ENTERING A NEW BONSAI ERA!
ALOHA! The events of September 11, 2001 will change our lives as much as the December 7, 1941 attack on Pearl Harbor. I was less than two years old but still recall a falling anti-aircraft round blowing up the house across the street. As Hawaii mobilized for war, Americans of Japanese Ancestry volunteered and proved their loyalty in World War II by their heroism and by shedding rivers of blood.
In Japan, Saburo Kato also suffered but after the war, he gained the support and friendship of Haruo "Papa" Kaneshiro, Ted Tsukiyama, and the Hawaiian bonsai community and we became staunch allies towards building bonsai as a bridge to international friendship and peace. Hong Kong's Yee-sun Wu made an impressive individual effort to introduce Chinese penjing. John Naka became an international bonsai teacher and ambassador. It was a special unselfish, generation.
Recently, Ted T. Tsukiyama was presented the Order of the Rising Sun with Silver Rays, a Japanese government imperial decoration for his efforts to build goodwill between Japan and the United States, to establish the World Bonsai Friendship Federation, and to improve the Japanese-American community. He was filled with emotion as he received the award from his former enemy and it strengthened his conviction that bonsai truly can be a vehicle for friendships and peace.
Tsukiyama, Kaneshiro, Wu, Naka and Kato are the five who most influenced me. Papa passed away and Tsukiyama, Wu, Naka, and Kato are passing the torch. Fuku-Bonsai was created to become a perpetual vehicle to host the Hawaii State Bonsai Repository and to support their mission. As we emerge as a leader for the next generation, there are some very promising American bonsai leaders on the horizon.
|DONNA BANTING, editor of BCI's Bonsai Magazine, succeeded Jean Smith as Bonsai Clubs International became a truly international organization. These two ladies provided balanced reporting of the achievements of the master technicians, introduced lesser known bonsai regions and traditions, and reported on the emerging world of international bonsai. In support, we submitted numerous articles that have been published with the latest titled: "Plunging Penjing!" in the September-October 2001 issue. Another major article is being completed for submittal soon. Find out more by visiting www.bonsai-bci.com|
|FELIX LAUGHLIN, the president of National Bonsai Foundation, will be succeeding Saburo Kato as the chairman of the World Bonsai Friendship Federation and John Naka as president of the North American Bonsai Federation. He has the awesome challenge of providing the leadership to refine the workings of an international and a regional bonsai organizations and to host the World Bonsai Convention to be held in Washington, D.C. four years from now. National Bonsai Foundation has translated and published Saburo Kato's Forest, Rock Planting & Ezo Spruce Bonsai book that was initially published in Japanese in 1963. I highly recommended it as a gift for any bonsai lover.|
ANDY RUTLEDGE is merging bonsai magazine publishing with Internet technology.
He's committed, highly competent, and encourages bonsai professionals to share their
knowledge as we build an international infrastructure to support greater bonsai interest.
His first two issues were impressive, especially his straight-forward editorial positions.
Andy advocates a pursuit of excellence while also celebrating the quiet values of bonsai
as art, craft and hobby. He encourages all forms of bonsai and this is the type of person
that must be supported! I will write a "Fuku-Bonsai Corner" quarterly
column beginning with the next issue scheduled to go online on October 15, 2001. The
Bonsai Enthusiast - Online Journal is currently free and posted at www.bonsaienthusiast.com
The Internet allows sharing information at a very low cost. But to produce outstanding content, appropriate photographs or sketches, and to put together a highly readable package, it is still costly in terms of time, commitment, and expertise. There is a solid fit between Andy's efforts and philosophy and Fuku-Bonsai's.
||MICHAEL IMAINO is emerging as a bonsai master in his own right. He has been with Fuku-Bonsai since 1983 and has acquired and accumulated diverse talents in construction and carpentry, project and personnel management, nursery production, and training and maintaining bonsai. Michael is the senior plant manager, Fuku-Bonsai director, bonsai collection curator, and president of the non-profit IRS tax-exempt Mid-Pacific Bonsai Foundation. He's handling more authority and responsibility and is training choice stock that will one day go into the exhibit collection.|
FUKUBONSAI.COM is enroute to becoming the most comprehensive tropical
bonsai and True Indoor Bonsai website. The site summary shows that there are
137 titles that would print out to over 250 pages! The website is a work in progress and
educational material will be continually added. Only about 15 titles have not been
modified in the past three months! New material is being buried in the enlarging
website and this newsletter will provide a linked listing of new material and timely
editorial commentary on bonsai matters. For this premier issue, we summarize and point out
major additions or changes as a detailed linked listing will include most of the
Fuku-Bonsai home page.
