Wednesday, March 13, 2013

dragon shrub

this one is not from Beacon Hill, which is too bad because it should be! Vancouver BC

Thursday, October 11, 2012

The Next 50

I sent the Behi Bonsai tour video to the 'Next 50 A Story Runs Through It'  neighborhood film celebration because I knew that Beacon Hill needed to be represented.  You can see all of the submissions HERE

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Bubble Bonsai

I just liked how these bubble bonsai worked with the curved stairs.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Thinking too much

I've been thinking about posting too much and not actually posting.  I have many bonsai examples rolling around and I just need to get them out there.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Behi Bonsai Neighborhood Tour

If your a regular of Behi Bonsai you will already recognize many of these images from previous posts/videos but I realized that I had literally 100's of additional photos that I have never used so I mashed them all up for a new super video Beacon Hill tour that I hope you will enjoy.  I edited it more creatively rather than consecutively so it bounces all over the hill, but there is  plenty in here that any Beacon Hiller should recognize and hopefully a few surprises.

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Pink Popsicles

Spring, Behi Bonsai style.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Bonsai Hearts for Valentines Day

I was going to post some heart shaped bonsai for Valentines Day anyway, but someone beat me to it by installing a series of heart shaped bushes in Jefferson Park this morning. I know that everyone will think that I did it, but I didn't.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Out of Town Bonsai

I don't normally post Bonsai from off of Beacon Hill, but then someone sends me something like this from San Francisco. How can I not post it?

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Portland Hipstomatic

My biggest regret this week? While on my recent tour of Portland I failed to get a photo of a topiary that was actually spray painted, you will have to use your imagination. It was however a good chance for me to test out my new wide angle lens on my iphone combined with the hipstomatic app it was quite fun.

Easy Topiary

As many of you know, I may be a topiary admirer, but I don't really know that much about how they are actually made. That has changed a little now thanks to a recent article "Easy Topiary for the Garden" over at South End Seattle blog. Check it out!

Monday, January 17, 2011


I've been thinking of the Latin phrase "ORDO AB CHAO" meaning ORDER OUT OF CHAOS. It is something that we all do. Born into a crazy world we stretch our brains to make sense of a senseless world, we form languages and societies, create myths and even wars in search of our place in the universe. During a difficult period in his life ground-breaking pshycologist Carl Jung devoted much of his time investigating the nature of the unconscious, Jung frequently painted or drew mandalas, but only learned to understand the mandala symbology many years later. Jung believed that his mandalas were “cryptograms” of the state of the self as it was on the day the mandala was created. He also believed that mandalas appear in connection with dreams, chaotic psychic states of disorientation or panic as they did in Jung’s own life, and that a function of the mandalas is to bring order out of chaos.
I've decided that there is something calming and centering about taking a 'natural' shaped plant and making it into something entirely new, and perhaps recognizable and orderly.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Plant Amnesty can kiss my Bonsai!

Okay, it's one thing if you don't like Beacon Hill's funky shrubbery, but its a whole different issue when you refer to it as being 'goofy' as Cass Turnbull seems to have done in today's Seattle Times article on Plant Amnesty. I can certainly appreciate wanting to protect plants from senseless mutilation but Plant Amnesty seems to have nominated themselves the arbiters of taste with comments like "When the inherent beauty of a plant is compromised, it's painful for those of us who know what it should look like,"
Who gave Plant Amnesty the authority to decided what plants should look like? They have a Shear Madness photo section on their blog and I actually think that some of the photos are amazing and I find their comments to be culturally insensitive.

That's why we are introducing a new T-Shirt! Let Plant Amnesty know what you think of their mission and show your Beacon Hill pride at the same time! All proceeds go towards Beacon Arts celebrating creativity in all its forms on Beacon Hill.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Bonsai visits Annoying Orange

I couldn't resist posting a talking bonsai!

Monday, January 3, 2011

BeHi Bonsai in the Seattle Times

Stop holding your breath, the Seattle Times article on BeHi Bonsai is out now! Go read it! Here it is!

