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My Bonsai wannabe collection -- seeking advice

I haven't started. I want to some day, so I keep "collecting" material. :P

Here are a couple of my "Bonsai Wannabe" that I thought I might show and ask if there is anything I should be doing at minimum?

elm
(I botched it when planting -- or more precisely, I neglected it and I think it pushed itself out above the soil level) and there is a couple of cut off roots that are sticking out above the soil level, but I don,t know if I should repot, cut off the excess taproot/thick roots beneath that is pushing it out, then bury to those roots (they have roots that are hanging down and growing into the medium) or if I should cut them off close to the trunk (but that would leave an obvious previous soil level stain)

Image

sweet gum with I think wild black cherry
(what I'd like to do is chop this sweet gum down to somewhere and let those new buds grow out)

Image

I'll take latest photos of others and add to this thread later. :wink:
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Re: My Bonsai wannabe collection -- seeking advice

Ok Applestar, you did ask.

Its probably past time to clean up and (root) prune the elm. Also use a better concave cutter. I like that you have the elm in a paper-white pan. I expect you will also need to cut in larger drain holes And use 1/8" hardware cloth screen to keep soil in, *wheeze* which leads to please get pots up off the ground and onto benches. he needs to sit back down to what ever is going to become his new forever soil line. Even if that means growing him for a year or three in a deeper pot.

Following the philosophy of 'one insult per year' (and your elm seeds some root-pot work), next year you can start leaf cutting.

The old guys tell that exposed elm roots don't fatten up nice and will keep them covered in soil.

I'd like to see the gum with a neutral background. He's swallowed up by background foliage.

What is the soil built out of?
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Re: My Bonsai wannabe collection -- seeking advice

I will let the people that know bonsai give the advice. But I'm in about the same stage as you with dipping my toes into bonsai water. I have a burning bush that I dug up and cut down and put in a nursery pot. This year I will cut it down further, root prune some more and put it in a little smaller pot. This year, I did take my accidental bonsai crabapple (https://www.helpfulgardener.com/forum/vi ... 8&p=120658) out of the huge pot, cut it down some and put in a nursery pot. It is interesting, has a natural 90 bend in the trunk from all the insults it went through.

I only just recently found out that those things with the little serrated leaves are elm trees. I have them popping up a bunch of places. So I'm going to pot up some of those too -- some to eventually get transplanted onto the hillside and one to play bonsai with.

I'm still intending to buy myself one indoor pre-bonsai, but haven't done it yet.

And now that the redbud seedling I planted 10 years ago is mature, I have redbud seedlings popping up like weeds all over the place. So I might try one of those as well, again some to transplant to the hillside and one to keep in a pot.
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Re: My Bonsai wannabe collection -- seeking advice

Tom, I did ask and I your comments are exactly the sort of information I'm looking for. Be brutal. (you weren't :wink: )

I was intending to repot that elm (yesterday -- or this spring at least) so this is all good advice.
"Concave cutters" -- I don't have those but was thinking that's what I need to gouge out the trunk where there is a (to my eyes) interesting large branch scar for a better look. Will put them on top of my wish list. 8)

Yeah I was afraid the blueberry bush behind the sweet gum was too much clutter. I'll take better pics.

Rainbowgardener -- if the bonsai folks are willing, you could post your pics here too and we can learn together from the advices given. :D

:idea: Bench :idea: I have a lovely cedar garden bench that has deteriorated beyond human use and was going to just push it against the fence for "decorative purposes" I think with minor fortification, it can become my Bonsai Wannabe Bench :mrgreen:

Oh, the "soil" -- it is currently a random mixture of composted pine bark of various non intentional sizes, gravel, sand, decomposing/composted tree branches screened out of the compost. Random additions of tarface type clay oil absorber from the auto parts store, small amounts pumice gravel mixed into peat/pelite/compost based potting mix. (I know -- I hope dedicated hobbyists are not offended by the randomness and casualness :| )
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Re: My Bonsai wannabe collection -- seeking advice

More pics of the elm:

I want to carefully cut off the stub of the trunk and then maybe use a scoop chisel to gouge out which hopefully will turn into an interesting trunk scar. ...but am also thinking if left alone to deteriorate more naturally, may form an aged-looking hollowed trunk, which would be even more interesting....

