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JustinBoi
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Bought two new Bonsais.

Okay, so recently (aka couple of hours ago) I bought a Ficus Benjamina and some kind of juniper. Can anyone give me some advice of the type of watering/lighting situations these bonsais need? If so, Thank you.

Also, on recent posts I've talked about my Ginseng Ficus and Chinese Elm. Both are doing great, lots of blossoming from the branches that were bear. All thanks to the helpful gardeners here.

Hope you can help me,
Your faithful gardener -Justin

P.S.: Will post pictures of all 4 plants of mine soon. So you can comment on how they are doing and what I should do to make them even better! :)
"It's not just a 'hobby', it's a type of lifestyle."

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JustinBoi
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Took pictures just a few minutes ago.
They posed for the pictures. Hope you can help me out and tell me how I'm doing and maybe some tips?


[img]https://i1126.photobucket.com/albums/l612/Justin_Broughton/Newcameraphotos034-1.jpg[/img]
Roots of the Weeping Fig
[img]https://i1126.photobucket.com/albums/l612/Justin_Broughton/Newcameraphotos033-1.jpg[/img]
Picture of Weeping Fig
[img]https://i1126.photobucket.com/albums/l612/Justin_Broughton/Newcameraphotos032.jpg[/img]
Bottom of the Juniper
[img]https://i1126.photobucket.com/albums/l612/Justin_Broughton/Newcameraphotos030-1.jpg[/img]
Ginseng Ficus middle
[img]https://i1126.photobucket.com/albums/l612/Justin_Broughton/Newcameraphotos029-1.jpg[/img]
Roots of Chinese Elm
[img]https://i1126.photobucket.com/albums/l612/Justin_Broughton/Newcameraphotos028.jpg[/img]
Far away picture of Juniper
[img]https://i1126.photobucket.com/albums/l612/Justin_Broughton/Newcameraphotos025.jpg[/img]
Chinese Elm
[img]https://i1126.photobucket.com/albums/l612/Justin_Broughton/Newcameraphotos024.jpg[/img]
The Ginseng Ficus
"It's not just a 'hobby', it's a type of lifestyle."

linlaoboo
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Justin,

I like the movement on the Elm. However, the leaves are kind of thin. If it was my tree I'd try a soil change in Spring to a free draining bonsai mix. During the process, can assess the roots health.

I'd try cutting and propagating the ficuse. If you're in a tropical environment, they'll grow fast and be trained into the shape you want in less time than colder climates.
Last edited by linlaoboo on Sat Jan 01, 2011 6:07 pm, edited 1 time in total.
ficus, maple, elm, juniper, pine

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JustinBoi
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Which ficus? And ill be doing a lot to them in the spring. Also what should I do with the Green Mound Juniper?
"It's not just a 'hobby', it's a type of lifestyle."

linlaoboo
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I don't grow Junipers and the growing conditions are much different here in NJ.

Maybe you can review lots of Ficus bonsai pictures to give you some direction of where you like to take yours. Looks like the Benjamina with trunk fusion is potential candidate for trunk chop in the future to bring it more like a miniture bonsai but I'd wait and see to it that it's healthy enough 1st. I have the retusa type ficuses and green island and think they get better ramification than the ginseng type. Check out Jerry's site https://www.bonsaihunk.us/ficusforum/FriendsBonsai1.html and https://www.bonsaihunk.us/ficusforum/FicusForum.html. He's a ficus expert.
ficus, maple, elm, juniper, pine

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JustinBoi
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I need help with the Chinese Elm and the Green Mound Juniper and maybe the Weeping Fig but the Ginseng Ficus I'm gonna wait till spring then work on it. It has lots of blossoms, so when the time comes, I'll come back here and get suggestions. What should I do right this moment with all the rest of the bonsai plants?


-Justin
"It's not just a 'hobby', it's a type of lifestyle."

linlaoboo
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I need help with my C. elm too, where's is the bonsai god?
ficus, maple, elm, juniper, pine

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JustinBoi
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That would be Gnome. He knows practically everything about Bonsai. I'm jealous
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Gnome
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Justin,

Thanks for the vote of confidence but I am by no means an expert. I have been killing bonsai longer than you have been alive though. It's been said that dead trees are tuition one pays to learn bonsai and I can certainly attest to that. In my early years I could barely get anything through winter but by studying, practice and trial & error I hardly lose anything now. It just takes time and the desire to improve, even if it's only a little at a time.

Can't say I'm a fan of the braided Ficus, it's more of a novelty than a bonsai but there is no reaon you can't enjoy it for what it is. You can also use it to take cuttings from. Ficus grow pretty fast so you can get new ones going pretty quickly.

The Juniper stays outside, always. Never try to keep it inside for more than a day at a time, and then only to enjoy it or take pictures.

The Chinese Elm is a little sparse looking but it should fill in eventually. Don't overcompensate by trying to water it to health. A tree without much active foilage will not use as much water as it would otherwise. The chopstick method really works for new growers and would be a good idea for you until you get to know the tree better.

Norm

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JustinBoi
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Be to honest, I was never a fan of the braided fig but I thought it would be a nice experiment. Since its so tall and has so many leafs it blows over a lot because of the wind. But the chinese elm has some very little sprouts and I'm hoping they come in on the naked branches. Also 2 more questions, 1 why is the roots so flexible like so easy to push. And 2 should I wait till spring to prune the juniper and ginseng?
"It's not just a 'hobby', it's a type of lifestyle."

linlaoboo
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Justin,

With your ficus, is it actively growing even in the winter? All I do with mine during the winter is pinch some growing tips off to give it some direction since it's growing so slow. This improves ramification. I won't do major trimming/prunning until active growing season.
ficus, maple, elm, juniper, pine

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JustinBoi
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Its actively growing.
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linlaoboo
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my guess is that you can prune up to 1/3 of the total foliage off. but if u r thinking about a real defoliation, I'd still wait until a couple months.
ficus, maple, elm, juniper, pine

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JustinBoi
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Alright. Any more advice for my 4 plants?
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JustinBoi
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I was wondering if anyone knew anything about Green Mound Junipers and how to prune them?
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luigonz
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justin,

i heard that you never want to take off more than 20% of a junipers foliage at a time.

i lost two green mound junipers that i bought from a local nursery because i was too zealous with my pruning from the start. i would take my time with the juniper.

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JustinBoi
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I'm going to be waiting till Spring or so.
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Marsman
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[img]https://i1126.photobucket.com/albums/l612/Justin_Broughton/Newcameraphotos028.jpg[/img]

Well, I can't really see the trunk or branch structure, so it's hard to say where to go with this. You can [url=https://s956.photobucket.com/albums/ae50/marsman61/Bonsai/Juniper%20Procumbens/]take a look at my juniper[/url] and see the Photoshop work I did to plan a strategy with it.

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JustinBoi
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I got pruning scissors yesterday and even after cutting some off, It's still hard to see the beginning of the Juniper.
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manofthetrees
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it takes time and imagination especialy with a younger tree.you will need to decide what style you are aiming for then choose branches you want to keep and imagine the direction the growth will go.
sometimes its easy, i have a hemlock that i pruned and wired the day i bought it, but my large ficus took a month of turning and staring to decide the final prunning. and as for my little ficus i wired it and changed the design 3 times... i think its good now

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JustinBoi
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How do you wire a bonsai? And where can you buy it?
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