trim

Gave my bonsai a minor haircut

品品のクラスで、ぼくが作ったカエデの盆栽を剪定しました。元気そうです。そして、苔の花が咲いています。秋の準備ができています。

I gave a minor trim to the kaede maple bonsai I made at Sinajina. It looks healthy. And the moss is even blooming. It’s now ready for fall.

Night view and fallen petals conclude cherry blossom season

花見の季節は終わり、最後の夜の花びらの写真です。

I love this multi-petal and super-pink cherry tree growing outside my apartment building. At night, it is magical against the clouds and electric power lines. I like that the tree has been trimmed into a lollipop shape. The sight of the petals pooling up in the gutter is also strangely captivating: so pink and so transient.

Fortunately, once cherry trees have finished blooming, there is a burst of spring flowers: azalea, dogwood, lilac, iris, jasmine, and soon roses.

Making bonsai pots at Shiho

史火の教室で盆栽用の植木鉢を作っています。

In the aftermath of the tsunami and nuclear crisis, it seems many have retreated into their homes and offices. Now more than ever is the time to go outside, interact with neighbors, and support your local small businesses in Tokyo: restaurants, vegetable shops, artisans, and creative studios.

I started making a series of bonsai pots at the ceramic studio Shiho. Here’s the basic process:

Step 1: Create shapes. Form clay into a block, slice off slabs, place slabs around molds covered in cheese cloth, remove, and let sit to harden.

Step 2 (between 2 days and 2 weeks after creating shapes): Trim the tops and sides. Add holes and channels for drainage. Carve name in bottom.

Step 3: First firing.

Step 4: Add glaze. I will leave each pot partly unglazed to show off the clay.

Step 5: Second firing.

The whole process may take 6 to 8 weeks, depending on the studio’s firing schedule and my free time.

Small green wall improves sidewalk

Across from the 246 elevated freeway in Meguro I saw this simple green wall make of ficus vine. It only extends one story high, but it provides a nice experience for pedestrians on the sidewalk. Along with the typical ginko street tree and azalea bushes between the sidewalk and road, the wall uses minimal space to provide a green corridor. Apart from occasional trimming, I imagine it’s very low cost and low maintenance.