Image Image Image Image Image
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Re: My Bonsai wannabe collection -- seeking advice

Sweet gum and wild black cherry... And there's third seedling in there... Crabapple? Hawthorne?

Image

Upper portion of the trunk -- where to chop and now or later?

Image

At one point, I was wondering if I could air-layer the trunk between that crooked first branch and the upper cluster of branches.
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Re: My Bonsai wannabe collection -- seeking advice

Callery pear that was dug up/collected ths spring. If this survives the wounds without getting fireblight, it might turn into something interesting...

Image
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Re: My Bonsai wannabe collection -- seeking advice

Three grocery store fruit seed-grown pomegranates -- long term projects :wink: :
(these are still in ordinary potting mix and sand blend)

Image

Image

Image
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Re: My Bonsai wannabe collection -- seeking advice

Some of the wannabe's are still in the ground.

This is a sweet gum that I dug up, chopping off a major taproot and other big roots in the process, then stuck in this corner for the time being. Love the trunk scar, but do not love the rest of the way it looks... :?

Image

a couple of mulberries:

Image

A Maple in a wrong place. I've root pruned it several times (maybe three? Last fall, Spring and fall before I think) and need to dig it up now:
Image

I want to get whatever this is out of there:
Image

I also have a bunch of Japanese maple volunteers thatI have my eyes on. Here are a coupleof the bigger ones. So far, every time I dig up the smaller ones, they die and I lose them :roll:

Image

Image

...and little ones:
Image Image Image
Image
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Re: My Bonsai wannabe collection -- seeking advice

applestar wrote:
Oh, the "soil" -- it is currently a random mixture of composted pine bark of various non intentional sizes, gravel, sand, decomposing/composted tree branches screened out of the compost. Random additions of tarface type clay oil absorber from the auto parts store, small amounts pumice gravel mixed into peat/pelite/compost based potting mix. (I know -- I hope dedicated hobbyists are not offended by the randomness and casualness :| )
Lest I sound like somebody who lives inna cave on a mountain top dressed inna loincloth. I started as you have, with soil locally collected (OK saved from the compost bin). It just didn't work. I then bought some Oilz Dri as my inert component, which promptly jelled into goo and killed a crop of Japan maples.

In NH granite was routinely crushed for highway use and a gritty dust was a bi-product. That granite "grit" soil as cheap as $ 6.00 a ton, an' a ton was just (barely) transportable by my van. I built a set of screens ( 1/2", 1/4", 1/8", and window screen 1/16") Basically what ever would not pass through the 1/2" screen was too big, and therefor gravel. What ever would pass through 1/16" window screen was too small and was therefor greensand and went to the garden. All the bits in the middle became my inert component for bonsai soil.

One scoop of crushed pine bark mulch (aka soil conditioner), and one scoop of sifted granite crumbs became my basic default for bonsai soil.

Now-a-days I don't live in NH and I'm too lazy to chase for a gravel mill that does use granite (in limestone rich Ohio)... My local feed store does sell "Grani-grit" chicken scratch, in 50 Lb bags for a still ok enough price as as to not excise my cheap gland. This kind of granite grit comes in several sizes buy layer (or turkey) over chick.

Now-a-days I almost never need to use my screens.

IMO Elms and mullberry are great local candidates, only surpassed by a local bloodgood Japan maple (or a larch of you live in the north). IMO I would not buy any trees untill your confidence at meeting the horticultural needs of trees approaches hubris. New guys kill new trees with all the regularity of a metronome. I have this Tshirt...

