Through Rajendran of PLR nursery we got introduced to another interesting Bonsai passionate, Udhay. We had a chance to meet him at his residence at Pallikaranai. His residence is away from the busy and polluted Chennai. Though it was a hot and humid day, it was a pleasant and peaceful experience at his residence.
He runs a reality business and is a flat promoter by profession- a very busy personality who makes sure to spend a substantial time everyday for Bonsais. He is a nature loving and good hearted person. He insists and encourages every one he meets to grow at least one tree in their house or at least on their street. He is so passionate towards Bonsai and has a keen desire to spread the form of Bonsai-art. He was willing to share his knowledge that he acquired till date to anyone who should only have true interest and passion to learn. We came to know from a different source that a carpenter got inspired from Udhay’s Bonsais, and with Udhay’s guidance he has couple of Bonsais of his own.
What made you a Bonsai passionate?
I had a deep love for plants and trees from my school days. My school was in Chennai IIT campus which got me closer to the nature. I spend most of my time admiring the trees and its shapes. One day I got introduced to Bonsai at PLR nursery and I immediately fell in love with it. I decided to learn the art of Bonsai and got aligned to this wonderful passion.
Who is your Bonsai guru?
My first trainer was Ravindharan – Nagarkovil. One of my greatest inspirations was Ponnuswami – Shakti sugars, and I continued to improve my Bonsai skills from this wonderful person.
What will be your first message to beginners?
Select the right plants – It is more about the shape and not the age.
According to you what are the common mistakes that beginner would tend to make?
They tend to think all small and old trees are Bonsai. They have to learn the proper definition of Bonsai before they get in to the Bonsai world. Also, understand that all old looking trees are not really old. People can tweak even a young plant to look that way for commercial values. Secondly, most of the beginners miss to feed the trees properly and they tend to kill or weaken them. Finally, most of them miss the important point of leaf and tree proportion. They will be successful in maintaining the size of the tree, but will miss to retain the size of the leaf to trees’ proportion.
What is your favorite Bonsai material?
I like the Banyan at ideal height 1.5 – 2 feet, with fruits – you can die for it.
What is your favorite style?
Informal upright and slating. Style like cascade will look good but where is the tree?
If you have to give one most important tip to the beginner what will that be?
Work with natural style of the tree that it can easily adapt. Work on the branches and you will automatically get the canapé.
Do you think clubs can promote this art?
Sure, Bonsai clubs are mostly non profitable organizations that can give practice to an individual and also sets a stage to showcase the individual’s art.
What is the difference between good Bonsai and Masterpiece?
Masterpiece means – Good shape, age, canapé, branches, look… but good Bonsai is just a healthy fully grown small tree.
If you have a option to spend rest of your life with a bonsai master, whom do you want to be with?
Without doubts I would select John Naka – father of modern Bonsai