AubyBug
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Location: New Zealand

Japanese Maple Bonsai Tree. Guide meeee =]

Hi everyone, I'm super new here so just to introduce myself, my name is Auburn but you can call me Auby, I live in New Zealand and am 20 years old.

I got this Japanese Maple Bonsai

Image

I was just wanting some guidance. His leaves are a bit holey and small spots of browning.

Image

Is this bad? Should I worry? and also, when is a good time to start shaping, and does anyone have any good tips for shaping?

Thank you so much =]



Happy Bonsai!

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rainbowgardener
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Not sure about the leaf problem, some one more expert can help you.

But honestly you don't really have a JM bonsai (yet), you have a rooted cutting in a pot.

Here's some e.g.s of what your goal might be:

Image
https://artofbonsai.org/galleries/images ... 03931v.jpg

Image
https://www.bonsai-made-easy.com/images/maple.jpg

Notice trunk thickness.

A general guideline is that a finished bonsai should be about 6 times as tall as the thickness of the trunk. That would mean your tree should be maybe 2" tall. But of course yours is not a finished bonsai. If it were me, I would put it in a big pot and let it grow for a few years, until it gets a bit of trunk girth. Then you can cut it back down and work with it.
Twitter account I manage for local Sierra Club: https://twitter.com/CherokeeGroupSC Facebook page I manage for them: https://www.facebook.com/groups/65310596576/ Come and find me and lots of great information, inspiration

AubyBug
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Thank you so much!

I had no idea it was just a cutting.

So should i repot it now/in the immediate future?

Thank you, really. You are greatly appreciated!

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Gnome
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Auby,

Welcome to the forum and to bonsai. The holes are probably just a little insect damage, not a big issue and nothing to be done except try to keep the culprits in check. Deciduous trees are generally re-potted in the spring, just as they are breaking dormancy. Fall re-potting is possible but I don't see any urgency in your situation.

Your immediate concern should be over-wintering it as it needs a dormant period. You are intending this as an outdoor tree, correct? Start reading up on this issue and just exactly what comprises a decent bonsai medium. You can pot it up a bit next spring but be aware that you can go too far. An overly large pot is detrimental as it can stay wet longer. This can lead to root problems.

Norm

AubyBug
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Aw thank you! I love the bonsai community already. You guys are fantastic.
Yes I thought it may have been something like that but wanted to make sure =]

Yes, I would have preferred an indoor but we have very select range to choose from over here in NZ. Yes the dormancy period was a little bit of a concern because we live in a Valley and in the winter the mountains near us get covered with snow and blow looks of ice wind our way. It can also get pretty gusty here when is hot too but it's not as bad. What is the main problem with keeping a JM bonsai indoors?
Also, I looked up the hardiness zone of where I live and it's a 9 and the Japanese Maple is good in the 5-8 range. Is this much of a worry?

Thank you so much again =]

Yay bonsai!

-Auby

Edit: winter is June-July-August here, so in a couple of months JM will go sleepys until September and when he wakes up that's a good time to repot him into a bigger but not heaps bigger pot so he can get some junk in his trunk?

=]

AubyBug
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This is what he looks like this morning!!

Image

EEEEEE what am I doing wrong friends?! Am i killing him? I havent watered him yet today because his soil is still moist, it sticks to the skewer. Have I watered him too much? He had a couple hours of sun this morning. And I had him over a dish of water on top of some stones yesterday for humidity. Eeee too much stuff? Not enough?

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Gnome
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Auby,

Don't water until needed, with limited/compromised foliage it will not use as much water as a more vigorous tree. Humidity tray is not the issue.

By fall my Japanese Maples tend to look a lot like yours. I know I said that it belongs outside, and it does, but this species is an understory tree and direct sun & windy conditions do not do them any favors.

Dormancy is a process that begins after the summer solstice. Your tree is on its way to sleep and will not likely recover this season. The damaged leaves will slowly fade and drop as fall progresses. Don't panic.

Norm

P.S. Regarding training and the immediate future of your tree have a look at this thread.

AubyBug
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Norm

I wasn't planning on watering it until it had nearly dried out.
So would you recommend no humidity tray or just every now and then?

That's such a relief. Thank you very very much.

Phew

-Auby

tomc
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Your tree baby looks to be a bloodgood. I like this old breed. it does make a bigger bonsai. Look for a hime if you need to go small.

