Here we go!
This is my first visit to the Jim Smith exhibit at Heathcote Gardens down in Ft Pierce Fl. This post will be mostly pics (huge collective sigh from the audience). I will add some pithy or enlightened comments here or there. Also, some people ask why I usually put the description of the photos before the pic instead of underneath. Because this is a blog and you scroll down from top to bottom.
Like this: the first tree is a ficus benjamina (weeping fig), much reviled amongst many bonsai enthusiasts.
As you see, I tend to surround the photo with text. I’m am also going to, for the first time, not put full size pics up. There are over 140 pics to follow, do the math, the post will be a huge data hog otherwise. And I’m splitting the post into two parts. As to that, onward!
Texas ebony. Used to be called pithecellobium flexicaule, the modern name is ebanopsis ebano.
Ficus salicaria, willow leaf fig
You’ll notice the name tags on some say salicifolia or nerifolia. This one says salicania for some reason. Probably a typo.
Another willow leaf.
Breaking it up, ficus natelensis, natal fig.
A tall retusa.
Here’s a bougainvillea.
Here’s a ficus microcarpa “green island”.
Notice the rounded leaves and the singular trunk.
The next tree is too often confused with the green island. It’s ficus microcarpa “green mound”.
The next tree is one of the best trees here.
My hand for scale.
The next tree is a Florida native. Simpson stopper (Myrcianthes fragrans, it used to a eugenia but they’ve renamed it, ignore the nameplate)
An infographic. In case you needed to know.
Another dwarf Jade.
A biiiig salicaria. With Seth.
Seth Nelson is the curator at the collection. I know what you’re thinking, most of the trees are older than him. He was born in 1992. But that’s the way it should be. Bonsai should be passed on and shared with generations.
Anyway, Seth is looking very pirate-ish with those short pants. What do you think?
Next tree is, you guessed it, a willow leaf.
Both of those above were grown from sawn off root balls. Go here to read about how that works.
The next tree is a donation from a friend, Joe Winkler, in memorium for his lost girlfriend.
The next tree is a guest tree it seems.
Next is a unique tree, a baobob.
Next we have two different hackberries in the same pot.
Two more willow leaf
Next is a ficus microcarpa that the Taiwanese call something like “kinman”. When Jim Smith first heard it he though he heard “kingman”. So that’s what Floridians called it for many years. I’ve seen where people call it “Kidman” or “kenman”.
The problem is that we are trying to phoenetically transcribe a Chinese word into English. For example: is it Mao Tse Tung or Mao Zedong? Seth takes it personally when he sees it spelled differently than he wants.
Next is a green island ficus.
A nea buxifolia, probably one of the first in Florida from Puerto Rico.
A Surinam cherry. With fruit!
Two more salicarias
I like the next one, bursera simaruba, the gumbo limbo tree.
You can tell that Jim really liked the willow leaf. Here’s another root clump.
The next is an enigma, wrapped in a puzzle, hidden in a maze.
Jim Smith called it ficus exotica because he couldn’t find a name for it. But there isn’t a “ficus exotica” that exists except as a variety of ficus Benjamina. And this isn’t it. If you can figure it out, I’ll give you a wooden nickel.
Now we have….yup, two more willow leaf.
And a cultivar of willowleaf that Jim called “89”It has a larger leaf than regular salicaria. It’s a sport that occurred after the historic freezes of, you guessed it, 1989, when it froze in Miami.
Guess this one?
The next tree is a wrightia religiosa, they call it the water jasmine.
This is another nice microcarpa.