Newsletter....January/February 2018
PBS Newsletter Archives

January Meeting

Last month, we were cursed by the weather! While we didn't cancel the meeting, only a few brave souls made it to the community center. As a result the Board members present decided to postpone the Holiday Raffle. Those gifts, along with a hidden free MABS registration will be raffled off this month as part of our make-up meeting.
Added to this extra meeting will be BYO workshop, which is a chance to get some help on a tree, or do some early trimming and wiring. It's too early to repot, so let's hold off on that until later in the spring (which IS coming!).
Finally, Bob Mahler will be outlining details of the Flower Show exhibit, in terms of times needed and options at the "teaching" table, the general display arrangement, and other details.
Check in for a good time, some good information, and some good raffle prizes! Coffee and snacks will be available.

BYO Workshop/Flower Show planning/Holiday raffle
Date: Saturday, January 20
Location: Greater Plymouth Community Center
Time: 10:00 - 1:00
Raffle Drawings at 11:30

February Meeting

Next month's meeting will give us the lowdown (the dirt if you must say), on bonsai soils. Jim Gillespie and Mike Wigginton have all the information that you could ever want regarding bonsai soils (actually, no soil is involved, but you knew that!). What is the ideal mix for our trees? You may be surprised at the answers!
Bring a small sample of your mix to add to the discussion.

Don't forget - the second MABS raffle will be held this month!

Guest Speakers: Jim Gillespie & Mike Wigginton
Date: Friday, February 16
Location: Greater Plymouth Community Center
Time: 7:00

Flower Show Notes

The 2018 Philadelphia Flower Show, "Wonders of Water" will be held from March 3rd to the 11th. PBS will again be displaying bonsai, and providing information to show attendees.
Since PBS is now going solo at the Flower Show, Bob has asked that any member interested in working on the demo side of the exhibit can sign up to do so. Members can work on a tree or just meet and greet show attendees.
Linda Brant will be glad to sign you up for one or more exhibit sitting spots. Free admission to the Flower Show will be provided to sitters (in fact, sitters on the first morning shift can get into the Flower Show ahead of the general public). Contact Linda - or 610-416-3216 - or sign up at an upcoming meeting.

Seasonal Notes

Several possible problems can arise should this extreme cold persist (writing this with the temp at 12º). Trees in outdoor storage can actually dry out due to the very low humidity and wind resulting in loss. If you have a few consecutive days above freezing, try to water. Trees in indoor storage (unheated garage or such) tend to fare a bit better, but still you're faced with the possibility of drying out.
We tend to keep a regular schedule of watering bonsai stored in the garage, usually every 10 days to two weeks, provided things aren't frozen.
What to do on these winter days?? Sharpen tools - Inventory supplies (wire, fertilizer, screens, bonsai soil, etc.) - Read a bonsai book - Check the web for new bonsai sites or visit favorites - Do some wiring (be sure branches are thawed) - Do some pruning - Build some bonsai benches - Go shopping for display items - Take some photos of winter silhouettes - Visit a bonsai studio - Get your bonsai records up to date - Organize for repotting - Watch some bonsai videos - Register for MidAtlantic -
Have some bonsai fun!!!

Weather Related Meeting Notifications

Over the years, we have had very few cancellations due to the weather, but sometimes we get caught in a storm. If we are faced with a cancellation, the following procedures will take place.
A. If you are on the email list for newsletters - you will receive cancellation notice by email.
B. If you are not on the email list, then check the web site. Cancellation notice will be posted prominently on the home page.
C. If you do not have computer access, a board member will attempt to contact you by phone.
D. We will also try to place a notice on KYW radio.
E. We will attempt to notify the Community Center.

If you are in doubt about a meeting taking place, be sure to check with any Board member or the Community Center (610-277-4312) before leaving home.

MidAtlantic Festival

Dates for the 2018 MABS Spring Festival - April 13-15 to be held at the Raddison Cromwell Hotel, 100 Berlin Road, Cromwell, Connecticut.
This month's artist's feature will focus on Tony Tickle
Tony Tickle has been working with bonsai for over 35 years. He teaches and demonstrates at major conferences, clubs, societies and organizations throughout the world. Tony is a member of numerous bonsai organizations throughout the UK and has a regular column in Bonsai Focus magazine. Tony specializes in native European trees, in particular hawthorn, pine and yew and has been nominated and won many awards for his trees. He has served on the Board of Director for Bonsai Clubs International from 2003-2005 and is a member of Association of British Bonsai Artists, Tony is a founding member of ‘Black Scissors’ the global creative brotherhood of bonsai artists. An event planner, in 2015 Tony organized Bonsai Europa the biggest bonsai event to take place in the UK since 1991. Recently Tony won the prestigious “Best Deciduous Bonsai” award at the 2017 Noelanders Trophy in Belgium for a raft-style hawthorn he collected from a hillside in 1991.
Not afraid to speak his mind Tony seeks to promoted Bonsai as an art form in its own right, hosting exhibitions in Museums and Art Galleries along with unusual locations that capture the public imagination. He has presented bonsai in creative and dynamic way courting controversy and praise in equal measure.
Some yews (taxus baccata), one of Tony’s specialty, grown by Mark Comstock have been selected for this workshop.
Registration forms are available online. Online registration and payment are also available. Just go to and click on Spring Festival > Digital Registration. Workshops and Critiques will fill up quickly, so register as soon as possible. The workshop material for this year's Festival is outstanding. Don't overlook the added workshop with John Romano featuring material specially grown for shohin. Special motel rates of $99/night are available for registrants.
We would like to have four trees from our members for Exhibit at the Festival. Please contact Jim Brant, Jim Gillespie, or John Berna if you are interested - transportation can be arranged.

Directions to the Greater Plymouth Community Center

From Pennsylvania Turnpike (I-276)-Take Exit 333 (Norristown - old exit 25). At the end of the ramp, turn left onto Plymouth Road. At the light, turn right onto Germantown Pike West. Continue approximately one (1) mile, through five (5) traffic lights. At the sixth light, turn right onto Jolly Road. The Community Center is on the right at 2910 Jolly Road.
From Blue Route (I-476)-Take exit for Germantown Pike West (Exit 20). Continue on Germantown Pike west for approximately one (1) mile, through six (6) traffic lights. At the seventh light ti right onto Jolly Road. The Community Center is on the right at 2910 Jolly Road.
From Route 202-Follow Route 202 to Germantown Pike. Travel EAST on Germantown Pike, through five (5) traffic lights. At the next traffic light, approximately half a mile, turn left on Jolly Road.

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