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Bonsai Blog

Thomas Summer Bonsai Updates

Wow is hot here in my neck of the woods. We dodged most of the summer without very many 100+ degree days, but now they’re here and looks like they’ll be here for some time too.

During this time of the year it’s really hard for me to do too much in the way of bonsai, simply because they slow down too and other than the three times a day watering, that’s really about all they need.

I just finished the decandling on my JBPs and am I glad this year wasn’t that hot during that time like it usually is. It allowed me more time to really make sure everything was done right rather than hurry up and get it done before I die in this heat. ๐Ÿ™‚

Here’s a pic of one of the decandeled JBPs and you can probably notice that I left one branch without decandling it.

That candle will play into my styling for this tree and needed to be left to grow out longer.

As for the other JBPs, they are popping new buds like crazy. I’ll have my hands full this fall when it comes time to pull needles. ๐Ÿ™

As for the JBP seedlings, you can see here they are coming along really well. They are finally starting to harden up their little trunks and should be ready for their first trunk wiring at repotting time next spring. At that time they will also be individually put into collanders for the start of their new life as bonsai. The collanders will help thicken up the trunks on these little guys. They will stay in the collanders for about six years. Of course during this time they will also be repotted as needed.

The little guys above are just regular JBP seedlings while the ones below are Mikawa JBP.

The Mikawa variety has a more flaky type bark giving it a more aged look than other varieties of JBP. For whatever reason the Mikawa seedlings seemed to be more robust the than the others. Many of the others seemed weak while the Mikawas looked good from the get go.

If you can recall from one of my earlier blogs, somewhere around March 16th I believe, you’ll see this Chinese Elm that I mentioned that had a serious scale infestation a few years back.

Because of that I got a lot of die back on the back side as you can see in the photo above. But with some loving care and again a good fertilizing regiment, you can see that I’m getting some good new growth to fill in the infested area.

I really love the Chinese elm, but they can be a lot of work at times just to keep them looking more like a bonsai than an upscale weed. ๐Ÿ™‚

In my last blog I mentioned that I would show you an update of one of the six junipers that I recently worked on. That would be juniper 2 the cascade with the large pot. If you’re new to the blog here or if you can’t remember which one it is, take a quick run over to juniper # 2.

In order to keep the tree in proportion with the trunk, it needed to be shortened.

I saw a good area with a nice flow in the trunk and that’s where I made my cut. Now it will have a good chance after repotting it next spring into a much smaller cascade pot, to become a really nice shohin juniper.

You always have to keep the future of the tree in mind, and always think about keeping things in proportion. You can be a beginner, but your work can look outstanding if you do it right. That also goes for the pot, don’t put the tree in oversize pot, but keep it also in proportion to the height and width of the tree.

As I finish up here, I see little Bailey has found a nice place in the shade to try and keep somewhat cool.:-)

See you next time.
Thomas J.

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