Frogman
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Location: Washington

Novice- Would like some bonsai help!

Hello, I've been doing quite a bit of research on bonsais, I even bought a couple from a bonsai store (one being Chinese Elm and the other is some other sub-tropical plant) so far they've been doing well indoors.
I'm in Western Washington (zone 4) and was wondering what kind of other bonsais I could be growing? I would like to try maybe some maples and ficus. Any help as for what kinds of plants I should pick/which ones would grow well here would be much appreciated, thanks! :)

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rainbowgardener
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If you are talking about growing indoors, you need to stick with the tropical/ sub-tropical trees. The ficus is a good one, easy to grow indoors. Other popular indoor bonsai include serissa and fukien tea.

The maple is a temperate deciduous tree and will NOT do well indoors. You could do one if you get it in spring and then leave it outdoors all year round. It is cold hardy in your zone.
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Frogman
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Joined: Tue Oct 30, 2012 10:47 pm
Location: Washington

Thanks for the help!
I was wondering if this kind of maple (Acer campestre) would grow here? I couldn't seem to find that kind of info on it. Also, I haven't been able to find anywhere around here that sells anything like this I was also thinking about getting this kind of ficus: Ficus burtt-davyi

tomc
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If I can find a boxwood and upright yew by search in person and by freecycle; you can too.

You cannot buy your way to bonsai bliss.

You can find your way to bonsai bliss.

Anything you can aford to buy from a nursery is a ten year wait to style.
Think like a tree
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rainbowgardener
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If you look it up, you will find that your hedge maple is only hardy to zone 5:

https://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/st010

If you are really in zone 4 as you say, the hedge maple is unlikely to do well for you. It will die if kept indoors all the time, but it won't survive your winter outdoors.

There are a number of maple trees that are hardy to zone 4. Actually for keeping in a bonsai pot, you would probably do well to look for trees that are hardy to zone 3 (there are some of those as well) since they have a lot less protection in a bonsai pot than in the ground. Then read up about winter protection for your bonsai.

Zone 3 maples include: flame amur, sugar maple, silver maple, tatarian maple

I know nothing personally about meehan's miniatures, but googling meehan's miniatures reviews, I found nothing but positive reviews, and googling meehan's miniatures complaints, I found zero complaints, so they sound like an OK company to deal with.
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

Frogman
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Joined: Tue Oct 30, 2012 10:47 pm
Location: Washington

I really like the looks of the Tatarian maples. I hear that some people don't like maples for bonsai because the leaves are too big, but I would assume that the leaves would reduce in size over time being kept in a bonsai pot? I will definitely try to find some Tatarian maple seedlings.
Thanks, I really appreciate all your effort and help with this.

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