SECTION I. TRUE INDOOR BONSAI MAIL-ORDER. Mail-order items are at the start of the website, we supply wholesale quantities and accept credit cards via PayPal. Our current Gift List & Price Sheet. The most significant educational article is titled: Successful Bonsai Training. To get an idea of how well Fuku-Bonsai has recovered, view some of our oldest plants and the new turntable container and display tray in Custom Collection.
SECTION II: ABOUT FUKU-BONSAI & "FUKU-BONSAI.COM". The photo tour has drawn compliments. In May 2001 we issued a press release about our new workshop package and a month later, a highly complimentary Honolulu Advertiser article was published.
SECTION III: AN EVOLUTION TO TRUE INDOOR BONSAI. Much of the world believes "bonsai" are only outdoor temperate climate trees in the Japanese manner. Four articles beginning with Aristocratic Chinese Penjing introduced a totally new concept. As we begin a major educational and publishing phase, we introduced Fuku-Daruma & the Fuku-Bonsai Dream!
SECTION IV: TRAINING TRUE INDOOR BONSAI. This section completes our specialty area and produces the most email activity as Fuku-Bonsai Study Group assists customers.
SECTION V: THE BASICS OF BONSAI (& Section VII: More Bonsai Stories). These two sections will be a compendium relating to the world of bonsai and an archives for my bonsai magazine articles. Several articles each about Saburo Kato and Haruo "Papa" Kaneshiro were added recently. The Fuku-Bonsai Collection is amongst the most innovative and most varied in the world and there are many more stories and photos to come!
SECTION VI: LEARNING FROM NATURE. By photographing and sharing the lessons of the tropics, bonsai growers will be able to better understand and create superior tropical bonsai. We're establishing the structural basis for Tropical Bonsai as temperate climate growers discover the easier and faster growth of tropical trees!
SECTION VIII: THE BIG ISLAND OF HAWAII! I invite you to visit us in Kurtistown and find out why the Big Island of Hawaii is considered the last great Hawaiian Paradise!
||NEW "KEIKI BONSAI" PRODUCT LINE:
In October 2000 after 38 years of trials, we neared our goal of developing an easy
successful way to learn and understand True Indoor Bonsai for anyone who can grow
houseplants! The Fuku-Bonsai
Workshops are popular with visitors and The
Secret of Fuku-Bonsai's High-Success Workshops shares the reasons for success.
We're excited about the Keiki Bonsai Workshop Package being used as part of Angela Tillman's art classes at Silk Hope Elementary in Siler City, North Carolina. Sixty packages were shipped the day before the World Trade Center and Pentagon tragedies; and although the two large cartons sat for four days in Los Angeles, they arrived with only minor damage. The start of this project began in June and you can see it at Angela's Workshop. You'll be able to see the class results posted there in the weeks and months ahead.
We've begun to put together a revised 2nd edition Keiki Bonsai Handbook and a Teacher's Manual. The key proprietary item is the PREMIUM KEIKI BONSAI STOCK and this will be available as a separate item in large quantities in the future. Please request more information if you're interested in participating in taking or teaching workshops. We're targeting an achievable 10-year old success level (and a no-stress adult experience)!
NEWSLETTER FEEDBACK IS VALUABLE!
In 1973, Fuku-Bonsai began publishing mail-order catalogs with original articles and these introduced many to the art of growing True Indoor Bonsai. The comments, recommendations, and questions were extremely helpful as we pioneered this new field. In the 70's and 80's with our production mostly sold out on a continuing basis, we continually culled our mailing list to recent customers in an effort to limit distribution to only 1,500 copies annually.
