mr_greggy
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Posts: 58
Joined: Fri Jul 15, 2011 2:23 pm
Location: Malta

could someone identify this mallsai for me please?

hi. i bought this little monster nearly 2 weeks ago from a garden centre. could you please help my identify it? i tried to look through pics online, and tried some 'identifier' sites, but couldnt make it out. this is what it looked like when i bought it:
[img]https://i1213.photobucket.com/albums/cc462/mr_greggy/bonsai%20for%20forum%2015th%20July%202011/IMG_0930.jpg[/img]
then i unpotted it to check on its roots and to repot it in 2/3 bonasi compost and 1/3 natural gravel - the idea was to aide drainage. i also gave it a good trim as you can see :) this was the result:
[img]https://i1213.photobucket.com/albums/cc462/mr_greggy/bonsai%20for%20forum%2015th%20July%202011/IMG_0952.jpg[/img]

I just received some concave and knob cutters i ordered, and would like to get to work some more on this one. However, i don't know if this is the right time due to it probably still being in shock and due to the time of year. (I live in Malta, hot mediterranean island, maxing round 35 celsius right now).

Another problem i have is that the leaves have not been looking healthy the last couple of days. This pic should give an idea:
[img]https://i1213.photobucket.com/albums/cc462/mr_greggy/bonsai%20for%20forum%2015th%20July%202011/IMG_0954.jpg[/img]
[img]https://i1213.photobucket.com/albums/cc462/mr_greggy/bonsai%20for%20forum%2015th%20July%202011/IMG_0955.jpg[/img]

Any help will be appreciated. Thanks loads!

Greg
Have no fear of perfection - you will
never reach it. - Salvador Dali

kdodds
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Location: Airmont, NY Zone 6/7

Are the edges of the leaves serrated?

mr_greggy
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Joined: Fri Jul 15, 2011 2:23 pm
Location: Malta

yes, but its a very fine serration, hardly visble to naked eye. even in macro pics its sometimes hard to determine, but this leaf here has the clearest serration i could spot...

[img]https://i1213.photobucket.com/albums/cc462/mr_greggy/bonsai%20for%20forum%2015th%20July%202011/idleaf.jpg[/img]

thanks loads
Have no fear of perfection - you will
never reach it. - Salvador Dali

kdodds
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Location: Airmont, NY Zone 6/7

Best guess... Sageretia theezans, Sweet Plum.

linlaoboo
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Location: NJ

that looks like my bird plum
ficus, maple, elm, juniper, pine

kdodds
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Joined: Fri Mar 07, 2008 12:07 am
Location: Airmont, NY Zone 6/7

Same species as I've mentioned, just another name for it.

mr_greggy
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Posts: 58
Joined: Fri Jul 15, 2011 2:23 pm
Location: Malta

yep, thanks. from pics it looks like it might very well be sweet plum. prob not the right thread, but any ideas what i can do with it? i bought it to have something i can experiment with, but I am a bit lost as to what to keep. even tho i chose this side a front of kinds, the branches on the right are growing right behind each other. think it might be a better idea to just keep 2 branchings off the main trunk? and since it starts so low, should i start exposing more of its part that under ground to make it taller?
Have no fear of perfection - you will
never reach it. - Salvador Dali

kdodds
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Location: Airmont, NY Zone 6/7

Honestly, I'm not quite sure what, if anything, I'd do with it. It looks to me, basically, like your typical "shrub in a pot" type of mallsai. The most likely course, to me, it seems, going by your third image, would be to keep the leftmost main larger brank as the new trunk line and chop everything else with the possible exception of the foremost lowest branch on the right, which I'd get into a more vertical position, and then chop to within an inch or two of the trunk.

linlaoboo
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Location: NJ

If that was my tree, I'd keep the thickest as the main trunk like kdodds said. The branches on the right I'd try to air layer one of them before letting them go to waste but I've not seen this propagation method being recommended for any where online and I have not tried it myself. The worse case is you can try to root the smaller branches as cuttings.

