The private bonsai collection of Samuel Thompson

At the recent Australian bonsai event, I was headlining with Marija Hajdic there was time for an evening visit after the workshops were done during the day. Despite having a narrow time slot and being busy all day we managed to force through a visit to Sam’s garden. Sam is a very kind and talented bonsai artist so we managed to squeeze that in after work.

Full gallery at the end of this post

Sam Thompson

The private bonsai collection of Samuel Thompson is cared for when he is not at work looking after the national Bonsai & Penjing collection at Canberra National Arboretum. The private bonsai collection is situated not so far from the workplace, and Sam still looking for a permanent residence to make a nice set-up. Renting a house doesn’t make it easy to set up a bonsai garden display, so everything is purely arranged to take care of the bonsai until later.

I have a personal craving for visiting other artists’ bonsai collections and gardens. A huge part of bonsai is personal friendships and the pure interest in seeing what other people do. The interest in bonsai isn’t just the quality of the bonsai but how we live with bonsai at home in everyday life.

The bonsai collection has varied native species in different sizes, but mostly middle-sized trees. Sam is very dedicated and shows his skills through his work. Both at the arboretum and at the collection.

The fun of bonsai

The good (or maybe not good) sense of humour adds to the feeling of a good friendship. We did laugh a lot as well as looking more seriously at each tree.

Morten Albek, Samuel Thompson and Marija Hajdik.

The native species are interesting and in general, I hope more people will find it worthwhile growing bonsai from their native sources adding more interest to bonsai. Especially Shohin bonsai would benefit from this approach to avoid the usual kind of trees being repeated too much. A good blend of imported species with native will be the best possible variation.

It’s autumn in Australia and Canberra trees begin slowly to change colours. Now I am back and ready for more spring in Europe.

New friendships added and bonsai life continues bringing joy.

Q&A Thursday

A quick reminder, that Thursday at 8 PM (UTC +2 – European summertime) the Live Q&A on Zoom. Be sure to update your Zoom app because new updates have been causing a bit of trouble for some member’s connections. If the latest Zoom update isn’t installed it might cause errors for you.

Also, use the access point through the page link installed to be sure you are on the right connection.


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