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Below are the 20 most recent journal entries recorded in Ikebana studio's LiveJournal:

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Friday, May 3rd, 2013
3:07 pm
2:49 pm
Some images from the 4th Brookside Gardens exhibit
Narine 2011

Kyoko 2011

Pat 2011

Kyoko and Reiko

Valeria 2011
Thursday, April 4th, 2013
11:31 am
Hello from Henry Mitchell. A tiny bit of a mystic thing...
 I love Henry Mitchell. Who doesn't, if you are a gardener. I used to read his columns, starting from just 1990 untill his death, when I felt quite desperate with the crumbling of my country and  bombing of the city I grew in. His writinsg were of great help to me, taking my mind from the anguish I felt, suggesting an escape to a wonderful world of his little backyard full of wonderful plants, ideas and happenings. I have his books of essays, which I open, and pretty often. Considering my work with digitized texts, opening a real book is a luxury. Henry Mitchell is my invisible friend in the garden, whom I talk to, looking either at a beautiful flower or at a well rooted pokeweed I am supposed to weed... Well, if he is watching us, diggers of the dirt and workers of the ephemeral gardens from the Gardens of Heaven, where he is - no doubt about that - a gardener, than he saw me and listened to my talking about him with my Ikebana friends. Last week I was talking about his essays with Lanna, At first she didn't recognize whom I was so excited about, but the next thing she said was quite marvelous - Henry Mitchell's daughter works right next to her in her office. More than that - Lanna has a rose from Henry Mitchel's garden - a pink climber - am I am getting a rooted cutting some day. Isn't it wonderful?

Arrangement made in Boston at Professor Matsunaga's workshop:

Magnolia, flax, ruscus, freesya, fern.
Tuesday, December 11th, 2012
9:03 pm
metal and stone in the garden
beautiful together
Tuesday, December 4th, 2012
2:38 pm
Tuesday, December 20th, 2011
4:09 pm
Wolfgang Oehme and Kim Jung II
The horticulture world lost several outstanding plantsmen - Wolfgang Oehme among them, he has had an enormous impact on today's american gardening culture. I got the news from the papers and also from the newsletter of the nursery owner Toni Avent, who is quite an extraordinery plantsman himself. Besides, he is quite good with words. I was really taken by the following:
"Finally, the strangest of the plantsmen to pass away this month has to be North Korea’s Kim Jong Il...yes, you heard me right. The story goes back several years, when the late Dutch plant breeder Kees Sahin, who was friend of Kim’s dad, was visiting North Korea with Japanese plant breeder Motoderu Kamo. Kamo gave the elder Kim one his begonia hybrids, which was subsequently named Begonia ‘Kimjongilia’ for Kim Jong Il’s 46th birthday. Kim was so taken with the begonia, that he declared begonias the National Flower of North Korea. After supplying Kim with more begonia genetics, Kim Jong Il began what would become the largest begonia breeding project in the world. According to Kees, Kim would fly over his begonia fields in his helicopter and make his final selections from the air. At the time of Kim Jung Il’s death, there were sprawling greenhouse complexes all across North Korea, all for the purpose of housing Kim’s massive begonia collection. For international begonia shows, Kim would fly his prize begonia hybrids to the show with one person holding each begonia in the back of a cargo plane, to keep from damaging the plants. Also, according to Kees, Kim’s head begonia breeder became so renowned internationally, that Kim had him killed for upstaging the Dear Leader. As Dave Barry liked to say...I am not making this up!"
No comments.
Saturday, December 17th, 2011
9:53 pm
MIssing Spring...

Like the sound treck, too.
Tuesday, May 17th, 2011
2:21 pm
The Curse of the Golden Flower. 2006, Recomended
I talked  with Nohra an Alice about how beautifully the film was done, but couldn't remember the exact tiltle.

"The Curse of the Golden Flower" - absolutely spectacular and extremely engaging - quite nice for entertainment.

The particular mum the Empress kept embroidering I once bought in Safeway -  under the name "Chinese Mum", just one flower in a little pot, The regal flower  sparkled with gold dusting - it was a Halloween season... I planted it in the garden and it survived winter. 

Here are two descendants of the mum arranged simply with winter jasmine branches.  Porcellain compote by Angela Fina.
Friday, April 8th, 2011
3:29 pm
Ikenobo Exhibition at Brookside Gardens 2011

Baltimore Group and Metro Washington D.C. Chapter set up the 4th  annual spring Ikenobo exhibition at Brookside Gardens Visitor's Center On March 26-27, 2011.

As we know, pictures do not always complement the beauty of Ikebana arrangements. But they inform on what was happening. Imagination helps a little, too.


Here is an atrium arrangement. "A Tribute to Japan" The idea was to use sacura with pine, considering the Japanese symbolism, attributed to sacura - fleeting life of heroes and in general... But the forced branches had been gone right before the day of placement, creating a lot of frustration. They were substituted by magnolia. We deliberately restrained from something bright and showy.