I have $ 100 worth of pressure treated lumber quietly drying in the garage, which may become my next bench if I can ever get to it.

Boxwood and azalea are often discarded from home remodeling, and can become more developed stock to work on while you wait for tree babies to bulk up.

Ah! Sugar maples I would wait till autumn to collect to pots. I might do the same with your gum. All maples can bleed out if cut too awake in the spring. Here in Ohio I'd collect before April 1st or after June 15; and commit them to a shaded bench this year.

When I was going to really chop the heck out of a maple I'd wait till after leaf fall, and rub dirt onto wounds (use cut paste if your squeemish).
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Re: My Bonsai wannabe collection -- seeking advice

applestar wrote:Sweet gum and wild black cherry... And there's third seedling in there... Crabapple? Hawthorne?
Tease these apart next spring while dormant.
applestar wrote:Image

Upper portion of the trunk -- where to chop and now or later?
First get a good set of feet growing, then pinch or cut leaves the next year. They should bud back, which will suggest where to chop the tree.
applestar wrote:Image

At one point, I was wondering if I could air-layer the trunk between that crooked first branch and the upper cluster of branches.

If there isn't four fingers of space on main trunk between the lower branch and upper set, either hold off till your tried this kind of airlayer a couple times, or airlayer and discard the stump where it fits. That looks kinda tight.

But on balance your proposed pruning is about right and your entitled to have your own style.

Pomegranite? those drove me crazy in the north. There is a limit to what we can do to support a tree outside its biome. All my spruce are failing :( to make my point (the larch are fine--spruce is not) :(
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Re: My Bonsai wannabe collection -- seeking advice

applestar wrote:More pics of the elm:

I want to carefully cut off the stub of the trunk and then maybe use a scoop chisel to gouge out which hopefully will turn into an interesting trunk scar. ...but am also thinking if left alone to deteriorate more naturally, may form an aged-looking hollowed trunk, which would be even more interesting....

Image
A concave cutter, or a dremmel is going to be the tools to let you sculpt the stumps away-down to a manageable size.

I've made several bonsai guys exasperated by pruning down to my preffered stump in about five more steps than they think I should. Chop at the speed that works for you. IMO your building from the roots up. An extra year (or three) is not the end of the world. I would rather you prune 'down' to the lowest leaf and have the tree grow back vigorously, than loose yet another to the shears. Clean your pruner if your loosing too many...
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Re: My Bonsai wannabe collection -- seeking advice

applestar wrote:Callery pear that was dug up/collected ths spring. If this survives the wounds without getting fireblight, it might turn into something interesting...
Save as much of that dead-wood as you can. Also invest in some lime-sulfer (often used as a dormant oil) it will bleach and preserve to a degree dead-wood...

Trial (on other than bonsai) varnishes and sealers for effect you like on preserving your dead-wood.

I have found (for me) painting dead wood with full strength lime-sulfur netted me too white dead wood. Dilute it a bit or let it tone down before sealing dead-wood.

Wild pear makes a smaller rounder fruit...
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Re: My Bonsai wannabe collection -- seeking advice

applestar wrote:Three grocery store fruit seed-grown pomegranates -- long term projects :wink: :
(these are still in ordinary potting mix and sand blend)

Image

Image

Image
Applestar: how long did it take from germination to Pom at this stage?
Been wanting to try one. I like them.

Btw, you clearly stay busy! :D

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Re: My Bonsai wannabe collection -- seeking advice

Thanks Tomc, you've given me a LOT to think about :D
...definitely headed to the feed store at first opportunity for those turkey/layer granite grits.
also put crushed pine bark mulch, lime sulfur and concave cutters on the list, check V :wink:

I'm thinking these pomegranates have seen three winters so far. First winter was when they were seeded and grew as seedlings, and they'd stayed in the house. 2nd winter, I think was when I posted and asked how to overwinter, and Gnome posted a workable solution to put in the unheated garage after leaf fall/dormant until Christmas/end of Dec. when around here, the temp plunge to mid teens and even the garage temps can dip down as low as mid-20's. He said they can be brought back inside then and slowly allowed to leaf out.