Thanks Val Easton for recognizing our neighborhoods unique contributions. This has already opened a flood gate of information so I will be posting more soon.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

We found a snow Haiku in honor of the first snow

first snow --
begins in the darkness
ends in the darkness

-NOZAWA Setsuko (1920-1995)

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Bonsai Tour with Val Easton

Val Easton is a freelance horticulture writer of many important books on NW gardening and contributed greatly to our local and national understanding of plants. I had the good fortune recently of dragging her along on a bonsai safari through Beacon Hill. In the photo above we are debating whether that shrub is in the shape of a duck or some other unidentifiable object.

I hope she had as much fun as I had and at the very least I think she got a good sampling of the funky shrubbery that Beacon Hill has to offer. She is working on a piece about Beacon Hill's unusual shrubbery for the Seattle Times Pacific Northwest Magazine that will be coming out in a few weeks so hopefully our neighborhood will get some well deserved recognition for our unconventional yards.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Bonsai Donut

Sadly, I didn't even notice this one at first. I was so enamored of the modernist forms of these well shaped shrubs contrasted against the classically mid century modernist architecture that I didn't even notice that one of them was actually a doughnut shape until someone pointed it out to me! Check out the detail image.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

The Wave

Thanks to Beacon Hill neighbor Saya Moriyasu for showing me this one. She called it 'the wave' and I can understand why. It dips and swells beyond what shrubbery should be allowed.

Friday, July 30, 2010

Cutting Edge Bonsai

Sometimes artist try out different mediums than they usually use just to flex their creativity. I was reminded of this recently when I ran across these fantastic shrubs on the North East end of Beacon Hill. They reminded me of a mosaic floor that had been designed by famed NW painter Guy Anderson. Because mosaic is so different than paint it forced him out of his safety zone and although risky he came up with something truly unique and amazing.
Obviously this bonsai sculpture is also pushing the limits of what a shrub can be asked to do as this yard artist has sculpted some meticulous edges to these fine forms. Truly a master crafts person at work!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Bonsai is Like a Box of Chocolates

You never know what you are going to get. I spotted this yard on North Beacon Hill today full of equally sized well trimmed bushes, it reminded me of a chocolate sampler.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

The Beehive, newest trend in Bonsai

The very latest in Spring Bonsai fashion seems to be the 'Beehive' shape, I've noticed this fresh look coming forward all over Beacon Hill this spring.

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Don't Make Me Go Medieval

I hate to drift away from my normal bonsai focus, but this house a few blocks south west of Jefferson Park seemed worthy of mentioning. I'm not sure where all of the treasures come from that adorn this mini-castle, but it looks as if someone has been plundering medieval palaces and displaying their hoard of loot right here on Beacon Hill.
The good news is that they still have a large pile of stone on the side of the house waiting for their next project. If I got to vote I would say that this place needs a catapult or maybe even a dungeon.
I wouldn't want to be the unwanted door to door salesman to come to this house, you might get hot oil poured on you from the ramparts.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Bonsai in Spring

Try to imagine that this is not the worst photo that I have ever taken. Just as I was going to take the photo the home owner came out and looked at me inquisitively. How could I explain why I was taking a photo of his shrub?

So use your imagination a little and you will understand that spring is in the air and even the Behi Bonsai are starting to blossom.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Small Spaces, Big Bonsai

I ran across this one in an alley near viewpoint park in North Beacon Hill. Proof that you don't need much space to create some funky bonsai.

Bonsai Reward

I know that there are a lot of great Beacon Hill Bonsai treasures out there still left for me to discover. But between my busy work schedule and our winters lack of sunshine I have been unmotivated to find new bonsai. So I'm going to try things the lazy way and offer a FREE BEHI BONSAI T-SHIRT to anyone that suggests a yard that can be included in the blog. Just let me know an address and description and I will take care of the rest. Mail your suggestions to behi.bonsai (at)

***editors note*** thanks to the Beacon Hill Blog for the shout-out. But I thought I should clarify. I'm happy for all tips for bonsai treasures but you only get a free t-shirt if we feature your bonsai on the blog, so it better be pretty good. This is a limited time offer so act now!

Okay, you missed it already...contest closed...but you can always buy merchandise here.