THE podcast thread

…Enthralled. I tried to find a single word that best described how I felt about the episode with Tom Roberts. If you enjoyed the Telperion Farms episode then you’ll love this one. Tom’s approach is more akin to how I envision I would approach a field growing effort. I typcially listen to episodes at 1.5x to 2x speed. I listened to this one a normal speed and immediately started it over again.

Some key takeaways for me:

  • Do what works for you. We keep saying there are no rules in bonsai and then immediately tell ppl that they shouldn’t be doing X at Y part of the year because of Z. A friend of mine prunes in the middle of summer. Why? Because he’s a school teacher and summer is when he’s most free to do those operations. Tom is sowing seeds in summer. Crazy!

  • Use Mirai as a foundation, not as a crutch. This feeling has slowly been creeping in for me. I absolutely would not be where I am (which really is just at the beginning) without Mirai. However, I recognize that I can’t rely on Mirai. I can’t be afraid to do something unless I submit a tree on a Monday and hope to get feedback that Friday…if I’m lucky. It’s usually the following Monday. Being in a completely different zone I’m usually not even working on the same species that is often prevalent at Mirai. It behooves me to take the lessons learned and apply them to my practice.

I could go on and on about this episode. Something about it really spoke to me. We need more ppl like Tom in the world.


The recent Beginner Series podcast with @Eve and @Josh is pretty fun. The episode touches on a lot of other topics and oddly enough not very much of it is about the beginner series itself. It’s a fun episode though and very much worth a listen.

Josh touched on a design idea that I’ve always wanted to toy with. That being the way a tree looks when humans come through to cut branches for power lines. Replacement for grass? Idk, it’s hard to visualize a suburban neighborhood without lawns.

Eve touched on the lack of women in bonsai. I won’t/can’t comment on that since I’m a dude, but I can kind of relate as a minority in bonsai. When I search YouTube I only find one person that looks like me from a complexion standpoint. I saw no one that looked like me at the few bonsai related events I’ve been to. It just kind of solidifies my feeling of being on an island as there’s very little bonsai activity around me. Thankfully the awesome Mirai community provides a sense of kinship and camaraderie.


I really enjoyed the latest podcast about PBMs latest exhibit World War Bonsai (which I still hope to see this year). Great talk by Eve, Aarin, and Nancy Ukai about the exhibit and the incarceration of Japanese Americans during World War 2. It is a hugely important thing to remember what happened and the ripple effect it still has in modern American bonsai culture. Hope everyone takes the time to listen.


They had a nice presentation about it in their Branch Out video.

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Yeah good stuff. I watched it when it first came out.

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I just heard the podcast and have been following the PBM exhibit since set up. The podcast explains so much about the history of bonsai in America and I think in west coast bonsai in particular. I have heard snippets of this history from older club members and in that vein can confirm much of what is discussed.

I have also heard the family stories of my wife’s parents who were teenagers in the camps. That experience is still very much with us today. It seems important to understand what happened and what was the long term response to our society.

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Yeah my grandparents and greatgrandparents were in the camps, but a lot of it wasn’t really talked about. I still learn a lot from the historians who study this.

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Damn, that’s…difficult. Sorry man.

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Sorry for the slight tangent in topic, but since this is THE podcast thread, I figured it’s a good place to ask.

Has anyone created a curated list of the best Asymmetry podcasts anywhere? I couldn’t find anything through search.