In fact though, I only did that the first winter since last wo winters have been unusualy mild. They spent the entire winter in the unheated windowless garage. (They are kept nearly dry under inadequate two T-12 tube shop light left on 24/7 with no other source of light except when the overhead CFL lights are turned on or the garage doors are *rarely* opened). So far so good. The third one is multiple seedlings bunched together (but I'm not doing the technique in a dedicated way so not sure how well it's working :P ).
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Re: My Bonsai wannabe collection -- seeking advice

A.S.

I've been leaving my Pomegranates in the garage all winter recently as well. One failed to leaf out this year but three others are OK. Not sure if it was a bit too cold or I was careless in watering this winter.

While at the feed store there are a few other items you can inquire about. My local Agway can order (did not have them in stock) A Pumice product that looks similar to perlite, it is called Dry Stall. Do not accept Stall Dry as the texture is apparently inadequate for our purposes.

The second is Turface MVP (specify the MVP grade) This is clay that has been fired at a high enough temperature that it is stable. This is the only clay type product that I have found suitable. This year I was surprised to see a different package. It was not labeled as Turface but was in fact from the same parent Company, Profile. Tom is right to warn of kitty litter or (clay type) Oil-Dry, I have not found one that was stable.

NAPA does carry a product that is marketed as an absorbent that I have found suitable as it is Diatomaceous Earth not clay. I sift/grade all three of these materials but the 'fines' do have other uses.

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Re: My Bonsai wannabe collection -- seeking advice

I'm going to be posting in this thread again in spring. :D

...in the mean time, I noticed while looking out the window today, that one of the juniper volunteers I dug up and potted last spring (Untrimmed, approximately 28" tall as of last fall) is laying on its side in the frozen snow out there by the picnic table. :shock: -- I have no idea how long it's been laying like that, and I haven't had the chance to go out to take stock of the situation. I might leave it like that at this point, and see if it will have the potential to become a wind-swept style or some other interesting shape. 8)
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Re: My Bonsai wannabe collection -- seeking advice

Some bonsai artists go out hiking and when they find a plant that has some nice features they dig it up and pot it and start the top work. After it bulks up, they start reducing the roots. They like to start with 40 year old specimens because they usually have a lot of character.

Beginners usually start with year old seedlings. I started with ficus because they are very hardy and the branches stay supple a very long time. I just had to watch anytime it looked especially vigorous, it was trying to send the root into the ground. Junipers were the next easiest as they naturally trained well into a cascade form. Geometry trees should have been easy but I killed every one. Jade was also easy to pinch into shape.

I had the basic tools, copper wire of different sizes, fishing weights to hold the branches down, concave cutters, turntable, and Japanese pruning scissors. Pots are available, but since I do not display them I use concrete pots. I had a set of gravel sorting trays, but I rarely used them. My mix worked well enough and concrete unlike glazed pots breathe better. I had a hard time growing moss on the bonsai pots but they grew in pots I didn't want them in.

I avoided topping the bonsai because it takes a lot of filing and rounding to hide the cut and I always killed my bonsai when I tried to strip the bark to mimic the lightening strike.
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Re: My Bonsai wannabe collection -- seeking advice

AS,

When spring finally does get there, try and foreshorten the ugliest duckling of each type you have in training.

At some point in time you are going to have to prune out (or reduce) your well fed trees tendency to make water shoots. I wouldn't behead your best, but it might feel a little bit like a beheading the first go.

