Page 2439 - Week 08 - Thursday, 6 June 2013

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Canberra Bonsai Society

MR COE (Ginninderra) (4.51): Mr Assistant Speaker, I rise tonight to speak about the Canberra Bonsai Society. The society was established in 1975 to enhance the knowledge and practice of Bonsai by bringing together people with an interest in the art. The founders of the society had previously been meeting on an informal basis for some years, and since 1975 membership of the society has grown to 850. The Canberra Bonsai Society is a member of the Association of Australian Bonsai Clubs and Bonsai Clubs International, and members regularly attend national and international bonsai conventions to share their expertise and learn from others.

Members of the society meet once a month to view presentations and demonstrations and help other members with their bonsai. The monthly meetings are a good opportunity for new members and other people who are interested in bonsai to find out more. The society provides support to its members through its resource library, monthly newsletters and workshops.

Members of the Canberra Bonsai Society participate in various community activities including Floriade and the Australian native trees as bonsai exhibition at the Australian National Botanic Gardens. The society also organises bus trips and field trips for members to visit bonsai nurseries and collect wild trees.

Last month I was privileged to attend the Bonsai Society’s bonsai exhibition at Rydges Lakeside, which was held as part of the 26th Association of Australian Bonsai Clubs convention. The convention theme was the Australian journey and focused on history of bonsai in Australia. I was interested to hear about the way in which native Australian plants are now being used in bonsai and the traditions which have been inherited from China and Japan. I was very warmly welcomed by members at the convention, and I thank them for the time they spent telling me about their practice. Members I spoke to were full of praise for the inclusive way senior members of the society share information and knowledge with the less experienced members.

For more information about bonsai in Canberra and the Canberra Bonsai Society, I urge all members to visit their website at

Mr John Notaras—death

MR SMYTH (Brindabella) (4.53): I rise in the house to honour John Harry Notaras who was buried from St Nicholas Orthodox Church at Kingston on Monday this week. I know that you also attended, Mr Assistant Speaker Doszpot, and the family was grateful for that.

One can say many words about Harry but there is a page here in the booklet that was distributed at the service and I think it is probably best just to read the family’s view of their beloved John. John was born into one of Canberra’s earliest Greek Australian families, his father Harry having migrated here in 1910 at the age of 13.

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