Read more...Collapse )



Wednesday, March 23rd, 2011
3:24 pm
Children of the year 1896. Mostly by Auguste and Louis Lumiere

Those children are all gone to Eternity...
But they were, they lived! They lived...
Sunday, March 13th, 2011
7:51 pm
Thinking of Japan and its people...

A massive 8.9/9.0 magnitude earthquake hit the Pacific Ocean nearby Northeastern Japan at around 2:46pm on March 11 (JST) causing damage with blackouts, fire and tsunami.

Read more...Collapse )
God help Japanese people to overcome this cruel, terrible devastation and irreplacable losses!
Friday, March 4th, 2011
7:04 pm
Magnolia Shoka Shimputai

Reiko left this pink magnolia branch at the last workshop. You know how it happens with this kind of magnolia - it's closed in the mornig and by the evening it is all wide open and twice as less attractive.

A bud, an unticipation of it opening is one of the thrills of Ikenobo Ikebana.

Alice used this branch in a  Shoka Shimputai with an orange orchid. 
Purple and yellow are complimentary colors. Ours are kind of muted: purple - with a lot of gray in it, and yellow with a lot of red... Looks pretty - cheerful, but in a subtle way.

Materials: magnolia, orchid, canna leaf.
6:37 pm
Sakura. Shoka Shofutai
Silver Lining

Shoka Shofutai arranged by Nohra.

The last ice storm did a number on one of our old cherries - the top was split vertically, and almost a quarter of the tree was gone. That was hard to take, but nothing could be done, - we removed the whole top. Not only our tree suffered - Ursula's big black Japanese pine lost 3/4 of its mass. It happened all over the area. While driving, a lot of broken and hanging limbs could be seen along the roads.

 I forced a lot of my sakura branches, and we use them freely.

Here is an Isshu-ike Shoka Shofutai arranged by Nohra. This Shoka is an advanced one - it has Nagashi Shin. The main branch is flowing. Splendid! According to Ikenobo the only way one can arrange cherry classically is with pine or - in  Isshu-ike style.
Friday, February 25th, 2011
4:30 pm
We don't live this close to nature, but other people do, and amazing things happen to them. Becky the BearMom is a wonderful person - she is absolutely brave and fun to listen to. Her photografy is excellent, too.

"How did I really know that Goldilocks somehow met her unfortunate demise? Because her 4 cubs bawled their heads off for 3 days in the top of an oak tree outside my living room window. I'm ashamed to say that I closed the windows and took my hearing aids out because the contant squealing and bawling was driving me nuts! Actually I've never heard such a desperate sound from a living thing in my life.After much guilt, I did what any person who appreciates wildlife would do. I called the appropriate wildlife authorities. Here are their responses (organization names withheld)
1. "We can destroy them if they are an annoyance." (me: WHAT THE HELL!!!!????)
2. "We can hand raise them to adulthood but their chances of surving on their own after we release them is minimal." (me: HOW MUCH IS MINIMAL?)
3. "We can contain them in captivity, but only 50% will survive." (me: UM...AH....50% OF 4 CUBS IS 2; THAT MEANS 1/2 OF THE LITTER WILL DIE. CAPTIVITY? FOREVER?)
I finally got a hold of place that does research on black backs in the wild (but not rescue). With their information, I went from bear photographer to "bear mom."Read on.

Friday, February 18th, 2011
7:24 pm
Spring Juika

This is a little Juika in a funky ceramic container by Valeria. It's made of the leftover materials from my last teaching session. Cherry, hyasinths, tulips, cyclamen.
7:05 pm

Not long time ago I discussed with Fay how rewarding the amaryllis was as a house plant, and here "White Swan" really rewarded me with 4 stems. I just love it ana visit it every morning, hanging around with my first cup of coffee...
The other side of the plant is that after blooming its leaves flop down and the whole thing is not such beautiful look all the way to the fall. Then the leaves are cut and the pots removed from the site all together. In late December I start bringing them in one after another.

At the end of 2010 Rosalie brought Amaryllises as New Year giftes to Mrs. Furukawa's workshop. By this she actualy started holiday mood for me. They were white, pink and red, and everybody had to choose a box. I certainly chose a white one. It wasn't a big bulb and there were only 3 flowers on a stalk, but they were humongous and absolutely gorgeous.Thank you, Rosalie, so very much!
It's exact name is "Athene". I cannot wait to see how it performs next year. Highly recommended.
5:01 pm

Free style by Alice. Willow and tulips.
Thursday, February 17th, 2011
4:53 pm
Wednesday, February 16th, 2011
11:18 pm
Free style

Narine used willow with Dutch irises in Japanese ceramic vase from  late 1960th.
11:06 pm
Free style

Nohra tried her new container today. She bought it yesterday at the general workshop ginza.
Luckily I bought purple tulips for the class... Japanese Fantail Willow (Salix sachalinensis 'Sekka') and aspidistra leaves were used, too.
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