We went to the Hidden Lake Garden in the Irish Hills section of lower Michigan with two primary intentions; to visit the bonsai display behind the Observatories and to have a picnic lunch. Thursday was the best day for us (no doctor/dentist appointment that day) and what a lucky choice that was as it is the day that the volunteers come in to prune and care for the bonsai trees.
The gentleman above was shortening/pruning the “candles” from this evergreen to slow growth and maintain shape. We made a quick duck behind some fencing to take a look at the plants they hold in reserve for rotation to the display. There were a couple of specimens that showed me what they look like before pruning.
My last post was of photos taken of this bonsai exhibit back in 2017 and I posted this next photo stating I didn’t have any information but thought it is an apple tree.
It is an apple tree, first potted in 1969 and at that time it was estimated to be 11 years old and a volunteer provided me the “rest of the story.” It was started by a farmer who potted it from his orchard and it bears apples about the size of a golf ball. If you look close you can see the fruit forming on the plant that was just past blooming at this visit.
There were at least six volunteers working, moving smaller plants into their work garage for trimming. They worked with great concentration, taking each snip very seriously although they were very eager to chat and answer questions.
Besides getting an inside look at operations, I also focused on taking photographs of trees I hadn’t previously seen because of the rotation of exhibits and collecting identifying information in anticipation of writing this post.
The above gallery of photos are the ones I found most interesting on this visit. You can see bigger photos and get information by clicking on any of the photos.
I think this post is a good one for the Lens-Artist Challenge #149: Cool Colours – Blue & Green. Not only is the foliage of most of these bonsai plants green (or mostly green) but I think this would be a really “Cool” hobby for someone a bit younger than I am. My part in bonsai growing will be as the appreciative spectator.