tomc
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Ditch diggin'

"Yamadori", the Japanese euphemism of, 'rescued from the forrest' has gotten just about every single wild grown azalea dug up. I expect if you went to Japan and tried doing that today you'd get shot. Likewise digging naturaly dwarfed trees out of federal and state parks here in the USA is illegal.

That said, there are unwanted trees and shrubs being perpetually mowed or removed (or sprayed) out of existance here, that might bear your examination. Inasmuch as they are free for the asking, are worth your enquirey and trial.

A enquirey at freecycle in the spring and fall, is enherently, well, free. It should also set aside any doubt or question of the propriety of digging on somebody elses property.

This was one of the fastest ways I found to get free candidates with big enough stumps to be worthy of first styling.

Oh you'll loose a year or three getting the roots to recover from being taken up, but a big nursery pot will let roots recover while you spin the pot on a dolly and scheme about how to rework the top. Time enough to think about things that will benefit you and the tree.

Trees like?
Azalea, birch, blueberry, boxwood, crab apple, elm, quince, maple, mullberry, oak, pear, just to name a few.

If nobody has read my introduction post here in this forum, I'm real partial to bonsai that live out of doors. This was the only way I found to get big enough stumps to play with, without needing to wait a decade or float a third-world sized national debt.

If you ask nice, you'll get rewarded with stock you might never live long enough to grow out on your own from seedlings.
Think like a tree
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JTred
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I've been fortunate enough to get a couple of great landscape shrubs through my work for a landscaper. They were ugly hedges, but make great starter material.

The one thing that makes me hesitate to do it on my own is liability. If you offer to take out an unwanted shrub for free, will they expect you to fill the hole or plant grass too? What if you hit an electrical or gas line that neither you nor the homeowner knows about. I guess what I'm saying is be careful, and make sure you and the owner of the land you are taking the plants from are on exactly the same page about what is going to happen and whose responsibility it is to clean up.

Marsman
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I'm friendly with the folks at a local nursery that does landscaping and they let me poke around the discard pile out back. I need to train them to call me on days when they do dig trees and shrubs up. Working on that. Now, I just stop in 2 or 3 times a week to check for cast-offs.

(Note to self, make a card to drop off with them with 'BONSAI GUY' in big red letters and my cell number on it.)

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froggy
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Joined: Tue Nov 16, 2010 9:54 pm
Location: Toronto, ON, zone 5a

Coffee & donuts would help stick it to their memories :)

There I was thinking i could talk the nice people at CT out of some dead looking bonsai, and next thing i know, they have someone working there who actually knows how to coax them back to life... (grumble)
gotta try at a cheaper store :p, problem is HD, literally keeps them until they are well and truly dead...
;)

Marsman
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Your local, small nurseries usually hate the ugly, little trees we love.

I got one last year that had another tree fall on it during a windy day. It had half the branches ripped off. They were going to chuck it in the scrap heap. I WIN!

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JustinBoi
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I am the shyest 14 year old ever.
I am shy about everything.
Walking into a local plant nursery makes me just feel awkward.
Only because I am the only 14 year old walking into a PLANT nursery.
I will not even ask for help..
Let alone ask for things they may throw out.
Things like this stop me from a lot of things.
(Sorry if I am sharing my whole social life with you all) :)
"It's not just a 'hobby', it's a type of lifestyle."

Marsman
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Watch a few John Wayne movies, that should help. :P

You want things in life? Ask for them. For the most part, people are really nice about it. If they're jerks, then just walk away.
Some Smart Guy Somewhere wrote:If you don't ask, you don't get.

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JustinBoi
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I don't think you've been to Florida.
But there's old mean people (a lot of them), lots of funny people, bad drivers, nice people, and then rude people.
Here, all they care about is money, which most places want too.
My only problem is asking, and/or getting to know the people.
And who is a 'John Wayne' ??
:)
"It's not just a 'hobby', it's a type of lifestyle."

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froggy
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Location: Toronto, ON, zone 5a

I used to be shy, then i had acting classes - wait I am still shy, but i can PRETEND i am not :D

(nah, not a wannabe actress, just a wannabe animator...)
;)

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JustinBoi
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:)
I think I can PRETEND not to be shy but I might end up running out of the store...
"It's not just a 'hobby', it's a type of lifestyle."

