Mohawk Hudson Bonsai Society

Dedicated to the art of bonsai

Archive for Potting

Mark Comstock: Bonsai Repotting

ComstockOn March 31, bonsai expert Mark Comstock will help MHBS club members repot trees. Mark says to bring plenty of trees and learn the best way to repot and transplant safely. The day starts early at 7 AM. “I will repot from 7 to 10,” says Mark. Then comes a demo and more repotting of club member trees until 5 PM.

Mark will also demo nursery container trees into pre-bonsai configuration, demo a finished tree, and go over soil sizes, watering practices and bacteria/fungal issues.

Bring trees that need transplanting this spring, plus your tools and soil, or just come to observe. Soil will also be available for purchase. And don’t forget to bring some food to share at our usual pot luck lunch. The timing is great for spring repotting. Please email Pauline to register for this FREE-to-members event.

Mark is starting early, but you needn’t come at 7 AM. If you are interested in coming that early, just let Pauline know when you register.

Upcoming MHBS events


Ted Matson styles a Black Pine.

Some great events are coming up at MHBS, below are a few highlights. Guests are welcome at club meetings so if you’re not a member, these are great opportunities to see what our club is all about. For more information or to sign up for a workshop, get in touch.

March 24 – Poo Balls
Poo Balls are a natural, slow release fertilizer for containerized trees and plants. We make our own at this workshop. Messy but fun and no actual poo is used. We’ll also be repotting trees.

May 12 – Ted Matson Workshop
A bonsai instructor for 25 years, Ted Matson is an award-winning bonsai master. We are lucky to have him for this morning lecture and demonstration, followed by an afternoon workshop by reservation where he’ll help us style selected material.

June 30 – John Romano Workshop
John Romano learned Bonsai from masters including Kenji Miyata at New England Bonsai Gardens and Nobuichi Urushibata at Taisho en in Shizuoka, Japan. This is a great opportunity to work with a master. Workshop by reservation.

August 25 – Rock Collecting
Find your own slabs and rocks at a great secret club location. It’s a stream bed so bring your boots.

Sept. 12-15 – ABS Learning seminars
Our most exciting club event of the year. MHBS is the local host club for the national American Bonsai Society event, which will be held this year in Saratoga Springs, New York. Sign up for classes or just come and browse. If you are curious about bonsai, you will not want to miss this rare opportunity to see national level bonsai tree displays, shop vendors, or learn from bonsai’s top masters. Learn more at For the Love of Bonsai.

Muck Recipes

Yuck, muck.

Oh boy! Bonsai enthusiasts love muck recipes, so here are a couple more, shared with permission from Florida’s Lakeland Bonsai Society.

If you’re not familiar, muck is used in slab and stone plantings where stronger support is needed, such as vertical swells or edging. It’s a self-adhering clay, like mud, that solidifies some after drying. A good muck is permeable enough for water and roots to penetrate, but solid enough for firm support. Read the rest of this entry »

Tropical Bonsai Repotting and Annual Poo Ball Workshop

Join us January 29 at the Voorheesville Cooperative Extension for some good, clean fun!

Remember it’s springtime indoors and one of the two times it is good to repot your tropicals. Bring your tropicals and potting materials. If you need soil, call or email Pauline Muth. You may also just learn about repotting and do it at home.

Plus, who needs snowballs when we can make poo balls? Come and work with Bill Jones to make your fertilizer balls for this spring. No poo ball fights please.

12 Noon Social and BYO Lunch, 1:00 PM meeting and program.

Preview of 2012 programs

Suggestions for next year’s programs are being solicited from membership. The following list was compiled from suggestions taken at the fall show and September club meeting. Keep the ideas coming.

Suggested Topics:

  • Displaying your bonsai
  • Fertilizer Cakes
  • Repotting
  • Tropical workshop/repotting
  • Wiring
  • Kusamono Pots with Adriano
  • Field Trip to Nick Lenz’s place

Possible Speakers:

  • Suthin
  • Ted Matson
  • Michele Phaneuf
  • David Easterbrook
  • Jim Doyle