Bonsai Empire Celebrates 15 Years Online

empire150Here is something fun and educational for all bonsai enthusiasts. Bonsai Empire is celebrating their 15th year online with a unique Ask The Expert event. You have the opportunity to ask any question and even provide photographs about your bonsai related subject. The world-wide panels of experts will answer questions. The deadline is November 30th, so don’t put this off! For complete details, visit Bonsai Empire at Bonsai Empire will then select one question per expert and publish their answers throughout December.

Frank Mihalek’s Sterling Silver Bonsai Pendant Workshop

150_Image2512015 GSBF Convention 38 in Riverside, California

Frank Mihalek is a second-generation bonsai artist following his father, Tony Mihalek. Frank specialized in rock and forest styles of bonsai, called Saikei. He also specializes in single tree bonsai. Frank is the author of many educational books, CDs and online magazine for bonsai beginners, including kids. His work with bonsai has been recognized through competition and awards in Japan, South Korea, Italy, and the U.S. He was elected to the boards of American Bonsai Society and Bonsai Clubs International. In 2008, Frank started to carve Bonsai Jewelry out of gold, silver, and pewter. Later, he started to cast bronze bonsai sculptures. In 2010, he took lessons in Tore Del Creco, Italy, for carving cameos out of sea shells.


Most of the Recent Stolen Bonsai Recovered

GSBF_sq_stamp—Dolores and Kurt Rauh

What a long tortuous tale!  Paul Holtzen posted my original list and tale of anguish on Facebook, something called Readit(?).  And on Tuesday he got a call from a shop owner in Sacramento who thought he might have some of my trees.  He had purchased them from a white male in his 50’s or 60’s, balding, in a white Chevy pickup, with his wife.  The story was they were from an estate sale.  Paul went there after work to see if they were indeed mine.  He knew my trees and convinced the man to give them to him.  The man did not want to sell stolen merchandise, so agreed and Paul took them home and I went to Paul’s store on Wednesday morning and picked them up.  On the way home we checked the Buddhist church as the person selling them said he was going there next to try to sell the rest. No luck.  We also went to 3 florists in same area, where I left my name and phone number.  (more…)

Alert: Stolen Bonsai November 13th-15th, 2015

GSBF_sq_stampFrom Sacramento, California Area

  • Seriyu Japanese Maple – young, about 14 inches tall – pot broken off during robbery
  • Japanese Maple Dancing Peacock Large 30 inches tall, shallow pot broken during robbery – very large, wide nebari, large branches broken during robbery
  • Japanese Maple grove (5 trees grown together at base, very old) 24 + inches tall, oval mica pot rolled edge inward, at least 24 inches +, 12 inches wide.
  • Eastern White Pine 18 inches plus tall, probably that wide, round plastic training pot
  • Japanese Green Maple, grafted 18 inches tall, grafted branches and roots, 25 years old plus
  • Japanese Green Maple, yellow fall color 18-20 inches tall
  • Japanese Maple “Butterfly” Seedling from Tosh Subamaru, grafted lower branch, top removed, stub dead, not yet removed.  large nebari, very curved trunk, 20 plus yrs. old
  • Japanese Green Maple from Lotus Bonsai, shohin, very curvey, 7 inches tall plastic round training pot
  • Japanese Maple “Bonfire” side grafted lower branch, 18-20 inches tall  10+ years old
  • Azalea “Nikko” from Tomiyama collection,  Old, medium size in round training pot
  • Azalea “Minato”  30″ tall, oval cream pot, showing some bloom
  • Azalea “Kinsai”  Midsize, round plastic training pot showing some bloom
  • Shimpaku Juniper, shohin, double trunk, round plastic training pot
  • Am also missing a Crabapple off bench, looking for card!

Since they came back a second time, there is also missing:
two collected juniper, 1 California, 1 Sierra (from Bob Shimon)
a Sango Kaku Maple (3ft tall with heavy scaring mid trunk),and several more large Azaleas (incl. Hinotsukasa 3 ft tall 1988, a Hanazono  2ft with a large trunk).
Also taken were other smaller Maples, azaleas, etc.).