Just the proccess of creating a hierachy of your trees is gonna make you think.
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Re: My Bonsai wannabe collection -- seeking advice

Confession -- I really didn't get to do much last spring despite the wonderful advices I received, so I have to re-read this thread and do all my homework assignments :oops:

But I did add a new -- er -- "victim" to the line up :()
Volunteer crabapple I had been training into a stepover
Volunteer crabapple I had been training into a stepover
...the other one is one of the two red junipers. I dug up last year. I think I mentioned it?
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Re: My Bonsai wannabe collection -- seeking advice

Gnome wrote:A.S.

I've been leaving my Pomegranates in the garage all winter recently as well. One failed to leaf out this year but three others are OK. Not sure if it was a bit too cold or I was careless in watering this winter.
Gnome, how did your pomegranates fare this winter? I absolutely had no room to bring my three plants inside this winter, so left them out there despite the extreme temp drops this winter. I put them in an IKEA plastic drawer/tub to keep up from the floor, loosely surrounded them with a plywood and large collapsed corrugated cardboard and placed a t-12 shoplight over them 24/7 and loosely blocked the garage door side of the set up with giant shipping bubble sheets and covered the entire set up with a nylon shower liner with an old beech towel on top for good measure. I watered them occasionally (maybe once a month). When I pulled the pomegranates out a couple of days ago, they were leafing out at the top where the branches were touching or close to the lights.

*I have a shopping list based on suggestions made here that I emailed to my iPhone 8) Hopefully getting them this weekend. :-()
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Re: My Bonsai wannabe collection -- seeking advice

Oh yeah -- there used to be a Japanese maple seedling in this pot but it disappeared -- died? Got dug up? But I have a lovely moss bed growing here.... :|
image.jpg
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Re: My Bonsai wannabe collection -- seeking advice

A.S.
Gnome, how did your pomegranates fare this winter?
The Poms stayed in the garage again this year. Not yet leafed out but the branches appear limber and hydrated so I expect they will be OK.
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Re: My Bonsai wannabe collection -- seeking advice

Oh! Thanks Gnome (adding notation to my list :D )
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Re: My Bonsai wannabe collection -- seeking advice

applestar wrote:More pics of the elm:

I want to carefully cut off the stub of the trunk and then maybe use a scoop chisel to gouge out which hopefully will turn into an interesting trunk scar. ...but am also thinking if left alone to deteriorate more naturally, may form an aged-looking hollowed trunk, which would be even more interesting....

Image
This series of elms show there are cuts that need be hidden A good pair of concave cutters will allow you to sculpt the beheading wounds down.

Next I might chop each branch, leaving two leaves on each stump. The resulting second growth of leaves (and twigs) is probably as far as I'd take this tree this year. You could also stir in a few timed release fertilizer pellets into top of soil.

Ideally an elm grows a vase shape. You want tighter spaced, smaller leaves. Your gonna get there from here by on alternate years cutting off twigs (like you already did at my behest). On even years your going to put on your Morticia Addams, and cut off most of the surface of each leaf and the terminal leaf-branch.

Both of these steps will make over a half dozen years or so your elm to look like a poodle after a hair dryer.

Its now April 2014. April 2015 you are also going to comb out soil and chops stick (by poking) in fresh bonsai soil. Not floor sweepings and left over "dirt". But real bonsai soil. Your tree will thank me for it...
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Re: My Bonsai wannabe collection -- seeking advice

applestar wrote:Confession -- I really didn't get to do much last spring despite the wonderful advices I received, so I have to re-read this thread and do all my homework assignments :oops:

But I did add a new -- er -- "victim" to the line up :()
image.jpg
...the other one is one of the two red junipers. I dug up last year. I think I mentioned it?

Oo oo, every once inna while nature does for you what you may struggle with for years (to get a) tree to do.

The crab applish lookin' tree with a trailing branch is a dandy place to start from. hereinafter that trailing branch shall be called (by me) the sacrifice branch.

I would prune the rising branch to a third or fourth leaf. Leave the 'sacrifice branch' on and intact.