The Internet allows us to dramatically increase the number of newsletter subscribers at very little cost. It's an exciting new business vehicle and great for assisting our customers. However, it promises to sell out our production and limit the number of wholesale accounts that we can supply on a long-term basis. While I can't help temperate climate outdoor bonsai growers, I can and will assist customers to successfully grow our True Indoor Bonsai and tropical bonsai. Our older customers are comfortable with our standards, values, and service and as we begin expansion, our challenge is to maintain those standards.
A photo summary of the August Bonsai Day is at Restoring Peace Forest. The photo summary of the September Bonsai Day is at Banyan Epiphytic Bonsai. We're now training the third generation of Fuku-Bonsai masters and we worked on the plant shown in Professional Training Techniques on October 13. Newest photos will be posted in the coming weeks. If you plan to visit Hawaii, please consider joining us on a Bonsai Day (on the second Saturday of each month) which is sponsored by the non-profit IRS tax-exempt Mid-Pacific Bonsai Foundation.
TRUE INDOOR BONSAI VS. TROPICAL BONSAI
Each year the relatively small number that grew only traditional Japanese temperate climate bonsai are understanding more about Chinese penjing and many are growing Tropical Bonsai. Unfortunately, most people still don't know the difference between Tropical Bonsai and "Indoor Bonsai." Most Tropical Bonsai must be grown outdoors in bright light and brought indoors for protection whenever night temperatures fall below 50°F.
Unfortunately, many bonsai sellers, through ignorance or intentionally, are perpetuating misrepresentation and listing any and all Tropical Bonsai as "Indoor Bonsai." It's a misleading, self-serving, and unethical practice! Very few Tropical Bonsai can grow indoors in average home and office environments on a year around basis. ALL TROPICAL BONSAI ARE NOT HOUSEPLANT BONSAI! To differentiate we trademarked "True Indoor Bonsai." With education, bonsai fraud and misrepresentation will decrease, bonsai success will increase, and there will be a larger enjoyment of this wonderful world of bonsai!
In the midst of these dark times, we are also entering a new bonsai era with the hope that bonsai shall be a candle for peace and a symbol of friendship. From our earliest days, I've pursued all aspects of bonsai as a personal challenge. Fuku-Bonsai is dedicated to creating the most successful form of bonsai for everyone. We specialize in researching and training houseplant bonsai and ur TRUE INDOOR BONSAI are now the most successful gift bonsai for anyone who can grow houseplants.
Bonsai can be impossibly complex and difficult. Our research and trials focused on creating high-success workshops to introduce even children to a wonderful hobby that creates a knowledge and appreciation of the beauty and wonder of nature. It teaches discipline, compassion, and builds the ability to nurture and take responsibility. It can lead to a gentle serene way of life even amidst a greedy and violent world. While a gift of bonsai can allow a person to enter a world of personal peace, learning bonsai can amplify all of the aspects and benefits of bonsai. After almost 40 years, I can proudly recommend the PREMIUM KEIKI BONSAI WORKSHOP PACKAGE!
With the recovery of the nursery, my role will change as I devote more of my time to moving Fuku-Bonsai toward being a product development and marketing company. I'm delighted to now have more time to write and photograph. While I'm still am the sole webmaster and Internet order processor, I'll one day turn over these responsibilities and focus on research and development.
Please help me spread the word that Fuku-Bonsai is now alive and well. Fuku-Bonsai's recovery is becoming more known and New York Times writer and photographer teams have visited us for an article to be published on November 19. Encourage friends and family who are interested in True Indoor Bonsai or Tropical Bonsai to become members of our newsletter family. We're re-entering the marketplace after a ten-year absence and continue our legal battle to collect damages from DuPont.
We were fortunate to survive and I thank our stockholders, officers and directors, associates, and especially our loyal friends and customers for their support and assistance. We are committed and growing for the future!
*** Go to Fuku-Bonsai Home Page *** Go to FBnews Issue #2
FBnews is a free periodic newsletter for the members of the Fuku-Bonsai Study Group and the friends and customers of the Fuku-Bonsai Cultural Center & Hawaii State Bonsai Repository. It includes current sales and articles of interest to those growing True Indoor Bonsai or any other form of artistic pot plant. To receive email notification of new issues, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org with your name, city and state. There is no fee, but donations to the non-profit Mid-Pacific Bonsai Foundation are gratefully accepted.