even at their size, the wood is already pretty stiff. I don't think these were seedlings, per se. To me they looked more like root cuttings. I gathered all the roots I trimmed and planted them together in some dirt. Just one big mess. Probably a mistake, but I just didn't have it in me to individually pot up each root. I took the same approach to the Kojo no Mai Fuji Cherry Roots I had - I just potted them all up together. No reason why this shouldn't work. 

Stuff for the flea market - I got the 30 airplants I ordered. Dunked them in water and put them in the craft room. I ordered a green apron to wear at the flea market. And I got those spandex table covers. I'm going all in! I should also consider potting up some of my Kojo No Mai as well as the money trees I've been growing out. Come to think of it, there's a whole bunch of stuff I could be doing to get ready for the flea market.


The Dig, One Year Update

Last year, I posted about a dig (7/24/23) It's been about year, thought I'd do an update how everything is doing:  Sargent crabapple...