Profile - Lindsay Farr

Lindsay Farr preparing heritage Australian bonsai pot moulds from "Ellis ceramics"

Lindsay Farr began dabbling in bonsai in early childhood. His first real collection was realized as a 13 year old when he mixed bonsai with Rhododendron collecting. His interest in bonsai diminished briefly when he became voluntary Aussie Motown rep with the duty of persuading Australian Radio to play the Motown hits. By the late sixties he became a saxophone player touring with numerous outfits. His first band "The News" record was recognised in the Greatest Aussie hits of the sixties book. Then,Sydney Jazz/Rock fusion pioneers Heart'N'soul and the iconic Australian Rock band Daddy Cool.

In the seventies, he moved to Boston to complete the Jazz Arranging and Composition program At Berklee College of Music. During this time he performed with numerous acts including Harold Melvin and the Bluenotes with Teddy Pendergrass and the Delistics as he maintained a rooftop garden at his Beacon street apartment with several small collected pines which he grew in pots made by his future wife Marietta.

On his return to Melbourne in the late 70's he worked a few years in radio, television and recording studios whilst planting trees in the field to prepare for his childhood dream of a Bonsai Farm. The Bonsai Farm began in Lindsay and Marietta's small suburban backyard but soon moved to a larger Nursery at Mt Dandenong around 50 klm from Melbourne.

He began teaching in the early eighties. For a decade, he taught bonsai at numerous campuses including TAFE the Chinese Museum and The Council of Adult Education. He later formed his own school The Bonsai Academy of Australia.

During the early years of Bonsai Farm, they pioneered new bonsai markets including Major retailers, Supermarkets and Hardware Giants. They soon became disillusioned by this mass marketing and restructured to a retail garden by the late eighties. During this period Lindsay published his free tabloid newspaper BONSAI/PENJING NEWS. Hundreds of thousands of copies were distributed with requests received from many foreign countries. Lindsay's first TV bonsai segment was with Aussie television producer Craig Campbell (Rove) for a Karate Kid cross promotion on the Saturday morning Cartoon Company program on the Nine Network. Over the following years he presented bonsai on many TV programs in Australia and was regular Bonsai presenter on The international cable TV show YIN, YANG and YOU.

During the late 90's Lindsay and Marietta moved the Nursery back to larger premises in Hawthorn 4klm from the centre of Melbourne.

In 2000, along with Ugo Mantelli he co-produced and presented his 13 episode "The Way of Bonsai" for Foxtel's Lifestyle channel.

The popular "Lindsay Farr's WorldOfBonsai" is the first online Bonsai video series from his website