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Growing Bonsai

July 28, 2013

I love Adam from Adam’s art. Wonderful human being, with kind heart and good sense of humor. Not to forget a vast knowledge base of bonsai.

I liked here how he turned cheap nursery material into good prebonsai and his advice on growing trunks.

Adam's Art and Bonsai Blog

So…you’re at a store or nursery and you see a plant that is advertised as a bonsai. It’s really just a little stick in a pot (it doesn’t look like that to you at the time, its only after you’ve gone home and searched “bonsai” online does it occur to you that this is what you have) and you buy it, or a dofferent scenario: your great uncle on yo’ mammas side gives you a “gift” (I don’t ever suggest giving bonsai as gifts; its like giving a puppy as a gift. In fact, if I get a call from a prospective customer I will grill them about what their intended purpose in buying a tree is and try to talk them out of a sale if the tree is intended to be a gift.) bonsai. However way you get this tree, you’ve decided to give this bonsai thing a…

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From → Beginners corner

  1. Not a comment, but a question.
    I purchased a 2yr old Brush Cherry starter plant thru the mail this past week. I planted the tree in a regular pot a day after I received it. Well now the leaves are droopy and limp. I watered and fed it after it was potted. Does anyone have any suggestions on how to revive this poor young starter.

    Thank You

    • David, The most important things is first to tell me where you are. Second, in what soil did you plant it? Did you disturb the roots? You never fertilize a sick plant, or newly transplanted one…maybe you can add stimulants but not fertilizer. Again if you have a root bound plant with loose new soil around the roots ball, the water will run all around the root ball and not penetrate the root ball, causing the plant to dry. Did you put your plant in the shade is another thing to consider. And the last thing that can affect the health of your plant is over watering causing the roots to rot. Try to sort this problems and perhaps you can put the tree in a dome, created by clear plastic to increase the humidity, but do not over water it.

  2. Im in the USA, nw Kentucky. I put the starter in a mix of Aoki blend with potting soil, probably a bad combination because soil is really damp. And yes I soaked repotted tree in Mircle Gro fertilizer for about 5 mins. I took the starter out of the damp soil and put it in a training pot filled with just Aoki, misted it and set it back to see what will happen. As for the roots I went in and separated the root system to be able to spread roots in a bonsai pot and wire it down. That is when I saw the leaves responding in a negative manner in just a couple of days. So now its just a wait and see situation on the poor little starter Brush Cherry. But any advice from you would really be helpful.


    • OK I get it now…Maybe for the future you can keep this in mind…when transplanting trees from the ground to pots this is what I do.
      1 I do it in the correct season…and the best time for me is early spring, That said I transplant tropical almost any time when it is warm, but not too hot.
      2 I remove all large roots that have no feeder roots…they dont really help much…even some that dont fit in the nebari, and arrange them…Tap root is also removed.
      3 I use disprin but water the plants after repot….dont have anything else.
      4 I plant in pure river sand…washed and sieved…large particles…Learned that in Japan…and get best results with this method. If you plan to grow it in a large pot…plant it in sand in a small pot…when the tree recovers and it is growing well, transplant it without disturbing the roots into the bigger pot in a more organic mix. I also use plastic or tile under the tree and wire it to the tile.
      5 I remove most of the leaves …even all of them…always…trim branches too. If you disturb the roots do that…roots take in water and leaves evaporate it. You have disturbed the balance and as a result your tree can dry.
      6 put the tree in the shade…no winds!…
      7 Dont overwater..
      8 I put a plastic dome over the tree….just a large clear packet…that acts like a green house.
      What you can do now is maybe remove some or all the leaves if you have transplanted within the last week. Ere the leaves falling off or stay on the tree??? Oyakata told me that if they stay on it is a bad sign…put plastic over it…and keep it in the shade.
      If you repotted it long time ago…over a month….control the watering…dont over water…let the soil dry and then water very well.
      Hope your BC recovers.

    • David, did you remove some leaves or branches? If you disturb the roots reduce the leaves always to reduce transpiration,

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