Tag Archive: cedarcreek missouri

It’s been a while since I’ve posted–summer watering, pruning, weeding and life in general  has got in the way. I set out to bring you an update of the Alaskan yellow cedar I styled last fall and decided to present these images too since they were shot in the same file of photos. The Bonsai Society of Portland usually shows Mother’s Day weekend, which is in May but this year there was a conflict with the Garden’s schedule and we had to settle for late April show time. It didn’t bother me at all as I was able to show some accent plants that are already  spent by the May show time. The show ran for two days and I had to rush through to get the few shots I could as we had to tear it down just minutes after I got my shots. I’ll try to get the trees and owners together as best I can…it will be a test to see who’s paying attention 😉

First up is a ponderosa pine owned by Scott Elser, which won best conifer at the National Bonsai Show in Rochester, NY, in 2010. This tree also won best conifer for the Spring Show at the Japanese Garden this year. Way to go Scott! The accent planting for the display is one of mine and won best accent plant for the show as well:

Scott's pine


A close-up of my accent planting; Calypso bulbosa:

Calypso accent


Another ponderosa pine owned by Alan Taft, standing proudly next to his creation. It has some very nice small needles for a ponderosa and was one of my favorites in the exhibit:

Alan's pine


Bird’s foot violet of mine, 24 yrs. from collection from a ditch near Cedarcreek Missouri:

Bird's Foot Violet


That little guy is in a Jim Barrett pot BTW. The next display features an Arizona alder I collected in 2004 that was just re-potted into this Michael Hagedorn pot:

Arizona alder


A Pioneer gooseberry in bloom in a Mardella Brock pot:

Pioneer gooseberry


Fawn lily; Erythronium oregonum. No blooms for the show but it flowered shortly after:

Fawn lily


How about some trees? A large California juniper from the collection of Scott Elser:

CA juniper


If you’ve ever wondered if California juniper can be grown in Portland, Scott has your answer! The little accent for this is Ocean Spray, a promising native species for us in the Northwest:

Ocean spray


Next is a Shimpaku juniper cascade from the collection of Pat Foldi:

Pat's Shimpaku


The Tokonoma was occupied by a lovely wisteria from the collection of Dennis Vojtilla:

Dennis's wisty


The azalea in the next photo is one I acquired in a trade with Michael Hagedorn. I’m not sure what type of azalea it is but I love the trunk and that it doesn’t have the ‘typical’ azalea look. The pot is an antique I purchased from Matt Reel this spring :



A little accent I scrounged up for the show–some sort of daisy. It’s potted in a special issue pot from Pauline Muth that has a basket weave pattern:

Daisy accent


A display of Scots pine from the collection of John Jaramillo with accent from the collection of Michael Hagedorn; I think they work well together:

Scots pine


A sweet little cotoneaster from Alan Taft that also won best shohin in the show:

Alan's cotoneaster


I brought this trillium in for the show–it was a bit large to serve as a believable accent for anything that wasn’t huge, so it got it’s own spot on a pedestal:



A black huckleberry I collected when I first arrived in Oregon seven years ago in a Jan Rentenaar pot; the accent is another small daisy in some grass:

Black Huckleberry


A nice large Japanese Mountain Maple from the collection of Dennis Vojtilla:

J. Maple


And last, a dwarf  Hosta I planted in an altered tuna can:

Tuna can accent


There were so many more trees than those posted here, I really had to rush through to capture the few I got here. And if it seems like there are a lot of shots of my own trees and accents, there are. It’s the best time to photograph your trees–in the setting of a show where everything is groomed and displayed on nice stands. The best way to see the show is in person though 😉

Gilding The Lilies

Pouring rain in Portland just now and decided to try another post that ties my experience as botanical model maker and the grower of the specimen plant; like my earlier post on bird’s foot violet. The subject(s) of today’s post are The White Dogtooth Violet (not a violet but a lily) Erythronium albidum, and The Oregon Trout Lily, Erythronium oreganus. I did the model of the White Dogtooth Violet around 1990 while I was living in Cedarcreek Missouri and placed it in the habitat group pictured a year or so later after re-locating to Tucson, Arizona. This lily is native to southwest Missouri and has pale lavender on the outside of its petals–quite stunning. I included  a wolf spider model as they are quite often seen in the same habitat and to add some interest. Let’s start with a shot of the habitat group first:


Another view of the habitat group:

Can you see the wolf spider front and center? How about a detail shot:

I’ve kept this piece in a glass vitrine I made especially for it and it’s looking pretty good after twenty two years. It hasn’t changed a bit as far as I can see.

If we fast forward twenty two years, I find myself living in Oregon and my focus has shifted from making replicas of wildflowers to growing actual specimens in bonsai pots for use in displaying them with trees to give a sense of the season of spring or whenever it is they’re flowering. We have a very elegant version of the White Dogtooth Violet here in the Willamette Valley–The Oregon Trout Lily, Erythronium oreganus. I potted a nice clump late last month and got some pictures of it in its peak. The flowers are not very long lasting–about a week and it was a challenge to get a shot between downpours and hail and all else the weather could throw at us 😉 This plant is called a ‘trout lily’  for the similarity of the leaf markings and those of the brown or brook trout. And without further adieu, I present the Oregon Trout Lily:

The leaf markings are very faint in the photo as this was growing in semi-shade. The markings can be quite pronounced if the plant is growing in full sun. And another shot, slightly different angle:

And a close-up of the flower in the foreground:


I apologize for the soft focus as the breeze was moving the flowers around quite a bit. Lilies have a bulb that can be six to eight inches below the ground, which I hope explains the mounded look of this planting. It would have been nearly impossible to try and reduce the rootball to fit in this shallow pot so I decided to embed it in pumice, which will retain a little moisture and keep the planting healthy and well. It required watering twice daily when first potted up but now that it has established, I’ve got that down to once a day. I’d also like to find some appropriate moss to place over the rootball as this will help retain moisture as we go into the warmer summer months. I might eventually remove it from the shallow pot and put it in a deeper pot until I want to show it again next spring as these lilies are perennial. Please feel free to leave a comment!