You need to read, understand & follow chop stick method for watering.

You need to touch and pay attention to your tree every single day.

Maples are temperate hearty trees which need a dormant cold period. Your tree is hearty to -10F

Tiny holes in leaves are caused by tiny mouth parts on leaf eating bugs.
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rainbowgardener
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and dormant means it will drop its leaves. So don't worry about the damaged foliage, it was getting ready to let it all go any way.
Twitter account I manage for local Sierra Club: https://twitter.com/CherokeeGroupSC Facebook page I manage for them: https://www.facebook.com/groups/65310596576/ Come and find me and lots of great information, inspiration

AubyBug
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Awesome thank you. Its really good to know what I've got =]

Yes I feel like a neglectful mother if I don't come and see him every day.

Is there a maximum temperature JM can withstand?
And with dormancy, if where I live doesn't get to a cold enough temperature and stay there long enough for him to go dormant and stay dormant for as long as he needs, I need to make things colder for him somehow yes?

YAY, that's good, I feel like I hurt him someone.

Thank you guys!

tomc
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Bloodgood and Hime have Japanese provinance. I expect you have enough cold. Ask your local nurseryman. (and or reduced enough light levels)

It is marginally possible to use a fridge incrimentaly. It works a little better than donating skin for a skin graft with out anesthesia. Ask ask ask.

Water, undestand it read up in the libary here.

Dirt, its not what you think it is read again the FAQ about dirt

Touch your tree.

Solar maximum(s) south of the mason dixon line here in the USofA some kind of afternoon shade helps JM tree babies.
Think like a tree
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AubyBug
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Hello again.
So i've been watering only every few days because it hasn't seemed to need all that much water.
Today though I was just having a little look and there were some cobwebs so I proceeded to brush them off and I may have brush a leaf too hard or something because the leaf and the thin branch it was on sort of popped off. It doesn't look like it broke off, it almost looks like theres new bits growing. Is that normal?
I'll post some photos.

Thanks guys

-Auby

AubyBug
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Location: New Zealand

Image

So this is where the two branches popped off from. Are they new ones growing?

Image

I also spotted these little white pod looking things while I was doing my check up on my tree. What are they? Are they anything to worry about?
There is a bigger version of this photo on photobucket.
https://s1340.photobucket.com/user/aubyb ... 6.jpg.html

Image

And lastly
What is this?



Thank you =]

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applestar
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By "branch" I expect you mean leaf petioles. They dropped as predicted. The little pointy red bumps are buds that will grow when the tree wakes up again in spring.

I don't know what the "white pod things" are nor whether that is a normal part of the tree or something else, though it seems like they should be at every leaf node if part of the structure....

By definition "weed" is anything that is growing where you don't want it to be, and in a container, anything other than the main resident is a weed since it would steal nutrients and water. :wink:
(It does look a bit like my true potato seed seedlings, so it could be a member of solanacea, but it's hard to tell at this stage.)

tomc
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The white things look like the fresh scar where your leaf dropped off from.

That said, now is a teachable moment where a magnifying glass and a sharp pair of tweezers could be a moment well spent touching your tree baby.

I don't think they are scale, but you probably wanna know more than me.

Worts and moss and lowly things growing in your soil compete with checking for moisture and feeding your tree baby.

Learn to love your tweezers... 8)
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AubyBug
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Oh. Yes, that is what I meant. How embarrassing, calling them branches =/

I thought that may have been what was happening. Thank you very much applestar.

Mm this is further down from where the leaf dropped.

Teachable how? What should I do with my fantastic tweezers?

Thank you tomc

tomc
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Scale are the medium tank of the insect world. If you can lift off one of those little white 'things', an' give it a good look under a glass, it might well not be scale.

From here I can't tell.
Think like a tree
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AubyBug
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Oky doke. Only trouble, I don't have a magnifying glass.

I did grab my tweezers and did some inspecting though.
When I grabbed them they popped like a pimple and there was a yellow goo in them. And a couple had what looked like the trees sap under them. They have left little white spots where they were too. Does that tell you anything?

Thank you

-Auby

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applestar
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I have found that taking a well-focused close up photo (even with cell phone cam) then looking at the picture on the computer monitor screen or even iPad screen lets me see much more detail than my own eyes (sad to say). (and you're welcome :wink: )

LexStarwalker
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How is your little tree doing AubyBug?

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