Aloha & welcome to the 2nd issue of our second year as we build a national and international Tropical & True Indoor Bonsai Community!
Mid-Pacific Bonsai Foundation


Journal Editor
President, Fuku-Bonsai Inc.
(Kurtistown, Hawaii)


Journal Contributing Editors
Author, bonsai instructor
and Ficus (Fig) authority
(Whitefish, Montana)
Leader of Study Groups
(Waipahu, Oahu, Hawaii)
"In & Out" specialist
(Farmington Hills, Michigan)


Journal Contributing Writers
(Bozeman, Montana)
(Polson, Montana)
(Long Beach, California)
(Pleasant View, Utah)
(Virginia / Bahrain)
(Brooklyn, New York)
(Phoenix, Arizona)
(Kalispell, Montana)
(Apex, North Carolina)


YOU ARE INVITED TO JOIN THE 2014 BEGINNER STUDY GROUP! Click this link for more information.


President, Mid-Pacific Bonsai Foundation
            Aloha to the members of the Mid-Pacific Bonsai Foundation and readers of the Journal of Tropical and True Indoor Bonsai.  It's already time to issue the February issue!  Boy, does time fly and I'm a month late in welcoming you to the second year of publishing the Journal!  Besides being hectic here, my other excuses are that I've been out a bit and working like crazy to improve the center and exhibits.
           Last year was really a banner year for us!  We emerge from a 25-year long battle for survival and,  with increasing confidence, we are rebuilding to a higher standard. The road to Fuku-Bonsai is now a beautiful wide avenue and visitors no longer park a half mile away because they fear their rental cars will get stuck in the deep pot holes!  In the past year we've rebuilt all of the signage that guide visitors to the center. 
            New display benches are being built to last and include a coated metal covering that protects the heavy wood frame from rotting and weather-proof materials under each leg to lift the display benches off the often wet ground. Some large specimen display stands have built-in turntables to allow turning to view all sides. Some old nursery benches with roof iron surfaces lasted over 30 years.  The new design that includes non-rusting aluminum bench panels are expected to last over 50 years!
            The Foundation plays a very quiet behind the scenes role but is increasingly involved in the center operations and strategic plans.  Nursery production and marketing is increasing.  The Foundation activities expand right along side as we provide the support that makes many of the Journal articles possible.  So it is very humbling, gratifying and exciting to receive new memberships,  renewals, and generous donations that make it possible for us to assist with a growing list of projects with larger scale projects joining the list.
             It's wonderful that more members are visiting, taking workshops, and joining the Beginner and Fast-Track Study Groups. In appreciation, we are developing some very high-value products that will be available only to them. Vice-president Edison Yadao enjoys conducting the workshops and I get to do a few, too.  On behalf of the officers and staff, I send New Years greetings and request your continuing support!
           ~~~ Michael S. Imaino, MPBF president
             Fuku-Bonsai and Mid-Pacific Bonsai Foundation has partnered to co-sponsor the Fuku-Bonsai Cultural Center and Hawaii State Bonsai Repository, the website, and the Journal of Tropical & True Indoor Bonsai. As such it is the first large scale national resource of an extensive amount of information,  as a supplier of high-potential True Indoor Bonsai plants and supplies, and a source of personalized assistance for members and customers.  We are focused on building the capabilities to be able to supply and support the Tropical and True Indoor Bonsai community now and for future generations!  Please join us!
            The Journal editorial team has come up with an exceptional issue that covers a full range of subjects!   As the readership and study group enlarges,  the senior members are offering to assist new members of the Beginner Study Group and as they graduate, they're invited to be a part of the active Fast-Track Study Group who are individually taking on more complex challenges while helping each other. There are more Fuku-Bonsai articles than usual in this issue.  That's because several articles were written specifically to provide various members of the study group with information that may be needed in their projects and these are being shared with all of the readers of the Journal.     
           ~~~David,  Journal editor  (
    For orders placed and paid for in the month of February to be shipped as weather allows! Go to for more information about Custom Collection and contact to confirm availability.
             MY ROOT-OVER-ROCK ADVENTURES - PART I     By Jerry Meislik, Journal contributing editor (Whitefish, Montana).  This is the first article on ROR (root-over-rock) creation.  I start with Brassaia and Dwarf Schefflera. Both grow as epiphytes and show extreme durability and aggressive roots systems that easily tolerate being grown over rocks.  
           AN INTRODUCTION TO 360° COMPLEX LANDSCAPES    By Ryan Chang, Journal contributing editor (Waipahu, Hawaii)  The Fast-Track Study Group is moving into rock sculpturing and 360° landscape designs. I've done a few practice smaller versions, but this is the first decent sized 360° landscape that I’m doing on my own.
          THE ROCK ISSUE   By Jay Boryczko, Journal contributing editor (Farmington Hills, Michigan)   Skills that one acquires in workshop I also apply to workshop II however, with a twist. That twist is taking left-over pieces from rock carvings and assembling them with your tree(s) to create larger scenes that are more interesting.
           UPDATE:  HAWAIIAN SPINNING PORPOISE!  The tree was created as a tropical version of that famous Simpaku Juniper in Japan named "Dragon Flying Through the Clouds" which is about the same size as our version which is just 31 years old but already impressive and in need of a display pot.
          A RADICAL HAWAIIAN DRAGON LESSON!  One of Fuku-Bonsai's oldest Dwarf Schefflera Hawaiian Dragons was originally a natural epiphyte growing out of a tree. When collected it had long roots that reached the ground and the roots were formed into an exciting pattern. The tree was collected about 2000 with a then estimated age of about 10 years old. So the bonsai is about 24 years old and in training about 14 years.
         AN UPDATE ON MICHAEL'S TREE - PART VI   Michael's Port Jackson Fig (Ficus rubiginosa) was started from seed in 1983, the same year that Michael joined Fuku-Bonsai. It's been the subject of several classes as we trained our staff
          LESSON #14:  BASIC ROOT-OVER-ROCK!   Fuku-Bonsai's Hawaiian Lava Plantings are ideal gift bonsai for anyone, anywhere who can grow houseplants. They have both good and bad features. the plants grow very slowly.  If you want to learn to train and develop bonsai you would have better results by learning and training ROOT-OVER-ROCK bonsai in which the roots grow into media in a pot. This is a lesson of the basic principles of ROOT-OVER-ROCK.

