Observed big-time how folks put their displays together. Bonsai are always displayed in show on some sort of "stand". It could be as simple as a bamboo mat to a wooden stand up to a little miniature room! You can also use a stone, or a wood slab or such.
My first workshop was on putting together kusamono. What's that? It is a little "companion planting" that is displayed with a bonsai. Its size is in ratio to the size of the bonsai - so they can be very tiny. The name means literally "grass thing". Ikebana - the Japanese floral arranging - is very similar in feel, except kusamono uses living plants and can last several years or longer (tho you will have to redo it as the plants grow). Tho normally you use 3 plants, tho there are some that have only one plant. It can be a bowl of moss (very pretty). Kusamono can be planted in little tiny pots, or on driftwood pieces, or on stones with pockets and so on.
The other workshop was done by Roy Nagatoshi - a 2nd generation bonsai Master. He makes it look easy! This workshop was "bring your own tree" and he helped each person with whatever they needed. I had a tree I'd just gotten and learned quite a bit with his help.
It was so much fun! I can't wait til next year. And by then I'll have something to put in the show too!
Bonsai Master Roy Nagatoshi instructs a class as Mike B. listens.
Barbara B with her table of beautiful bonsai pots.