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John L. Creech

Born 1920 in Wonsokit, Rhode Island, USA. Studied horticulture at the University of Rhode Island and graduated in 1941. He was taken prisoner in World War II and sent to a camp in Poland (1943-1945), and his activity as a gardener at that time is talked about. He received his master's degree from the University of Massachusetts in 1947 after the war and his doctorate in 1953 (University of Maryland). After that, he joined the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) as a gardening expert, and subsequently served as the third director of the US National Arboretum (1973-1980). During this time, he was involved in 10 plant exploration trips (including 6 in Japan) starting in 1955, and made efforts to introduce ornamental and useful plants to the United States. On the other hand, on the occasion of the 200th anniversary of the founding of the United States (1976), he struggled to realize the donation of 53 bonsai masterpieces from Japan, including the Imperial family, and laid the foundation for the establishment of the National Museum of Bonsai Bonsai later. He has a great deal of interest in Japanese azaleas and is known as the introducer of Hirado azaleas to the United States. Retired in North Carolina in 2009.

[Main work]

The history of the above-mentioned donation of bonsai was described in his last small book, "The Bonsai Saga: The Story of Bonsai" (2001). In addition to many specialized papers and plant exploration research reports, the English translation of Ito Ibei Sannosuke's "Kinshu Pillow" (translated by Kato Kato, 1984) and Alice M. Coats "Garden Shrubs and their Histories" In the 1992 edition of, I gave explanations and notes from a horticultural point of view.


AHS Liberty Hyde Bailey Award (1989), RHS Gold Veitch Memorial Medal (1991), etc. In 1988, he was commended as a "Kurume City Meritorious Person".

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