Just A Plant In A Pot

At times during the best months of the year for my hobby of bonsai, I do, as many will know, enjoy hugely mucking about with small pots n plants in the vain hope I can make some attractive ones. Now let’s be absolutely clear here, my accents / kusamono are on a par with what Rita Cooper & Dan Barton have forgotten! If you REALLY want to see some absolutely mind blowing accents read on. If not then I have uploaded an image below to look at.

The 2012 Magical Accent Show near Bristol was amazing; and hint hint I hope we have another in 2014; nudge nudge. Some superb images of Ritta’s accents HERE and some also from Dan Barton and his lovely wife Cecilia HERE. And a few more HERE.

Now I realise the images I’ve included here by link have been seen before, but truly I could not resist sharing once again. Also other than Dan B and Ritta, many other talented people had their very own accents on display. They are all stars. Oh and my mind wanders when I start speaking into this voice activated thingy; I may leave it one day to show you how it writes! Still one good finger to sort those annoying red underlines; I’ve done it again, wandered, sorry all, back to accents then.

And what started this post in my mind, was a pot I have moved a Gypsophila cerastioides ‘Baby’s Breath.’ into. (Who the heck makes these names up? Baby’s Breath??? I’d originally put this tiny thing in a very tall pot but fancied a change. Camera was my Canon with the 55-250mm reduced image size in PSE and slightly cropped. f7 ISO200 custom WB and set on TV settings.

So nothing wonderful, just a cheap wee pot from the garden centre that is not frost proof; so later this year this wee darlin will be planted in the rockery. I personally get great satisfaction from this hobby; one need not be brilliant at it, just so long as you enjoy it, and what you do works for you .. warts n all! Anyway as usual, my thanks for reading, on the basis someone other than me actually does 🙂

indoor pot

Made Myself A Quick Faux ‘Ji-ita’

John B is currently making me a nice Ji-ita slice for personal use; his skills are simply amazing. For now I had a bit of wood so thinned it down and put a fake edge on to sort of look like bark.

I just want it for standing my wee accent plants on when taking images of. Not sure what wood or where it came from, but anyway, it will do until ‘Big-John’ comes through. When he does I will share the new new slice at that time. For now though my little effort.

Dan Barton pot with Sempervivum.

new slice 2

The slab on top of the monkey pole is the sandstone one that I mentioned t’other day.

Here it is without pot. Oh I prepared at eventual 2000 grit and coated with three layers of Liberon finishing oil. Once each coat had dried I nipped off lightly before applying subsequent coats. Finally with my machine from old vehicle detailing days I used some lime Prime on a 3M finishing pad at 400rpm and then 1000rpm; this has the effect of making a glass like surface and the heat generated makes the coated finish as hard as a rock. If you do machine finish take great care not to burn the surface. Topped of with Dodo wax.

new slice 3

Close up of edges which is simply some Wickes exterior two-pack wood filler. Similar to vehicle dent filler actually but slightly softer. Painted with Humbrol modelling paints and sealed with pigment fixer.

new slice 4

Bit of a cobble up I know but hey ho, it’ll do till John B comes through. Hmmm a poem going on there 🙂

Thanks for looking at my blog and I’m glad that I can once again start up with some entries now I have this voice activated software for typing instead of the arthritic fingers. Sigh, age doesn’t come easy for some. On the upside though the rain has stopped, winds have eased and maybe the Met Office is wrong with its 60mph gusts for tomorrow.

Those Birdies!

I’ll say ‘bless em’ but honestly you’d think they would behave a tad better. I’d made up a nice wee Kusamono with a variety of locally grown (my garden) ‘stuff’ including wee Violas, various sedums and of course moss.

Tis usually the first thing I do when i’ve had breakfast is go outside and check all is as it should be. Today though it was not quite as it should have been! We give them fat balls, nuts, bread water every day; we really do look after our fine-feathered-freinds, and they repay me like this. Grrrrrr.