Cautionary Information: From now on, all plants will be photographed and catalogued.  I highly recommend this for all Bonsai people!  Also, be aware that unless items are stole from inside your home – NOT YARD – some police departments (Sacramento County, for instance) will only take a report over the phone and “work on it” later)

Dolores and Kurt Rauh, owners

Contact email

GSBF 2015 Convention 38 Awards Banquet

150_Image266Riverside Convention Center October 31, 2015. Every year at the convention awards banquet, Golden State Bonsai Federation (GSBF) takes the honor to recognize and award special individuals who stand out in the organization and bonsai community at large for their dedication and achievements in educating and promoting the living art form of bonsai. The GSBF 2015 Convention 38 Awards Banquet was no exception with recognizing the following dedicated individuals for their extraordinary achievements. Some of the winners appear in photographs below. (more…)

2015 GSBF Club Best Website and Newsletter Contests

GSBF_sq_stampEvery year Golden State Bonsai Federation (GSBF) Golden Statements (GS) Magazine hosts the best club website and club newsletter contests. It is an opportunity to judge club websites and newsletters for their quality, communications of club activities and information, and creativity of the webmasters and editors throughout GSBF. The club webmasters and editors are the true hubs of communications, which report to their respective club memberships. In judging websites and newsletters, the judges look for these best qualities and creative ways of reporting what a club does in educating and promoting the fine art of bonsai. GS selects quality prizes to reward the winning webmasters and editors for their hard and timely work. On October 31, 2015, at GSBF Convention 38 in Riverside, California, GS Editor Rich Guillen and Interim Website Liaison George Haas awarded the winners official certificates and framed under glass Japanese Wood Block Painting Prints for best websites and newsletters. (more…)

A Special Tribute to Harry Hirao “Mr. California Juniper”

150_Image259The 2015 Golden State Bonsai Federation (GSBF) Convention 38 created a special tribute to the late Harry Hirao, referred to as “Mr. California Juniper” for his efforts at collecting the California native species juniper and styling them into creative and wonderful living art forms of bonsai. The Convention 38 was held at the convention center in Riverside, California from October 29 through November 1, 2015. (more…)

15th Annual Show Capital City Bonsai Association

On October 24 & 25, 2015, The Capital City Bonsai Association (CCBA) held their 15th annual show in support of the Golden State Bonsai Federation (GSBF) Bonsai Garden at Lake Merritt and Sacramento bonsai clubs. CCBA is comprised of four Sacramento based bonsai clubs: American Bonsai Association, Sacramento, Bonsai Sekiyu Kai, Sacramento Bonsai Club, and Satsuki Aikokai of Sacramento. The show was located at the Shepard Garden Center, McKinley Park, in Sacramento, California. Hours were 10 am to 5 pm on Saturday, and 10 am to 4 pm on Sunday. Volunteer artists from the four clubs rotate the demonstrations on both days at 1:30 pm with benefit drawings. There were vendor and club sales throughout the show. (more…)

54th Annual Fall Show East Bay Bonsai Society

150_Image288The East Bay Bonsai Society (EBBS) held their 54th annual fall show at the Garden Center, Lake Merritt, in Oakland, California on 10 and 11 October 2015. Hours were 10 am to 5 pm on Saturday, and 10 am to 4 pm on Sunday. Ryan Nichols, a bonsai professional, conducted a demonstration on Sunday afternoon. Trees, pots and other bonsai related items were for sale on both days. Free admission.


Grand Opening GSBF Clark Bonsai Collection in Shinzen Garden

ribbonWoodward Park, Fresno, California

October 17th was a beautiful day in Fresno. The Clark Bonsai Collection which has been gifted to the Golden State Bonsai Federation had completed its process of relocation from Hanford into the Shinzen Garden. Bob Hilvers and his crew of “Second Hand Lions” have done a magnificent job of building a peaceful stroll garden complete with a compliment of world class bonsai. (more…)