Name Your Own Price


Part of the problem with the bonsai business is that, at least as far as plants are concerned, there is a very limited supply. It’s not possible to walk into some mystical superstore reserved exclusively for commercial suppliers and fill your boots. We can’t just buy what we need when we need it and here in the UK with the plant inspectorate acting like some Gestapo-come-lately, bonsai supply via importation is becoming increasingly precarious, particularly since the inception of ‘destructive testing’. Obviously the brain child of someone educated beyond their intellectual capacity. ph.D. = Post Hole Digger !

The nett result is that we have to buy what we can where we can. I have been going a bit nuts this year buying bonsai. So far three lorry loads of yamadori and multiple private collections. When buying the latter we usually buy everything including the benches and on occasions that means obtaining items we didn’t really want and that brings me neatly to the point of this rambling post……..

I have a personal dislike of bonsai ‘group’ or ‘forest’ plantings. It’s not that they are bad it’s just that they don’t float my boat in any meaningful way. However we know a great many folk love working on these types of thing particularly since they can offer great value for money. Earlier this year I bought a big collection of bonsai which included this massive forest of Japanese larch. To be honest I bought the pot and planned to bin the trees. Since that time however I have taken a softer view as several folk have expressed admiration for this old group. I have no frame of reference as to how we should price this and so I thought it would be a novel idea to ask for offers.

The tree measures approximately 34″ tall and 50″ wide. The pot is a nice, good condition Chinese stoneware item. The tree is available exactly as you see it here. We can ship, most parts of the UK will cost around £60 by wooden crate on a 2-3 day service. Bear that in mind if you want it delivered. Collection from us in Gt Yarmouth is ‘Free’ in the parlance of ebay which, of course it’s not unless you have a car that moves around on thin air with no road tax but, I digress.

I can easily realise £250 for the pot and am entirely open to offers above that figure. Just make a comment below with your offer, these won’t be made public, alternatively give me a call or ping an email. Comments will close and the offer will end in 30 days. If in the meantime I get a blinding offer the tree will go because we need the space desperately, you snooze you loose! I’m not interested in stage payments or Px on this one, first with a payment gets it. I obviously reserve the right to refuse any offer and a brusque response awaits insulting offers from chancers 😉

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4 thoughts on “Name Your Own Price

  1. I agree that there must be controls but more common sense would not hurt. Most of the industries suffer from over-regulation that offers nothing most of the time; just waste of time and loads of money. At the end of the day the end consumer pays the price and the product he/she gets is not guaranteed to be any better/safer with more “sensible” controls. This trend of spreading fear over disease (human, plant etc) leads nowhere.

  2. Amazing planting, I got a couple when I started but they’re not my favourites by a long way. I also made the beginners mistake of buying cheap, I’ll be long gone before they look “right”.
    Slight change of subject, I was reading your Inspiring stuff article about the Juniperus Chinensis Blaauw which was your first wiring project. The slab planting with the rock looks absolutely amazing, have you considered doing more in that style?
    Any news on Kevin Willson styled trees yet?
    Regards and best wishes to you all.

  3. We entirely support the legislation regarding plant imports. All of the plants we carry are cleared by the relevant plant inspectorate bodies in the country of origin (EU in our case). All of the plants we import are covered by the EU plant passport system where applicable. However based upon the experiences of those we know who are importing plants from outside the EU the UK plant inspectorate is employing draconian interpretation of the legislation, in some cases, that is not seen in any way in EU countries which enforce the same rules. The examples we have seen of ‘knee jerk’ reactions to some situations is simply insane. I won’t be posting those examples here but as a very public example…. There is a road not too far from here that is lined with a strip of ash woodland along both sides. Down one side of the road all of the (healthy) trees were destroyed in the interests of preventing the spread of ash die back, the other side of the road was left untouched. I’m no expert but what is that all about? Ash die back (Hymenoscyphus fraxineus) spreads by air borne spores and has been spreading west across Europe for years, inevitably it was going to come here at some point, everyone knew this but until the media descended upon the story nothing was happening and legal imports continued.

    Destroying healthy clean plants and trees seems to me to be a crazy way of preventing the spread of disease unless ALL of the plants are removed. Thankfully many plants will prove to be immune and so the species can recover, as in the case of Ulmus procera but not if they have all been destroyed. By that measure we should kill everyone who just might happen to be at risk of catching and spreading infectious disease. Why have we not banned travel to places where there is a high risk of infection with Zika? How is that any different?

    Bonsai folk are extremely vigilant in their care of plants and so is the industry as a whole. Everyone I know loves trees and upholds the regulations and has a responsible attitude. As a reward we seem to be hammered by the authorities to where imports have almost dried up because the financial risk is too great. However the wider horticultural and timber trades seem to get away with murder. It’s a sad fact that now, with the almost inconceivable movement of biomass around the globe, wether plants animals or humans, the spread of disease is entirely unstoppable and whatever measures we put in place will, eventually, be overwhelmed, it’s just a matter of time.

    No good ever came of leaving home.


  4. Sorry, but I fully support plant health/plant passport/ plant inspectorate. We shouldn’t try to wriggle out of wider plant health issues out of selfish bonsai desires. I work as an aboriculturalist – and over my 30 years in the profession I’ve seen the increase of devastating and potentially devastating pests and diseases arrive and sadly, becoming established. Some routes involve nursery stock – whether on plants or in the soil in pots. Just because a bonsai is small doesn’t mean it isn’t a tree and able to host pests/diseases. I’ve also seen bonsai nurseries offering for sale species whose movement in the U.K. is currently prohibited (Ash).

    I also have concerns about wild collection… here or abroad. Two outbreaks of Phytophthora in a local favourite collecting spot near me – including P. ramorum – a soil borne disease that can result in all nearby plants having to be destroyed to contain the disease – imagine if you’d dug up a promising tree from an infected area and taken that time bomb home … is just one example of why bonsai enthusiasts – and yes, suppliers – need to wise up on wider tree health issues.

    The controls, in my opinion, should be more strict, not less.

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