Walsall pot ripped up


Dianthus to Dan Barton Pot

I felt this beautiful Dan Barton Pot (aren’t they all?) suited this Dianthus India Star perfectly. I purchased the plant by way of a recent visit to Hestercombe House. Virtually all old soil removed and planted into a nice free draining mix. These most certainly do not like sitting in a wet muck.

Several days on now it is recovering well. The image is a Canon 500D and I slipped back into what is still my own personal favourite lens; the 55-250mm.

Accent DB pot

Tony R At Work

I would say recently of course, but twenty five years ago doesn’t really work. Tony had a BBC video converted recently to digital, and personally I found it quite fascinating to watch his amazing techniques.

Quarter of a century later Tony is still making beautiful pots, so please don’t hesitate to have a look through his current selection. Go directly to his site HERE.

Anyway, the point of my post was to share the digital video. So here it is in all its glory.


Two New Pots Today

Two wonderful pots arrived today from my good friend Tony Remington. Tony sure knows a thing or two about making pots and usually I cannot resist some of his new ideas. The first I have in mind to try a miniature rose and see how it works. If not then I will look around.

10cm tall, and 11cm deep I have quite a bit of room to play with. This one did not sell first time round on Tony’s site and I must breathe a sigh of relief it did not. This is just pot making at its absolute finest.

TR1 pot today

Next is something completely new for Tony and to say I’m delighted would be an understatement. Tony has such an eye for detail. He also has the biggest hands I have ever seen; how he makes these perfectly shaped pots is beyond me.

Size is 12cm diameter, and 6cm deep. I am uncertain what is destined for this one so will have a good think or three.

TR pot 2 today


Thank you Tony!

Still On Accents.

I’ve made a couple of changes so felt I would share. This Dan Barton pot really is one of my most cherished pots. When I purchased this one I did not see that it graduated down to a cobalt blue at the bottom. Looks almost pearlescent .

This Echeveria when I carefully checked, was sat in rather soggy soil. My fault as I thought it best to duplicate what the plant came in from the garden centre. At times this memory thing is such a nuisance; I should have stuck with what has worked for me in the past. The mix I have used here is: one part C/L, smallish particulates, one part Akadama, sieved and graded to small bordering on medium size; one part Kyodama and not quite one part of chopped bark. In this instance my good friend Richie dropped off a large bucket full of Melcourt Propagating.

I have bolstered the mix to include an organic solid feed similar in size to Osmocote. It states it is a 5-5-6 and especially made for growing Chillies. Oddly the boxes although different contained exactly the same. Still at 99p for a kilo it works for me.

Before I pop the image on I wanted to be certain to share this link HERE; which is from Magical Bonsai Accents and written by Robin Jehan. It really is a great read, and I recommend you have a look. Ritta Cooper, probably one of the most mentioned of Kusamono creators also has on the same site images of her own beautiful creations. WARNING! Only view if you can cope with a quick swoon. They really are amazing. HERE

My wee Echeveria in pot mentioned.

Echeveria 2

Tis all for now; no doubt I’ll find something to chunter on about tomorrow. Oh and thank you for all the follows, likes and of course your comments.

Accents Again.

Found some images I missed dropped into another folder so thought I’d include. I was sat on the patio, on a chair while my wife changed the pots over for me (I’m disabled), during the while a lady blackbird turned up, took a look at me and simply carried on ignoring me completely other than a casual sideways glance intermittently.

Other than pulling out all the sedum, crapping all over the lovely newly painted birdhouse & feeders, wrecking an odd accent they give us so much pleasure. I’ have ended this post with some shots of said Lady B.

Here I’m a bit confused, this Lewisia Little Plum has given me a profusion of flowers and this must be the sixth week or so that it carries on. The foliage however is not doing so well and my worry at this stage is it may not make it. If anyone can advise me I’d be grateful. Pot is an ERIN.


