Sunday, 26 February 2012

Native decisions

My hawthorns are budding out now. They will do another year in pots ( or maybe the beds ) until I do anything more with them. They get some cutting back and basic training at this stage to stop anything really silly from happening. They are in much larger pots than the beech trees so I'm happy to let them go on another year further.

The beech's and oaks still show no signs of coming out of dormancy. I keep them lightly fed and don't let them dry out.

This is one of my copper beech trees that I bough at the hedging nursery 2 years ago and grew on in a pot. In mid winter I chopped it down to 1/3 of its height because the wind kept on blowing it over. I took it inside a few weeks ago and got all the leaves off it so that I could have a good look at what was going on.

I'm starting to think about getting this one into a bonsai pot. Trunk is ok thickness and it will continue to grow further - but I'm keen to play with the branches and ramification. As I don't know the behaviour of beech's that well this will be purely to learn more and not destined for greatness.

The lesson learned from the hedging nursery is that they can be completely bare root this time of the year without much damage and a high degree of success. 

This is my old green maple 33 days after being root pruned and put into that new pot. I think I'm getting the technique right now. I'm startled at the vigour - it's needing daily water now - its been cut back quite a lot already. The top is being kept back to 1 node and I'm letting the nice horizontal lateral branches develop. I think a defoliation mid season will give wonderful results late this year.

Here is where i bought that maple several years ago. I'm pleased with what I have done with the material that started at the checkout at the local M&S.

Sunday, 19 February 2012

Animal Grazing

A lot of good collected material has been grazed by farm animals which creates a natural bonsai effect.

Some of us poor urban dwellers have to rely on more modest grazing.

My cat has been raised around me working on my bonsai and enjoys helping me. She also knows that if I am ignoring her ( or just not being attentive enough ) that attacking the nearest shrub will get her noticed.

Tuesday, 14 February 2012

Gordons Alive!!

Been watching my roots. The reduced root ball is starting to work now - although it has yet to fill its new pot - the active region can clearly be seen. Once of the nice things about Akadama is this ability to see the moisture level of the soil. The spring foliage is starting to transpire and draw up water.

The spring foliage is lovely on Deshojo's - I'm glad that I'm home this year so that I can appreciate it as it changes every day. Rather have a job though.

Deshojo - Its all about the colour.

The big Palmatum is well under way now and I've started to pinch buds already. I have a few decisions to make later on which branches will make the cut - nice to have a good selection to choose from. Last years work on increasing ramification was a success. This bonsai is very early in its development and is really only 1 node from the main structure. I hope to have it out to 3 nodes this year with more defined lateral branches and maybe some pads.

The Palmatum is pretty enough in its own right.

PS. With the maples now is a good time for Very Gentle wiring. I prefer to use lengths of lead soldering wire as weights to train branches. Its important to be doing this early before the new growth lignifies. Careful as the new growth is terribly delicate at this point.