Tuesday, 30 April 2013

A Little European Hornbeam

This little Hornbeam (Carpinus betulus) was grown from a self set seedling I found in my garden a few years ago.  The leaves are still a bit large, but as ramification builds, that should sort itself out.

Friday, 26 April 2013

It's not all glamour

Bonsai is not all about working with nice trees.  Today was much more mundane.  Scrubbing and cleaning pots, potting up and labeling the next generation of bonsai are somewhat less glamorous, but nonetheless essential tasks.

Pots scrubbed and cleaned

Japanese Larch potted on into larger pots

Japanese Hawthorn seedlings pricked out and potted up

Elm and Trident Root cuttings

Wednesday, 24 April 2013

Salix yesoalpina

Not strictly a bonsai in the classical sense, but nevertheless a tree in a pot.  This little plant came to me from the Chairman of our bonsai club, who could not remember the actual species.  A quick question on the Wee Trees Bonsai Forum and Paul from the Swindon & District Bonsai Society came up with the answer.

It's an alpine willow, Salix yesoalpina. The natural growth habit of this tree is to grow ground hugging, naturally cascading over rocky terrain.  You see it here in spring, with the catkins just emerging.  In the summer it is quite uninteresting, and the leaves are quite large.

Monday, 22 April 2013

Cork Bark Maple on the way back

This is one of my favourite trees, which sadly sustained some major damage during last years hailstorm .
It lost two major branches and part of the apex was so badly damaged that it had to be removed.
It has just joined the rest of my maples in putting out leaves and will now get a full season of unrestricted growth, ready for restyling next spring.

Sunday, 21 April 2013

Walter Pall Bonsai Adventures: Congratulations to the master thief

Please read this article on Walter's website and share.  Those scumbags should never be able to show, brag about or sell this tree.

Walter Pall Bonsai Adventures: Congratulations to the master thief

European Hornbeam - capinus betulus

I thought I get a picture of this tree just before the buds break.  The tree was collected as a bare stump back in 2001, with the centre part already quite rotten.  I simply removed the rotten wood with a wire brush, no additional carving was done.  All the branches were grown from scratch.

The first photo shows the tree 2 years after collection, just before I cut back most the growth to start training it as a bonsai.

Ten years on 

Saturday, 20 April 2013

Two weeks on

That's what I like about Maples, two weeks after first leafing out it  already needs a good trim.

Thursday, 18 April 2013

Larches in Spring

I think that the Larches are only surpassed by Maples in the splendour of their spring foliage.  A few shots from today to capture the moment.

Wednesday, 17 April 2013

Korean Hornbeam just coming into leaf

This Korean Hornbeam is looking much happier this year.  It had suffered from the bad winter three years ago, so I had potted it into a larger pot and given it free growth for the last two years in order to allow it to regain some vigour.  Here it is now,thoroughly pruned to rebuild the ramification of the branches, and back in a smaller pot.

Tuesday, 16 April 2013

Tony Remington Bonsai pots

I am a big fan of Tony's bonsai pots.  The colours and textures he produces are just amazing. I will have to get a few more of those.  His website is at http://www.bonsaipotsuk.com/ , well worth a visit.

Here are the few I own, shame my trees and photographic skills don't do the pots the justice they deserve.

Monday, 15 April 2013

Nice to see some trees back on the benches

How good to get some Bonsai back on the display benches.  Only ones still under cover are any recently repotted trees and the Maples. I'd hate to get a late frost on those new delicate leaves.

Sunday, 14 April 2013

Greenhouse finally cleared and cleaned

Spent the last two days getting the small Greenhouse (otherwise known as the Tardis) cleared and cleaned in order to make space for the this years seedlings and cuttings.  It always amazes me how much stuff can be overwintered in a 6 foot x 8 foot space. Believe it or not, all of the plants (plus quite a few more that are now back on the display benches) in these pictures were in there for the last four months.

Saturday, 13 April 2013

Some random photos of my smallest trees

The sun was out for a few hours this morning, so I took just a couple of random shots of the spring foliage emerging on some of my smallest trees.  Enjoy!

Sliver Birch - betula pendula

Chinese Elm - ulmus parvifolia

English Elm - ulmus minor

Friday, 12 April 2013

Things are finally starting to move

Temperatures are finally rising (if still slowly) and some of the deciduous trees are starting to leaf out.

My maple has been in a cold greenhouse over the winter.  I felt I should give it a bit of TLC after the rubbish summer we had last year.  It has been swelling the buds for a few weeks now, but a couple of days of sunshine has finally done the trick.  This is a bog standard Acer palmatum, but I love the colour when the leaves first appear in the spring.