Because your not going to repot this year, here is a tree where you should get your Morticia Addams on with.

There are two distinct ways to reduce leaf size and shorten internode length. Twigg pruning can help some but the most effective is to force a second growth of leaves, is to leaf prune. I cut off 50 to 85% percent of the surface of each leaf. A second smaller set of leaves will grow out and the original set of foreshortened leaves will often drop off. Just like Morticia cut off her roses, you're gonna cut leaves.

No your not far enough along to much in the way of styling. Beyond cutting out watershoots. You want a full bushy wide tree. not a tall one.
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Re: My Bonsai wannabe collection -- seeking advice

applestar wrote:Oh yeah -- there used to be a Japanese maple seedling in this pot but it disappeared -- died? Got dug up? But I have a lovely moss bed growing here.... :|
image.jpg

Young Japan maples have lots sugar in them. It rises in the spring. Alvin and his buddies cut the stem to drink the sugar water...

A stout cage or some kind of infernal poison was part of my solution to this. I ultimately gave up on organic composts or organic fertilizers.

Mickey, Alvin and all their relations don't seem to stalk bark mulch, but a whiff of cotton meal get them going.

YMMV
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Re: My Bonsai wannabe collection -- seeking advice

Thanks, tomc! I am going to do everything you suggested! :D

:evil: about the J. Maple. I will have to take steps. No wonder none of my volunteer seedlings seem to make it. :x
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Re: My Bonsai wannabe collection -- seeking advice

I have bumped into sacrifice branches ten feet long. I'll grant you it looks goofy, but the ends justifies the means..
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Re: My Bonsai wannabe collection -- seeking advice

One has to go to the cold house only once and find a Japan maple chewed off that was twice as thick as your thumb, to go jihad on all critters small & furry.
Think like a tree
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applestar
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Re: My Bonsai wannabe collection -- seeking advice

I have another wannabe. This is a vine -- I think maybe campsis (trumpet vine)? I can't tell because it hasn't bloomed. I've been keeping it trimmed but it's still growing in the ground. (That's a 24" diameter lid)

In terms of styling for eventual final form, should I chop it down shorter now or later after it has been lifted and potted? When should I dig it up? Should I start root pruning for excavation?
image.jpg
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applestar
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Re: My Bonsai wannabe collection -- seeking advice

Yay! This is the first time a potted Japanese Maple seedling has survived for two winters in a row :-()
This is just a baby :wink:
image.jpg
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tomc
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Re: My Bonsai wannabe collection -- seeking advice

Yea, japan maples. better than a strong cuppa coffee.
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applestar
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Re: My Bonsai wannabe collection -- seeking advice

I'll be posting pictures of my bonsai wannabes again this year. Many of them need to be repotted and others will need a review of their (amateur) styling.

This is my other Sweetgum bonsai wannabe. It's still in the ground but I've been leaf pruning it just about every year as an experiment of the technique for reducing leaf size.
image.jpg
I've also root pruned it (simply cutting off big roots coming off of it with my garden shove) from time to time

For comparison, here is another Sweet Gum volunteer which has not been leaf pruned:
image.jpg
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applestar
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Re: My Bonsai wannabe collection -- seeking advice

I pruned/trimmed it some more....
image.jpg
...that stump naturally creates the "back" to this tree because I can't really see what it looks like from that angle, and it isn't realiy growing in that direction much. So hopefully it looks presentable from these angles.

