A Little Routine Maintenance on my Zelkova Shohin

The mature leaves on my 2 zelkova shohin are a little bigger and more numerous than last year and are preventing light from reaching the interior of the branches, they are also inhibiting the production of new buds. Time for some defoliation. I have never done this to a zelkova before, so I will be erring on the safe side, although I have heard that they can be fully defoliated without any problem.

Zelkova#1 before and after



Zelkova#2 before and after




Gardenia (Update)

My shohin gardenia, which was re-potted earlier this year is now firing on all cylinders again. No flowers yet though.


Some of the older leaves are getting quite big with all the fertilizer its had. It will be due for a trim shortly

Deshojo Maple in Summer

Here is a recent picture of my shohin deshojo maple. As I am a newcomer when it comes to developing maple bonsai, I took advice earlier this year from experienced club members on the techniques to be applied to increase ramification and reduce the internode length between buds. I have been pinching the extension growth and partially defoliating the tree at regular intervals. It seems to be working. Still a long way to go though.



Tosui Rectangular Pot

Have I mentioned that I love Tosui pots? Here is another recent acquisition. A small unglazed rectangle, with what I think is a slip decoration on all four sides





Cork Barked Elms in Summer

Here is a summer record shot of my shohin cork barked elm. It has suffered a slight infestation from red spider mites this year but it is under control now.


Here it is with its little brother. The tree on the right was taken as a cutting from the lower right branch of the tree on the left in the spring of 2012. Most of the growth on the cutting that you see in this pictures has occurred in the last 12 months


Close up of the branch structure, not bad for 2 years 3 months.


This is the same tree last spring in a 3 inch pot


Some Rooted Branches

Here are some branches, pruned from my bonsai in 2012, which have rooted well and are beginning to look quite good. When I am trying to strike cuttings from thicker branches, I wrap the cut end  with sphagnum moss and secure it tightly in a pot with coarse akadama. I find that this improves my success rate

The first one was pruned from my procumbent juniper  and has just been re-potted this week



Nice pot by Peter Krebs. Next job will be to wire the trunk and thin out the foliage. I am thinking about a literati style for this one


This is the parent tree


This is a little thuga occidentalis


This is the parent tree


Root over Rock Juniper (Update)

My root over rock shohin juniper, Which at the start of the year had no apex is filling out nicely with the fine weather we have had this year. This is a reminder of how it looked in March of this year.

juni 2

And This is how it is looking today 21/07/2014







I will  do some refinement on the foliage, later in the year


Thuga Occidentalis Bonsai

This is a Thuga Occidentalis that I have been working on for about 10 years, That makes it one of my oldest home grown trees. It may never be a prizewinner but it is one of my early learning trees and for that reason it will always be special to me. The first picture shows how it looked shortly after it was dug from my garden in 2004


In 2005 I decided to cut it back to a single trunk. I left 2 rather large stumps which were eventually carved into a deadwood feature. I have to say that if I was starting this tree now I would probably have done it very different and gone for a multi trunk image.


This tree is quite vigorous and for several years I simply sheared the foliage with scissors. By 2011, it had filled out well but the foliage pads had begun to look like pom-poms or the cloud pads you see on garden trees


In 2012, when the next picture was taken I was attempting to make the foliage pads look more natural and this work is still ongoing


I am planning to do some major work on this tree over the next week to further improve the silhouette and to make the deadwood feature more natural. I will post some more pictures when its done