About Bishopsford

The magic of bonsai at Bishopsford has not only endured, but has developed significantly over the past 50 years. Comments frequently made; "A labour of love and food for the soul"

The nurturing of these little wonders of nature has become a passion and way of life and, for us is certainly food for the soul.

Sharing knowledge and experience and watching new bonsai growers develop is an added joy.

Hopefully a stroll amongst the trees will fill you with a sense of peace and tranquility.

So if you are looking for a big selection of Bonsai trees, pots, tools, wire, soil, fertiliser, pesticides, starter trees, rocks, gravel, mesh and all other Bonsai requirements in Cape Town why not pay us a visit. 

Bishopsford is owned by Gail Theron who trained as a radiographer, but gave up her professional practice because of her love of bonsai which occupied her time fully.  She had two years training as a nurseryman at a very large Garden centre in Cape Town in 1979 and 1980.  As bonsai, and Oriental arts had already been her and her husband Lionel’s interest for many years they decided to expand their own nursery, and purchased seven acres in the delightful Hout Bay valley in order to achieve this ambition.  The nursery in Hout Bay was established in 1980 and grew from strength to strength.

Gail and Lionel have travelled extensively in Asia, namely, China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Singapore, Indonesia, Thailand, Malaysia and Cambodia in their quest for knowledge and enjoyment of anything Oriental.  They have attended many National and International Conventions.

Gail has been growing bonsai since 1969 and was mainly self-taught. She was a committee member of Cape Bonsai Kai for approximately 34 years, holding the post of Technical Chairman for many years. She is an honorary life member of Cape Bonsai Kai and Oyama Bonsai Kai.  She has presented a large number of talks, participated in numerous exhibitions and been invited to judge bonsai at shows.  In 2014 the South African Bonsai Association honoured her with a Lifetime Achievement Award.  Her dedication and talents are also internationally recognised.  Her bonsai collection consists of many beautiful award winning trees including one which was named; “East Cloud” by John Naka.

In 1970 there was very little information or contact with bonsai from other parts of the world and Gail embarked on the plan to bring visiting Masters to this country.  She was involved in the visits of many internationally renowned Masters.  These include John Naka, Ben Oki, Melba Tucker, Vaughn Banting, Dorothy and Debra Koreshoff, and more recently for CBK’s 30thanniversary Mr I C Sue and Cheng Kung Cheng and most recently Budi Sulistyo.  

In 2015 Gail and Lionel had the opportunity to move to a beautiful spot in Constantia with the joy of having their daughter, Debbie, who has been involved in bonsai for some years joining them.    

Her Bishopsford Bonsai Nursery is well visited by many bonsai enthusiasts from all over the world and gets many compliments from visitors. 

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