I was thinking this will be its canopy and I won't let it grow any taller... But would it be better to shorten it even more?
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applestar
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Re: My Bonsai wannabe collection -- seeking advice

Here are some of my bonsai wannabe's again. These are most of the ones in pots. I think there are two or three missing from this collage (a juniper, a Rose of Sharon, and oh, TWO other pomegranates). I bought a concave cutter and will be going over all of these. I also want to take a wood carving tool and work at the big cut in the sweet gum trunks to hopefully turn them into a sunken hollow....
image.jpeg
  • seed grown pomegranate...dead sweet gum with I think crabapple...Mulberry
    Juniper...crabapple...trumpet vine in green bowl and hmm, can't remember what's in the white
    Mulberry...volunteer Japanese maple...sweet gum
-- I need to repot and re-seat most of these --

Here are some that are still in the ground. I also have two oaks and a couple of mulberries that are not pictured.
image.jpeg
  • sweet gum...Callery pear
    Volunteer (seed or root sucker) plums...sweet gum
-- I'm going to root prune these --

...obviously, I'm going to have to start labeling them... :oops:
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applestar
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Re: My Bonsai wannabe collection -- seeking advice

Here's my Bonsai Wannabe oak in one of my vegetable garden beds:
Image
-- I've been casually root pruning it all around, but I think I'll take out the leader again and dig it out to pot up this year.

The leaves are just leafing out and will get bigger, but it looks good right now doesn't it? :D
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imafan26
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Re: My Bonsai wannabe collection -- seeking advice

When I select a plant for bonsai, I kinda let it tell me what it wants to be.
I look for plants with small leaves. It is easier to keep them in scale if the leaves are small
I also look for plants that have interesting trunks, shapes or branching. It is actually hard to make a common looking tree interesting, but a tree that already has character built in, already has a head start.
I don't have the skill or the space to cut down a large tree and I have had zero success with bark stripping so
I usually start with smaller trees and if I grow them out, I pinch them more to promote branching sooner and besides it does not look very natural when you have to cut the lead and takes some skill (which I don't have) to shave it down to make it look like it broke off naturally.
Look for trees with branches that stay supple for a long time and the plants need to be long lived.

Tools
A good sheer
small leaf scissors
a fork (cheaper than a rake and it works)
a good saw
long tweezers
a brush
concave cutters different sizes if you have different size branches.
files
wire of different guages. Copper is best and reusable but very expensive. Aluminum will work.
wire cutters
turn table

Jade is an easy and forgiving plant and easy to prune, you litterally can use your fingers to break a branch or leaf off
Geometry tree - Should be easy shapes itself as long as you have full sun or even light all around
Juniper for me is an easy bonsai because it lends itself to cascade style and I can grow it outdoors all year. It is also easy to get so cheap starter.
Rhapsiolepsis indica Indian Hawthorne grows very slowly. Need to be careful about pruning, you have to live with the mistakes a long time. But because it grows so slow there is less maintenance
Ficus because they are forgiving of light and will grow the leaves back so they are resilient and long lived
Fukien tea makes a good bonsai, just don't let it go to seed.
Panax is a small shrub that does well with shaping.
Dwarf Schefflera
Desert rose ( I put it in a pot and let it do its thing.)
camelia
boxwood
bougainvillea
cypress
dogwood
pine
Chinese Elm
Happy gardening in Hawaii. Gardens are where people grow.

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applestar
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Re: My Bonsai wannabe collection -- seeking advice

Bumping this as reminder to myself that I want to put this project back on the front burner this year :oops:

...Just uppotted my Bonsai Wannabe Japanese Maple seedlings since they started to wake up from their winter sleep:
Image
...don’t worry, the potting mix is only on the top 1/2 inch or so... rest is gravelly mix of orchid bark, charcoal, DE, and calcined clay.

Took a pic of one of my Bonsai Wannabe citruses with an interesting trunk base — that happened on its own. It’s still in the scaffold/architectural branch structures developing phase. Also trying to induce additional interest higher up on the trunk:
Image
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applestar
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Re: My Bonsai wannabe collection -- seeking advice

More Bonsai wannabe pics

Japanese Maple seedlings
Image

Pomegranate grown from store-bought fruit seed (not the typically used for Bonsai “Nana dwarf”)
Image

Latest addition — wisteria grown from seeds from my mom’s wisteria. Going to twine the three together.
Image
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