Iker Pottery Works and Bonsai


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Batavia, Ohio
My name is Chuck Iker. I'd like to introduce myself and my work. I have been a functional and artistic potter for well over 20 years and have been producing hand thrown Bonsai pots for local clients for over 10. Over the years I have picked up quite a few clients around the country by word of mouth and within the last few years have starting selling my pots over the internet. I produce only hand thrown individual work. Nothing is molded, nothing is cast. My work is primarily wheel thrown round and oval pots. I do some handbuilding of squares and primitive work.

very nice pots!!! But I'm still in "buy expensive tree/cheap pots" stage =)

reminds me of the work of one of our local potters - Gary wood.

Anyway - you're doing a great job!
Thank you very much, I understand fully, I've been on both sides of that coin.

C. I.
Chuck - nice looking stuff. Hope things go well for you on eBay, nice to see some good looking stuff there. Do you do custom orders?

Welcome to BonsaiNut too!
I do, for many years that's all I did. I find a bit more freedom in making what I like and finding buyers but I am always willing to do commission work. This time of year I'm pretty backed up on custom stuff. Come spring, I get a lot of "need it yesterday" work. But that's fine, I enjoy what I do and I find it very rewarding to match a pot to someone's Bonsai. I wish I had some of the pieces that I have made pots for. My personal Bonsai collection is modest and relatively young. Through my pottery I have developed some good mentoring relationships with some very knowledgable Bonsai enthusiasts.
I just bought my first actual pots, just some cheap Korean mica ones. You're pretty much in the same zone as I, how do your pots deal with our winters? Or is it more a matter of pot design?
Pots in Winter

Pot design plays a big role and so does how much water and what type of soil you use. A pot that tapers toward the top that has a lot of water in it will break. I use high fired stoneware. A good stoneware clay will absorb 2-4% water. A cheap poorly formulated or improperly fired stoneware can go as high as 10 - 15%. An earthenware pot will absorb as much as 40%. A good high fire clay will make a difference.

I overwinter my pots outside under a bench. I've never had one break but I know what it takes to break one. Too much water is bad for the pot and the plant.

If you are going to overwinter outside in a cold climate stay with a pot that tapers from bottom to top and no turn in on the rim. They're not always the most striking but they do overwinter well. And of course watch your watering. I keep mine covered and provide the water myself. Counting on rain is not a good idea.

I'd imagine you're as happy to see a break in winter as I am.

I have close my Ebay store and have opened my own Web Site. My new address is www.ikerbonsaipottery.com. I have met some great folks through this site. I would hope that you stop by and take a look.

Chuck Iker
Iker Bonsai Pottery
Nice site Chuck! I like what you are doing, nice pots! I even left a comment.

I am sure we will be doing business in the future...

Thanks, Jason
dam the link is not working for me
I currently have 3 pots from Chuck. Love them! And Chuck, I might be able to salvage the one that broke. I've been doing my version of CSI forensics in tryin to piece together all the tiny pieces like a puzzle before attempting to glue them. If this works it can still be a show quality pot as long as no one looks at its bottom ;)
Here are my Iker pots. Even though I busted the bottom on the green one it is still my fav by far. :D


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Busted Pots - Let's see what we can do

Hey Jason,

For some reason I can't get the links to my pots you posted. By the way, thanks for that. What say you send me a picture or the number of that pot you broke. I can't really claim a lifetime warranty but I'd sure like to get that pot replaced for you. I'll throw you a new one in the next batch but I need to see what it looks like. I couldn't possibly let you live with a broken pot after your nice comments. Send me the information to ikerbosaipottery@gmail.com.

I've ordered several pots from Mr. Iker, and have been very pleased with them all. He runs a first class business and has outstanding customer service. I'd definitely buy from him again.
Mr. Iker I especially like the rustic tray 14 inch with the unglazed rough finish. It would look beautiful on a root over rock planting I have. Do you keep this style on hand or are they one of kind. The reason I ask is that my plant will not be ready for a pot for another year and I do not want to buy a pot and have to protect it for a year without a plant in it. I forgot to get the pot number while browsing your site, I will try to save the picture so I can reference it to you when I am ready to purchase it. These are as fine looking Bonsai pots as I have seen anywhere, you are an artist. I am from Lebanon Ohio and work in your area frequently as I am a self employed contractor and had no idea you were there!

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