         LESSON #15: MULTI-ROCK POTLESS ARRANGEMENT!  This idea began to show that two rocks can be held together at the base with concrete so you could plant a bonsai between them and the arrangement could look like it's a single rock with a tree on it (even though it's really between the two rocks). Here's how it was done.

           HYPERTUFA; A PRELIMINARY REPORT  By George McLean, Journal contributing writer (Kalispell, Montana)  Like concrete, hypertufa uses Portland cement as one of its ingredients. But the other two are not sand and gravel but peat moss and Perlite (or vermiculite).
          AN ALMOST ONE YEAR UPDATE   By Russ Mann, Journal contributing writer (Polson, Montana)     Now I start my Record of Personal Bonsai, MY BONSAI! I am committed to doing this right, in the correct way, with true bonsai spirit, with the Spirit of Aloha! I read many articles on the Fuku-Bonsai website, then called and spoke with David Fukumoto. He suggested I start with the “workshop 1”, so I did . . .
         A FAMILY CHRISTMAS WORKSHOP!   By Carole Tingley, Journal contributing writer (Apex, North Carolina)   I was expecting a house full of guests over the Christmas holidays. For a fun activity, I decided to do a bonsai family workshop to let all the participants prepare their first bonsai. I was ordering some plants for myself, so I included in my order a set of eight introductory workshop packages to share with my guests. The shipment arrived about two weeks ahead of time to make sure it didn’t get caught in a winter weather delay.
          MY SECOND IWP ROOTS-DRAGON!   By Ora Scott (Near Huntsville in northern Alabama)  Bonsai is a new adventure for me. I travel quite a bit for work, so I have a challenge ahead of me to determine how best to care for the plants that come with us in the motorhome, as well as those that will be left behind at the house.  My job is as an engineer, so I am likely to over analyze my bonsai.

          OUR FIRST IWP & PIWP! By Neill & Fely Sams (Kapaa, Kauai, Hawaii) On January 19, 2014 we hosted the Sams who were on the Big Island to participate in nursery organizational activities. A previous meeting indicated a very compatible win-win situation was possible. The Sams own and operate Orchid Alley Kauai and are also growers, niche marketers, shippers, and love to teach. They are interested in making bonsai a major second product line!



        MAILBAG & FEBRUARY 2014 MONTH-LONG SPECIAL CUSTOM COLLECTION SALE!   Custom Collection is the cream of our crop --- our largest, oldest, and best value products including some in training since the 1970's! The photo at left is one of our best plants that recently sold. There are others to choose from with more information at  Our mailbag features an older customer tree that we're assisting in training.