Banzai! Be ruthless, bonsai master urges workshop

2012-11-12 00:00

DURBAN Bonsai master Shaun Murphy has urged Zululand bonsai enthusiasts not to be afraid and to be “ruthless” when attempting to style and train their bonsais.

Murphy was speaking at a workshop, hosted at the National Sea Rescue Institute base at Richards Bay on Saturday, to which he had been invited by the Zululand Bonsai Society.

Zululand Bonsai Society chairperson Barry Stofberg said Murphy, a member of the Durban Bonsai Society, was “fascinating to watch” in a workshop that began at 9 am and finished late in the evening.

“The Zululand society, which is a bit starved for talent as most of us are beginners, were so enthralled to have someone of Shaun’s pedigree that time just flew by,” said Stofberg.

Murphy, considered a Bonsai master and nicknamed “Mr Miyagi” after a character in the Karate Kid movies, has more than 1 500 bonsais and over 35 years of experience.

He travels the country giving workshops.

“I specialise in figs because I started with them and they grow well in Durban, but I work with a vast amount of species,” Murphy said.

“The workshop held in Zululand was about styling and training.

“I maintain that with bonsai you need to be ruthless,” said Murphy.

The Zululand Bonsai Society meets every second Saturday of the month and is open to the public.

For more information, visit or call Stofberg at 083 324 9392.

Members pay an annual fee of R150. The society is registered with the South African Bonsai Society.


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