Thanks! I am, maybe from inexperience, more of a natural bonsai guy, going with the "gut-feeling" and what I see. I hope to learn more specifics and techniques here with time. My main group is "acacias", and as it is winter now, in SA I have to wait for Aug/Sep before I can get some seeds going again...I have visited Daves Garden site a few times in the past but decided to become a member recently because it is a really valuable source and nice to link up with other plant and animal (birdwatcher myself) nuts.
LittleThings, your bonsai plants are awesome! I've done only one and not truly a bonsai...just took a woody plant and made it into a tiny tree by continually trimming it's leaves/branches and it now has an impressive trunk size of approx. 1/2", this after about 5 yrs. Starting with one with tiny leaves to begin with really helps. Seeing the root formations is really a bonsai look that is impressive.
bugme, its all in the eye of the beholder! Its all about what you feel and for enjoyment after all. I am learning through mistakes, every day, but also and maybe more important I am learning about trees and plants and this cultivates a love for nature. Since I started, I have purchased many books, not on bonsai so much, but trees and birds, and cacti, etc, and all this makes every holiday special and fun, when I drive around I notice trees, etc. I also realize how little I do know, and this makes me want to learn more - and so on and so on. So its all about having fun - you will laugh at what I have tried. My plants may be funny to others, but to me they are special, they tell stories of places I have been or in some instances places I want to go. They represent a place in the world, and when I research their true origin, it brings that part of the world to me...
Hi Little Things. Nice to meet another ficus enthusiast. Here is one of my ficus which has developed aerial roots one of which is growing through a crack in the rock. I live in Spain on the Mediterranean sea so they thrive in the climate here. I have around 45 bonsais and also grow orchids and other exotic plants. You might say I am plant crazy!!
Finally here is my Lantana bonsai, I found the plant dying in my garden when I bought my house, ten years ago. Iit was in a very bad condition. I removed all the dead branches except one which I made into a Jin, and progessively nursed it back to health and new growth. Early summer it is covered in the yellow/orange flowers.
Nice Ikebana, Ficus spp are one of the most rewarding species. I got another one from Kwazulu-natal, which my DW brought on a business visit there via airplane. It's still small, I hope to plant it in some "kind of rock" with time (need to find the rock first. In nature, here, they sit on the vertical slope rocks, amazingly beautifull. My main loves are bonsai and succulents (I see one next to your last pic), we love aloe's and mesembs. I have about 50 species of bonsai in various development...mostly Acacia's and other SA trees. We had a really tough winter (for us) and the Olea (olive) suffered, which is strange, they occur naturally here...I am hoping he comes through.
I also have about 5 species of ficus seeds, I want to try out, in the next weeks...I tried before, but they died after germination due to the dry humidity conditions here and my incompetance...hopefully it will go better this time. Good luck with your wonderfull looking trees.
This is my Ficus in its 100+ yr. old pot. The Ficus is only a baby in the bonsai world and is only 4yrs. old...first time for transplanting it into a bigger pot.
I thought maybe I didn't do the pruning correctly because I was aiming for tall and narrow and most Ficus I see are shorter and kinda full in the middle. I see now it truly is in the eye of the beholder☺
Little_ things. I have two (I hope I spell this right) Boabab trees . Have you tried growing these. They are three summers old and one is larger than the other.One leafs out earlier also. I am tempted to cut the slower one back to see what happens to it. Prune the other, just a little, want to wait til sign is right so it won't die. Their names are Diop & Thiop after a friend I met at work.
I live in Iowa, so have to be aware of strong winds and violent storms for my outdoor bonsai. Thus I have rigged up a cart with wheels to keep them on and then roll it in the garage when weather is threatening.
Hi, I have around 50 bonsais and in January we had very high winds and lower than normal temperatures. I live in Spain zone 10a. One of my prize ficus benjamina had considerble damage - all the leaves on one side (facing the wind) dried up and some of the branches even died back. It is recovering but it has lost some key branches. It is now in a much more sheltered area of my garden. Here is a bougainvillea bonsai which I have had for about 8 years.
Thought you might like to see more of my trees. The grouping on the top left of the shelf is a ginkgo biloba the oldest surviving species from the age of the dinasaurs. Ginkgo leaves were found preserved in the stomachs of dinasaur remains found in many parts of the world.
ikebana-YOU HAVE A LANTANA BONSAI? OMG! lantana is a major pest here in australia,growing wild and taking over the bush land. Sorry but the sight of it discusts me. hehe! Guess it's not a problem there?
Tomarrow the sign will be right to prune to encourage growth, Watch out trees here I get the chance to prune them back without injuring them. Boabab tree here I come...I love to prune. My husband says my trees cringe when they see me coming with my shears. I love it except when the arthritus steps in, that slows me down but so far hasn't stopped me yet. I may have to look for a Lantana to work with. Found some little trees earlier in the week and got them planted, hope they live. Sign was for planting not pulling:>
I love both your Lantana and Bouganvillea bonsai - I often think that flowering plants pose one of the biggest challenges in the bonsai arena. I suspect that your climate is very like mine - hot dry summers and brief cool wet winters. South Australia is pretty much the only state in Australia where Lantana is not considered a weed - It is far too dry here for the plants to set seed and spread the way they do in our wetter states to the east.
You are right the climate here is as you describe. I enjoy the challenge of flowering bonsais. I also have a Murraya (Jasmine orange), azalea (needs protection in the summer), Nandina domestica, Pyracantha, and Cercis siliquastrum. Visited Adelaide many years ago and saw you have a medierranean type climate. Interested to see some of your bonsais when you have time.
For a start, you can check out this thread here: http://davesgarden.com/community/forums/t/788182/#new which I have updated recently. I have been a bit slack about showing my other trees as they are mostly still very young seedlings. I also have a bouganvillea which might make a good cascade in time, but I haven't really done any work on it yet.
Yes! New leash on life, so let's make it alive! LOL, how are you doing with your hobby/endeavor? Any new project? I've made a couple plantings, but still gathering info. And enjoying the learning process.
Maple trees are one of the best subject for bonsai. Who knows, one of these days, you can transform it into a specimen plant that you can really cherish! I've a cotoneaster that I potted up this early spring. I'll see about finding the thread when I potted up, and gather some new pix of the same plant to share in the near future.
lizh, I'm so glad you mentioned of Lantana. But, what have I missed? I went back to previous posting to look for Lantana specimen, but couldn't find it. Though, I can imagine the fibrous growing habit of Lantana can be fun to train into miniature form.
I've this tropical plant that looks like Lantana...though the leaves kind of coarse for an ideal bonsai specimen. But, I like the twisted branch, so I tried it anyway.
Oh BTW, where is Little_Things and other members that have contributed so much to this thread gone to? Please come back folks. Let's see your achievements over the years.