Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Pinus Mugo

Mugo Pine after early spring repot, bud selecting and minor candle pinching. No major styling because pines are to be insulted once/twice per year. So will pinch more in the fall and style/see where I go with this next spring. Make me an offer, might sell.

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Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Crepe Myrtle Bonsai

Hey Ray here is my Myrtle after repot and trim.

But the one I was refering to was this one, do you still have it?

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Saturday, April 18, 2009

Spider Mites

I had a customer come by, a new comer to bonsai. He had received a gift, a bonsai juniper! He was concerned because his girlfriend had given it to him & he didn't want anything to happen to it. He had a lot of questions, I told him how to water, fertilize, trim & shape also that it would need to be re potted every 3 to 5 yrs. and to keep it outdoors.

He said will you look at it, it's in my car? When he got it out I could see it was infested with spider mites. The tell-tell signs were there, yellowing needles,the graying over all look of the tree. I took a blank sheet of paper & placed it under one of the branches & thumped the foliage. Sure enough you could see the mites scurrying about on the paper.

I'm not going to go into great detail about spider mites. I'm not going to tell you how to eradicate them because you can't! I will tell you how to get them under control. They have a very fast reproductive cycle. They lay eggs which hatch every 5 to 7 days so you need to spray them every 3 to 5 days to kill the adults & the newly hatched larvae. After 2 to 3 cycles you'd think you had taken care of the problem but alas a new crop of mites would be blown in on the next wind!

Be sure to read the labels and follow directions!!!

The best method of controlling them is a systemic insecticide. It is absorbed thru the root system & carried out to the rest of the tree. Orthene, isotox are good examples of systemics for mites. Malathion, diazion, & kelthane are good contact poisons for mites.

If you don't like using poisons there are oils & soaps which can be used. Summer oils are lighter than the traditional dormant oils used for winter. Summer oils can be used thru out spring & summer. Each is effective in smothering pests and their eggs. examples: sun spray ultra fine oil, volck oil spray. Soaps sprays: insecticidal soaps control insect pests by penetrating their cuticles,which causes their cell membranes to collaspse thereby causing dehyration resulting in death. Household dish detergent, 1 tablespoon per 1 gallon of water can be used to spray your trees, or you can purchase commerical soaps like "safe soap".

There is another preventive called "garett juice" a foliar spray but you can make your own 1 tablesoon each of : fish emulsion, liquid kelp, molasses, apple cider vinigar, added to a gallon of water.

Use what ever you choose to but remember to be vigilant thru out the year --happy spraying.
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Monday, April 13, 2009

Chinese Elm

Chinese Elm before and after repot.

This is what I potted it on:

I set a base layer of lava rock size 1/4th of an inch as drainer, followed by a layer of organic compost around the root system topped with worm castings. Then I filled the pot with a layer of my mix which is 1/8th -1/4th sifted lava/pine bark/Akadama and topped with a thin layer of 1/8th calcined clay for dressing.

I also trimmed all the twigs and left the 2-3 leaves per twig (which are the smallest) which took about 2 hours, to induce leaf reduction.

UPDATE 06-23-2009

Now that the tree has settled in the pot after the repot and has strong new growth, I wired all of the branches which took about 2 days (4 hours total). And took a nice pic.

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Tuesday, April 7, 2009


These are pomegranates that were dug from my raised bed in Feb 2009. They haven't been trimmed yet and were bare rooted & potted into these containers where they will remain for 1 year. In the mean time they will be trimmed & styled and next year they will be root pruned again and placed in a bonsai container.

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Sunday, April 5, 2009

Trident & Japanese Maples

Hi I'm sorry it took so long to post these pictures but I'm working from a new computer & new photo equipment but anyway these pics are of my japanese & trident maples that were dug from my raised bed in febuary 2009.

They were bare rooted & potted in lava rock a layer of compost along with worm castings & covered with more lava rock. Fertilizer cakes were used the last two weeks of March. I'll post new pics of more of my maples and twisted pomegranates,soon! Ray.

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