One of my absolute favourite pots a very shallow Dan Barton made one.Just 1.5 cm wide and very shallow. I’d been reducing this Sempervivum down for a while now and it seems to have settled well into … wait for it, drum roll, CAT LITTER and some propagating bark topped off with lightweight aquarium stone. I know I know, I’ve always condemned the use of litter. This is non clumping Sophisticat Pink which came from Pets at Home. I understand this is high fired baked clay similar to Seramis but lighter and pretty grand at retaining moisture. I used it as I simply cannot afford Akadama any longer, and apart from the perfumed smell which does dissipate fairly quick it seems fine. If everything dies then I’ll ditch it. Offer the link has is two 30 litre bags for £16 which I can assure you is a heck of a lot. Dust seems minimal and sieving down to two sizes was easy enough. Initially with this I’ve gone with 75% CL to 25% chopped mini bark.

The odd colour will likely fade, but top dressed this is no issue. If you canna beat them .. join them is what Pop used to say.

The pot then after all that gabble.


This ERIN pot is a firm favourite with plenty of room. 11.5cm wide x 6cm deep. Blue Mouse Ears Hosta but actually not doing very well. What is it with me and miniature hostas!?


This £3 pot from a garden centre is housing a small alpine Dianthus. Not frost proof at all so I’ll remove plant for Winter. Just handy for a pit of colour. 9cm deep x 8.5cm wide.


A wee Birthday present from my wife, a lovely pot planted up with Rhodohypoxis. I like to have pots at ground level to splash some colour around.


And finally. Madam Blackbird.

birdie 5a birdie 3a birdie 2a

Thank you for looking and if you can help out on those questions I’ll be really grateful.

Some More Then.

Right, fingers are functioning again so here then is the other images I took yesterday. Can’t do any today as it seems like hurricane force out on the patio today!

One of my favourite pots from a smashing chap, Simon of Suteki. 5cm in width and 3cm depth. Clearly being so small this is really suited to sempervivums or similar that can stand a while without water. Check his site if you have time, he knows a thing or two about making stunning pots and creating accents. Oh the sedum just grows on the patio and this time of year the Blackbirds release some for me. I just pick it up where it lays and pot it up.


Another ERIN pot from Vic. Quite a recent one this is for me. Stands 8cm tall x 5cm wide (all measurements are approx. BTW). Planted up with some young Viola plants that have been grown from seed here at home. Not certain what this one will be as I mixed the labels up. (Can’t rely on anything these days, let alone myself!) Anyway the fun comes as the flower arrives. I’lll keep fingers crossed for split colour orange and purple.


An old Chinese pot that I have had here in the cupboard planted up with the other Echeveria I have. Think this one has more red colour.


A rather nice (I think so anyway) pot made in China I believe; 7cm x 7cm housing one of my miniature hostas. I’ve really not done at all well with any of my wee hostas this year. Not quite sure what went wrong.


ERIN pots again here. Very different to my usual choice in pots. 7.5cm wide x 6.5 tall. The Semper in this pot is the one that has the mass of cobweb like strands all around it. Clearly I’ve forgotten the variety name. Added some sedum from same patio which is just coming into flower.


Finally for now a Chinese pot sat doing nothing so I used one of my much larger Sempervivums, and it will stay there until I need the pot for anything else .. or not as the case may be. I’ll get some more up when this infernal wind dies out; which may be never. Whatever happened to glorious summer days????? BBQ has cobwebs!


‘Shrooms’ Already!

In a brief moment without any rain, I thought I would seize the opportunity to have a ‘potter’ round outside.  I couldn’t help noticing all the Mushrooms and Toadstools growing away. Normally here in the South west of ‘Blighty,’ the emergence of same would not be until at least late September through to November end.

This 2012 year is turning into a horrible damp depressing one. I see and hear from many friends in the USA that are hugely burdened by excessive heat! What a shame we cannot meet halfway.

So out with the trusty camera for a few quick pictures of some of my very own garden ‘Shrooms!’