Bonsai in Japan

World Bonsai Convention Display at Omiya Train Station

It was thrilling to be in Japan for the World Bonsai Convention at the end of April 2017 at Saitama City/Omiya, north of Tokyo. This convention happens once every four years and draws bonsai enthusiasts from around the world. The displays are amazing! The next one will be in 2021 in Perth, Australia.

A Juniper at the train station.

Even though I was in Japan to look at bonsai, I found cherry blossoms too. Here they are on a sake barrel at a shrine in Omiya.

A gorgeous bonsai from the Imperial Household.

The multitude of bonsai was almost overwhelming.

Bonsai inspired a billboard near Shinjuku Station in Tokyo.

Kusamono Enhance Bonsai Experience

With Sandra Moore and Young Choe at National Bonsai & Penjing Museum

Kusamono artist Young Choe’s work can be enjoyed at the National Bonsai & Penjing Museum where it complements the bonsai on view, providing a seasonal accent. Sandra Moore is the author of The Peace Tree from Hiroshima, a lovely book for children about the bonsai that survived the atomic bomb. We three met up by chance at the museum on Thursday, April 13, 2017. Lucky us!

Bonsai on formal display with kusamono

Cherry Tree Wonderland

A work by photographer Dennis Kowalewski

I was delighted to meet Dennis Kowalewski recently when he and his wife brought guests from India to visit Hillwood Estate, Museum & Gardens where I an a volunteer greeter and garden docent. This photo really “spoke” to me because I treasure the poignant moment it captures, when the cherry blossom petals start to fall though the trees are still in bloom.

Bonsai Presentation at the Association of Oldest Inhabitants

Bonsai Authors with Bill Brown (far right) of DC’s Association of Oldest Inhabitants

Delighted to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day with a “trio” bonsai presentation with fellow authors Stephen Voss and Sandra Moore at a luncheon meeting of the Association of Oldest Inhabitants of the District of Columbia! Our next joint public presentation will be at the Library of Congress in the Madison Building on April 11, 2017 at 11:30 am.

Cherry Blossom Update

Both of my cherry blossom books are on sale at the National Gallery of Art!

Another of my cherry blossom books on display!

Snow today in our nation’s capital and cold temperatures in the forecast could imperil the cherry blossoms this year, though the trees themselves should be okay. Check out this interview with Adrian Higgins, the Washington Post’s gardening expert:
While they’re a poor second compared to the real trees and flowers, my cherry blossom books will give you some idea of how beautiful the cherry blossoms’ peak blooming can be.

DC’s Cherry Blossoms Expected to Bloom Early!

Washington’s famous cherry blossoms are expected to reach their peak mid-March this year. Look for me at the Eastern National sales tent by the Tidal Basin near the paddle boat dock on Wednesday, March 15 from 1 to 3. I will post additional dates closer to the time. See you there!

Cherry Blossoms at their peak in 2015.

Fabulous Review in The Japanese Garden Society’s “Shakkei”

Bonsai and Penjing, Ambassadors of Peace & Beauty Receives Rave Review!

Here’s an excerpt from the review found in the Japanese Garden Society’s quarterly newsletter, Shakkei (Winter 2016-17 issue):
“I thnk it is fair to say that all of the books I have that have been published by Tuttle are of excellent quality. However, just occasionally one finds one that is so good it ‘fair takes one’s breath away’: this book, I’m delighted to report, is one of those. . .the illustrations are excellent. That said, althought they are some of the best I have seen, they have to take second place to the text – which is superb. Throughout the book are sections headed ‘Spotlight on . . .’ covering specific individuals whose efforts have made the collection what it is today. Individuals so covered include Dr John Creech; Saburo Kato; Dr Yee-Sun Wu; John Naka; and Harry Hirao. I’d be tempted to add a ‘Spotlight’ on Ann McClellan for being the author of such a magnificent book. Do buy it – it will not disappoint!” — Shakkei, the Journal of the Japanese Garden Society.

Book Events Begin for 2017!

The Library of Congress, Washington, DC

The Library of Congress, Washington, DC

Mark your calendars! The first public bonsai book talk of 2017 with Sandra Moore and Stephen Voss will be on Tuesday, April 11th at 11:30 at the Madison Building of the Library of Congress in Washington, DC! Here’s a link to the Library’s press release:

On Saturday, February 25th, I will be participating in the Celebration of Writers at Howard University from 11 am to 2 pm. You can meet me and other DC-area authors in the University’s Blackburn Center.

See you soon!

Last Two Bonsai Book Events of 2016!

Join Stephen Voss, Sandra Moore and me on Thursday, December 8 at 7pm at the Tenley Public Library in Washington DC for a bonsai talk or come to Roscoe’s Neapolitan Pizzeria in Takoma Park between 2:30 and 5 on Sunday, December 11 where we’ll be participating in the Takoma Park Book Fair. If you don’t catch us then, watch this space for events in 2017 — there are lots already on the books!

Next presentation at Tenley Public Library with Sandy Moore and Stephen Voss!

Next presentation with Sandy Moore and Stephen Voss!

Wonderful to see everyone who came to the National Press Club Authors’ Night where I was thrilled to share a table with Scott Farris and his book, Inga, Kennedy’s Great Love, Hitler’s Perfect Beauty and J. Edgar Hoover’s Prime Suspect. Check it out!

Next up for Bonsai and Penjing, a joint presentation with Sandy Moore and Stephen Voss at the Tenley Public Library on December 8 at 7 pm. See you there!