TomM
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tomc - YOU ARE THE BEST THING TO HAPPEN TO THIS BONSAI FORUM IN A LONG TIME. Well......since...MARSMAN

OK - JustinBoi - you're a close second!

Anyway I just wanted to compliment tomc for having created new reading material that brings so many people out of their shells. Thank you. Look at how this one thread blossomed in just one day. So gritty and down to earth. It defies those who feel that bonsai people are just a bunch of snobs. You've probably heard their reference to the reverse spelling of BONSAI as I A SNOB. No way.

But please "Who's John Wayne?", gotta love it. Ask Granddad. :wink: :lol: :lol:

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JustinBoi
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Will ask GrandDad :).
And were snobs that love... trees/plants :)
Mostly what I observe is people mispronouncing 'Bonsai' (BONE-sigh). Get it right!
I think it's because it doesn't flow across our tongues easily.
And how am I in second?! :o
"It's not just a 'hobby', it's a type of lifestyle."

Marsman
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JustinBoi wrote:And who is a 'John Wayne' ??
:)
A little part of me just died.

[url=https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Wayne]The Duke[/url]
[img]https://www.cinemaretro.com/uploads/waynecowboy.jpg[/img]
John Wayne was an American film actor, director and producer. He epitomized rugged masculinity and became an enduring American icon.

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JustinBoi
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...He looks drunk :).
But I asked GrandDad and he told me about him...
After 5 minutes I was somewhat bored.
But oh well. :D
Back on topic:
Might be working for my local nursery over the summer, maybe instead of being paid, I can ask for the leftover plants :!:
"It's not just a 'hobby', it's a type of lifestyle."

tomc
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JustinBoi wrote:I am the shyest 14 year old ever.
I am shy about everything.
Walking into a local plant nursery makes me just feel awkward.
Only because I am the only 14 year old walking into a PLANT nursery.
I will not even ask for help..
Let alone ask for things they may throw out.
Things like this stop me from a lot of things.
(Sorry if I am sharing my whole social life with you all) :)
Freecycle is a yahoogroups discussion group. A shy reader could simply subscribe and lurk through offers. Or be bold enough to put a post up in cool weather asking for shrubs or landscape tree(s) being taken out. Craigs list covers similar ground.

You are not compelled to take anything offered to you, and They are not compelled to give you any.

Justin, if you are way south-FL in like the keys you get to grow out of doors just about all the trees Yankees only get to mummify and kill under grow lights.

Justin, Hows your Spanish? Many people you might never think of, also grow and train small trees and may be accomodating to your pursuit. Growing roses fer instance, is concidered a pretty 'butch' hobby in Spain. The guy working for the yard service digging up trees-shrubs might be both sympathetic to our hobby, and thrilled to have you take away what he's got to haul away to the transfer station/landfill.
Think like a tree
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Marsman
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Location: Coventry, CT

JustinBoi wrote:...He looks drunk :).
But I asked GrandDad and he told me about him...
After 5 minutes I was somewhat bored.
The youth of today... [img]https://i956.photobucket.com/albums/ae50/marsman61/Fun%20Stuff/icon_oldman.gif[/img]

Anyway, TomC has some good ideas. I'm checking out Craigs List next myself.
Last edited by Marsman on Tue Apr 12, 2011 2:05 pm, edited 1 time in total.

tomc
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All but one of the larch that came here with me to OH, were not merely dug out a ditch, but delivered to me by a person who was cleaning up her front yard after the town crew had passed by with a sicle-mower.

The idea that I was pumped up over some sawed off tamarack stumps, had her intregued. She stuck around to watch me pot them up, just to convince herself that I wasn't going to smoke them, 'or something'.

Well the fact that they went out on a bench with many other trees of her first veiwing helped too.

I did have one town-crew try to tell me I had to take all of several thousand larch, or none, once. (I did pass on that deal)
Think like a tree
© 2016 Invisable Inc.

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JustinBoi
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I do not take Spanish or know any.
I do take French in school which probably will not help me anywhere here in the U.S.
Maybe Canada.
I went to my local nursery today and they said they would have to think about if I could work there.
Only because I am so young. The said they would say 'no' if I had no idea about any plants.
But since I've been there numerous times and know almost everything they sell, they said I might be able to.
(Since I have the knowledge) :)
The Youth Of Today :) We are just so nice now-a-days :twisted:
"It's not just a 'hobby', it's a type of lifestyle."

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