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Early Spring Workshop on Deciduous

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This workshop will run in August if there is sufficient interest. Please indicate your interest by adding your email address above. You will then be of the first to be notified should it run.


Early spring is one of the busiest times of the year on the bonsai calendar.

It is for deciduous trees the best time to check your trees to confirm whether they need repotting or not. Sometimes it is unnecessary to simply go ahead and repot, perhaps roughing up the surface of your growing medium is all that is required to once again allow air and water to pass freely.

Selecting a suitable growing medium can be very confusing and is indeed a very contentious debate. However in this workshop you will be guided on the best growing medium for your specific tree bearing in mind your watering routine and development goals.

Many people think they know how to repot but could still benefit from a little guidance, that's what I will be there for. I will also show you how to properly secure your tree safely into a container and then how to thoroughly work new growing medium into the roots.

When repotting it is one of the few times that we can scrutinize and improve the roots of our trees. If there are gaps in your nebari there are techniques which can be used to fill them, such as root grafting. If this is needed on your tree be sure to bring it along, with the young trees you intend to graft with, and let me show you how to perform this invaluable technique.

Missing a branch or need to fill some negative space? No problem. This is the ideal time to do a thread graft. I can show you how to perform this technique that will open many new styling opportunities to you.

Course Outline

Participants will be guided on the following:

  1. check trees to determine whether repotting is necessary.
  2. based on the tree species, age and stage of development which growing medium would be best.
  3. how to properly remove spent growing medium and determine the amount of roots which can safely be removed and how.
  4. securing your tree and properly introducing new growing media.
  5. purpose for and application of sphagnum moss.
  6. evaluation of the nebari and perform any necessary root grafts.
  7. identify areas whether thread grafting will be of benefit.

Who should do the course

This is a course which is ideal for all skill levels. As this is a small group workshop, limited to 8 participants Terry Erasmus will be able to assist you at a level you are comfortable with and you will also be able to learn from fellow delegates who are also receiving instruction.

    What is included

    You will be provided with a covered space in which to work.

    Morning tea and coffee included for all delegates. Please bring your own lunch and any additional refreshments you might like.

    Please bring the following or order it prior to the workshop and it will be available to you upon arrival:

    Recommended tools

    Typical tools related to repotting (Check out this collection). Various growing media will be available but to be sure please let me know of any specific needs after visiting this collection.

    Stone Lantern will have a selection of bonsai pots to select from if you need, alternatively you can select from the various containers on this website, ordering them prior to the workshop please.

    If doing grafting be sure to bring the necessary tools. You are welcome to contact me to confirm if you are uncertain of what to bring.

      What you need to bring

      • Notepad and writing implements.
      • Please bring your own tools or order them at least 24hrs prior to the event and I will bring them to you. At least one deciduous tree to work on or you {might} purchase on the day.


      Stone Lantern Bonsai. 32 Owl Street, Joostenberg Vlakte, Kraaifontein, Cape Town, 7550. Google Map. Contact: 083 375 0446 or visit their website.


      Subject to sufficient interest. Leave your email address in the form above and you will be notified.


      • The workshop is limited to 8 people.
      • Your space in this workshop is guaranteed only upon receipt of full payment on a first come first served basis.
      • Should you need to cancel please inform me in writing a minimum of 72hrs (3 days) prior to the workshop and you will be refunded in full. If you fail to do so and are unable to prove an emergency, you will forfeit 100% of your fees.
      • Should there be insufficient interest I reserve the right to cancel the workshop, in which case you will be refunded 100% of your fee.