One thing I can say is this tree gets long over grown shoots that will need to be trimmed every so often like what you show in the 4th picture. I've used those stems for thread grafting to develop new branches where I wanted them.
ficus, maple, elm, juniper, pine

linlaoboo
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Location: NJ

I would also elevate it over time to show off the nebari. That's assuming it's a good looking one, otherwise don't bother.
ficus, maple, elm, juniper, pine

mr_greggy
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Posts: 58
Joined: Fri Jul 15, 2011 2:23 pm
Location: Malta

hi guys (and girls?)

so here's what my little monster is looking like now... hey at least all the remaining leaves look healthy! :)

[img]https://i1213.photobucket.com/albums/cc462/mr_greggy/bonsai%20for%20forum%2015th%20July%202011/IMG_0963.jpg[/img]

and a close up of the chopping work, perhaps u can give me some feedback on that.

[img]https://i1213.photobucket.com/albums/cc462/mr_greggy/bonsai%20for%20forum%2015th%20July%202011/IMG_0964.jpg[/img]

i wonder how that arch between the trunk and first main branch (where there was an ugly stub) will develop. right now i think it looks very unnatural (duh!), and i was wondering whether i should 'sculpt' it further into looking more natural.

my biggest curiosity, however, is whether there is something i can do to encourage growth on that primary branch to the right. it looks nowhere close to budding to me!

peace out

Greg
Have no fear of perfection - you will
never reach it. - Salvador Dali

mr_greggy
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Posts: 58
Joined: Fri Jul 15, 2011 2:23 pm
Location: Malta

PS - on a positive note, i think there is some drastic tapering going on, giving it a very 'up close' (? forgot what the right term is) feel, like it might one day make a cute tiny tree :)

also, lin, i started exposing the one little nebari that was already visible. i think its pretty nice, although seems to be the only developed one. however, the trunk narrows considerably just underneath the soil, so not sure whether i should expose it...
Have no fear of perfection - you will
never reach it. - Salvador Dali

kdodds
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Location: Airmont, NY Zone 6/7

If it is Sageretia, it should throw buds off the branch pretty readily, just provide plenty of sun and humidity.

mr_greggy
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Joined: Fri Jul 15, 2011 2:23 pm
Location: Malta

SOS! leaves have been brown and crumply (tho not falling) for a while now! and no new growth so far either. I have moved it indoors (a few feet behind a big glass door, so should get plenty of light) in order to check if it was just too hot for it outside - scratched the bark and its still nice n green underneath, but something just aint right! im afraid i ll eventually lose it! Help please! I can take more pics, try posting on different forums to maybe someone can identifiy it better, hopefully that will give me a better idea on how to care for it?

Greg
Have no fear of perfection - you will
never reach it. - Salvador Dali

kdodds
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Location: Airmont, NY Zone 6/7

Sigh... yet another failing Bird Plum. Not really your fault, they're very difficult trees. Bringing it indoors won't usually help, I can tell you that. Mine is outside, in 100ºF heat, full sun. My indoor one gets a south/east/west exposure. My indoor humidity is around 50% in a greenhouse/garden window. Outdoors the humidity has been extraordinarily high the last few weeks. The one outside is growing more vigorously than the one inside, though it's hard to tell how much more vigorously as I've been pruning back the one indoors more.

hegx442
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Joined: Tue Jan 10, 2012 1:24 pm
Location: Derby

Hi Greg,

How is your little tree? Did you manage to save it?

I have just got my first Bonsai and I'm trying to identify it. I think it is the same species as yours, would you mind taking a look?

https://photobucket.com/hegx442bonsai

Thanks :)
hegx

robbie00
Newly Registered
Posts: 3
Joined: Mon Dec 26, 2011 8:40 pm

I'm also curious... have you managed to save the tree? I liked how you styled it, it gave me some ideas of what to do with a similar mallsai of my own.

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