rondo769
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Location: converse,IN

Possible to Harvest & Transplant American Beech Saplings

Hello everyone,i am on vacation in northern MI. U.P. right on lake superior.Well i was doing some exploring today and came across a beech grove with many seedlings(not root suckers,already ckecked).

The owner of this property happined to see me and wanted to know what i was doing,and i told him i was just admiring the trees.he told me the property just sold to a company that was going to build a hotal on it(sale still pending). So no more beech grove!! I asked him if i could collect a few saplings and he was thrilled some trees would be saved.

So my problem is i am only here for three more days,so what are the odds of me transplanting these trees and them surviving.I would usually dig and burlap the root ball but they are growing in pure sand the root ball will not hold together and i know beech trees do not transplant well any time of year especally bare root. Any ideas?
"MY MIND BELONGS TO MY WORK
MY HEART BELONGS TO MY FAMILY
BUT MY SOUL BELONGS TO THE WOODS!"

rondo769
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Posts: 61
Joined: Tue Jun 24, 2008 10:13 pm
Location: converse,IN

these are small trees 1-3ft
"MY MIND BELONGS TO MY WORK
MY HEART BELONGS TO MY FAMILY
BUT MY SOUL BELONGS TO THE WOODS!"

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rondo769,

I've not had a lot of luck with Beeches so far but I keep trying. The ones I've dug locally never seem to have much of a root system, just a few heavy roots and very few feeders. They always leaf out the first year due to their pre-formed buds but seem to languish and slowly decline in the following years. Even purchased seedlings have not fared much better for me.

You seem to realize that this is not the ideal way to approach this but since they are going to be killed anyway I suppose there is no harm in trying but I am doubtful. Perhaps their growing in sand will mean that they have more feeder roots close to the trunk than I am used to seeing in my area. One I have in my growing bed already has next yeas buds formed so if these ones do that will work in your favor.

I suppose you will have to pot them up on the spot. Disturb the roots as little as possible leaving as much of the native soil as you can. Use the same soil to back fill the pots. Ordinarily I suggest avoiding native soils in pots but this is an unusual circumstance. You could mix in some Perlite if you wish. Do this the day before you are scheduled to leave and water them in well. Some plastic bags tented over plants will help keep the humidity up during transit just watch the temperature.

Make sure to let us know what you decide and to follow up, I am curious as to what you find when you dig them.

Norm

rondo769
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Joined: Tue Jun 24, 2008 10:13 pm
Location: converse,IN

I tried one today,i did not expect a tap root 18in long on a 15in tree,i guess it because they are growing in sand it was almost bone dry.i have an idear,i bought some 6in pvc drain pipe i want to press down in the sand over the plant that way the roots don't get distirbed to much,cover the bottom with a cap so sand doesn't fall out,kind of like taking a plug out of the ground.The only thing i haven't figured out is how to turn some into bonsai with such a long tap root,i plan on taking about 10 and planting 6 or 7 in my yard and tring the rest as bonsai.The beech i transplant in indiana do not have a tap root,all the roots are in tha first few inches of soil and i have successfully transplanted dozens of them but have never seen such a tap root on beech.I will keep you posted!
"MY MIND BELONGS TO MY WORK
MY HEART BELONGS TO MY FAMILY
BUT MY SOUL BELONGS TO THE WOODS!"

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rondo769,
The only thing i haven't figured out is how to turn some into bonsai with such a long tap root,i plan on taking about 10 and planting 6 or 7 in my yard and tring the rest as bonsai.
There is a saying that 'small bonsai do not become large bonsai' Once a tree is put into a small pot development slows drastically. Often young trees are planted in the garden for years, or even decades, with the eye towards creating bonsai in the future. Why not plant them all in your yard, the first few years will be spent getting them established anyway. This way you can get some good growth before the real training begins. The taproot can be gradually reduced at each opportunity. This is part of the process by which bonsai are created.

You can spend the time researching and doing bonsai from other angles such as nursery stock or even purchasing what is known as pre-bonsai or potensai.

Norm

rondo769
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Joined: Tue Jun 24, 2008 10:13 pm
Location: converse,IN

Thats what i was going to do i will plant them in nursery pots and gradually reduce the tap root to create more feeder roots.You can' just cut the tap root thats a good way to kill it instantly.I just thougt if i planted them in nursery pot it would be easier to reduce thetap root.The pvc method is what i use to transplant hickery trees and it work very well as the tap root on hickeries is very deep to.
There are also alot of birch do they makesuitable bonsai?
"MY MIND BELONGS TO MY WORK
MY HEART BELONGS TO MY FAMILY
BUT MY SOUL BELONGS TO THE WOODS!"

rondo769
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Posts: 61
Joined: Tue Jun 24, 2008 10:13 pm
Location: converse,IN

The deed is done,Icollected 11 altogether without disturbing any roots or soil(sand) around the roots.I iil take them home and put them in a shady spot,since they came from deep woods,and protect them from drying winds.They should all survive since i was meticulous about not disturbing the roots.
"MY MIND BELONGS TO MY WORK
MY HEART BELONGS TO MY FAMILY
BUT MY SOUL BELONGS TO THE WOODS!"



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