Sunday, 23 August 2015

UK and Europe Autumn styling competition

After watching the excellent online styling competition run in the USA via the facebook group Bonsai Odyssey I decided to source some good quality material that was as even and fair as possible and run a similar thing here for UK and European bonsai lovers.

The material

Now I've taken delivery of just over 20 Japanese imported Itoigawa junipers - all with nice curled and twisted trunks and with a lot of quality foliage nice and close to the trunk, plus a summer of extension growth to offer more styling options. These are super healthy, well fed trees that have great chunky trunks and I hand picked every tree to be as equal as you can with a living plant.


How it Works

We will supply by post a material tree to all contestants -  they will all be sent out on the same day by courier. We will send to UK, Ireland and Europe *

Trees will be numbered, contestant names will go in a hat and I will pick up a tree, my wife will draw a name - I can't think of a fairer way to do it

The styling contest will run for one month so nobody needs to rush the job or worry if they are busy one weekend. I have waited until Autumn as junipers are better off not styled in summer.

The contest is open to all people of all bonsai experience.

The results will be judged based on photographs of the styled trees and will consider the styling, technique and overall image. Pictures from front, side, back and above will be needed to judge the tree to give the best impression of the 3 dimensional tree the contestant has created - we want to promote good all round bonsai rather than a flat tree created just for the camera.

There will be a group of judges invited to pick the winners - pictures will be sent to them as numbered anonymous files - I will co-ordinate the contest, organise the picture files etc and therefore not be one of the judges as I'll know who has styled each tree

The judges decision is final and will be based on the pictures supplied - ONLY the tree will be judged - If you chose to repot them (not required or recommended) the pot, stand, display etc will not count towards the judging process.

When ?
Trees will be sent out 28th/29th Sept
Styling will be all of October
Pictures must be in by 1st November at latest - judging will be completed within 1 week from closing date

How much will it cost ?
Entry costs £80.00 and included the tree and UK delivery charges
* European contestants - due to increased delivery charges the fee is £90.00.

We are happy to send to all European Union countries -if you are from other international countries please check with me first if I can send you tree material - many will not officially allow shipment of bonsai although these trees have just cleared defra QT and have tested free from disease, pathogens, soil pests etc.

Payments by paypal to, or by credit/debit card over the phone 07855 300789 or by online bank transfer to Aqualabs business account - details on request

To make the contest work we need 10 or more people to enter - if entries fall short entry money will be refunded in full, or we can offer the option of sending out the trees anyway with a partial refund.

What do you win?

For 10-14 contestants
1st prize £100 to spend on any of our stock - Bonsai@16 has 210 trees in stock right now, copper wire, Aluminium wire, Tibolar SR, Biogold, Naruko, Fish Emulsion, Lime sulphur, You can chose prizes from the ebay shop, in person, or over the phone/by email or collect in person at the Bonsai Europa15 event in Bury.
2nd prize £50 to spend as above

for 15+ contestants
1st £120 to spend as above
2nd £60 to spend as above
3rd £30 to spend as above

Contest is limited to the number of stock trees - 21 in total

Results and further questions prior to the contest will be via the online facebook threads, or specific questions BEFORE the contest can be emailed or sent via messenger

Cheers for reading and good luck

Grown up junipers on the sales bench


  1. Great idea! What is the preferred method to register? Via email to or by phone?


    1. cheers - registration can be email or phone - 07855 300789.. entry can be paid by paypal to the email address, or a card over the phone. we are sending trees out this week now I'm back from a quick break away last week

    2. I did not get back to you and have completely forgotten that I have had sent you an email, but you haven't replied. It's most likely too late to still register, isn't it? Could you possibly check your email (e.g. spam folder in case the email was spam false positive)? I know about at least one other guy that haven't got a reply from you :(


    3. Lacike.......if you read the reply I made above to your inquiry you will see it was dated 28 th September! It gives my personal number and how to pay to enter the competition. I think you needed to check to see if your original question had been answered before asking again maybe!? You may still enter if you wish, there is plenty of time to complete the styling by the end of the month. The last person to enter collected thier tree from the show on Sunday. Just call me on the number I gave out before if you want to enter. Thanks Marcus

  2. Marcus... if you read your emails, you will see an email from me dated 20th of September! Your comment says registration can be done via email (which I did) or by phone. I had no reply to my email for 3 days so I posted a question here and was checking for reply for 3 additional days. Then I've forgotten to check the replies and stopped doing so until October 9th, when a friend of mine asked me if I was attending as well. I found your reply date 28th September.

    The reason I asked again about the registration was very simple:
    1. I thought the deadline was the date when you sent out the trees - my mistake
    2. I thought that you could reply to the email I mentioned and confirm the registration :-)

    Anyway, If you prefer registration via phone I'll gladly do so and give you a call ;-)

    Thanks and "hear ya"

    1. good morning Lacike - ive just used the very useful search of my email inbox, spam, trash etc and unfortunately there are no emails from you received on or around 20/09 -( there are no styling related comp emails from that day) so something went missing in the process by the look - usually if I send a semi important email and get no response I start off by resending it in case the recipient never got it...anyway, enough of this - yes you can enter if you wish, there are trees available, plenty of time to style them and you can enter by email as you tried to before, or by phone - or just by attaching a note to the paypal payment as 75% of the entrants did - this certainly seemed a very simple way to go. cheers Marcus - 07855 300789