and the Future

Trident Maple that I’ve been working on since 2014.

I know it’s been awhile since I’ve written a blog and now that my business as grown a bit and become more stable, I’ve decided to restart the blog in 2021! New post won’t be too different than the past post though I’ll be more focused on what I’m doing in Bonsai after my apprenticeship. I still plan on talking about different horticultural and philosophical concepts of Bonsai, new concepts I’ve learned since my return from Japan and the day to day grind of a Bonsai Artist/Professional.

With the New Year, I’ve decided to start fresh with a new website! My new site will include the blog, general information and a sales areas for Ceramics and Bonsai. It will also contain all of my previous post of my time in Japan. If you subscribe to the new blog, you will get email notices every time a new article is posted.

The new site is For those that still type in into your browser, it will automatically forward you to See, I’m looking out for you!

Life Lessons

A hawk being pestered by a mocking bird.

One day I was in my kitchen making breakfast I heard an unusually high amount of bird squawking noises outside. I looked out through the window and saw a Red-tail hawk sitting on a branch like a stone figure with a smaller bird flying around it, yelling and even at times ramming itself into the hawk and bouncing off of it as if it was really stone. I watched this happen for several minutes and though to myself, “Wow, nothing is fazing this hawk at all, and that little bird is persistent!” I returned to making my breakfast and would check on the birds every 20 minutes or so and they were still at it. At least the small bird was still at it. The hawk just stood there like nothing was going on.

After a few hours, I checked again and the birds were gone. Either the small bird was finally successful or the hawk decided to move on on its own. I know they didn’t do anything to each other because I’ve seen the hawk and the small bird on their own on several occasions. Later I looked it up and found that the small bird was a type of Mocking bird.

I never really forgot about the interactions between the two animals. It was fascinating to watch and I was impressed with both. On one hand, you have a hawk that was so stable and confident that nothing was going to move it (it even stared at me for awhile while as I watched). On the other hand, you have this smaller mocking bird not giving up until the Hawk decided to move on. I suppose there’s a metaphor of ourselves in this scene or a life lesson that can be learned or reinforced. Do we relate more to the Hawk or the Mocking Bird? Can we learn something positive from both sides? Does it have anything to do with sides as opposed to just understanding the whole situation and learning from it?

Maybe I just like looking at birds…

A group of clients I took to Aichien in early 2019

In Bonsai, we create, study and view Bonsai. We all individually relate or respond to different styles and shapes and it’s important that we see all sides. One of the traps that many Bonsai artist and hobbyist fall into, is snap judgements of different Bonsai styles because it either fits or doesn’t fit their concept of what Bonsai is and completely forget there’s something to learn about Bonsai in a broader perspective. Especially when the topic of naturalistic styles vs. abstract styles pop up in discussions. Perhaps like the Hawk and the Mocking Bird, we can look from the outside and see the motivations of both and look for the positives (See, there was a point to the bird story). These will be one of the many topics I discuss in future post which I’m so excited to share!

Japanese Gardeners working on a J. Red pine with Cherry Blossoms blooming in the background. February 2019

I’m very much looking forward to 2021 as I believe you all are as well. I look forward to rebuilding the blog and sharing all sorts of stories and Bonsai information (with plenty of photos) to you all.

Thank you for supporting me in the past and into the future. Take care, Happy Holidays!

Thanks for reading.

Okay one more photo of Bonsai! Bunjin Juniper from Taikan-ten 2017.

13 thoughts on “ and the Future

  1. Graham Hues says:

    The best of the season to you Peter. Will definitely follow your journey and look forward to new posts in 2021. Cheers

  2. Alise Offeman says:

    Wow, looking forward to 2021 now – trees are looking a little shabby. Need some inspiration.

  3. Glad to see you back in E-action Peter ! Kevin in Milwaukee

  4. Jack Christiansen says:

    Hi Peter    I just wanted to take this time to thank you for everything you have done for our club and myself over this past year and the many years you have kept us bonsai students on track.  You are a very giving and loving person that has made many great strides as a hard working bonsai professional  And we are very proud of you because you are a true dedicated person to the best of  bonsai we all appreciate .  Thanks for all you have done for us who strive to come close to making you proud. Keep us working hard and making the difference for the bonsai community we represent and enjoy. May your holidays bring you joy and the friendship you have lovenly cultivated.  Your  Friend and admirer, Jack Christiansen 

  5. Sulaiman says:

    Hi Peter, use to follow you when you where an apprentice. Thought your blogs was the best in the business. Glad you restarting your blog.

    Sulaiman Galant
    South Africa

  6. Achim says:

    Hello Mr. Tea,

    for me, it´s one of the best Messages this year that your post will continiue! Thank you very much. I learned very much from your previous Posts and i´m looking forward to your new ones!
    Greetings from Lake Constance , Germany

  7. Bob Boyd says:

    Not a big deal but the hawk you photographed is a Red-shouldered Hawk (Buteo lineatus). A beautiful bird. Congratulations on capturing the action with the mocking bird!

  8. David Boll says:

    So glad that you will be keeping us well informed. Best wishes.

  9. June says:

    Glad to hear from you again. Always enjoyed your workshops. June

  10. ancientbonsaico says:

    Thanks Peter looking forward to new blog.

  11. Shimpaku65 says:

    Thanks for the post Peter. Good to see you posting again.

  12. Gilson says:

    It’s really one great notice! I ready all your posts and I’m very ancious for new posts!
    Have a good return e thank very much for sharing from Brazil.
    Gilson Reis

  13. Frank Corrigan says:

    Wonderful news, look forward to your posts! Thanks for sharing and contributing to the Bonsai community! Look forward to visiting in person when circumstances allow!

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