This is the story so far of an Acer Palmatum bonsai project that was started from collected seed in 2001. Not all of the seeds that I planted at this time, grew into strong healthy plants. Many were quite weak and died off within a year or two. This one proved to be a notable exception. I am now 13 years into this project and it’s still has a long way to go.It has, incidentally, spent all of its life in a pot.
The first picture, which shows the autumn colour quite well, was taken in 2004.
This is it again in 2011. It had been growing in this larger pot for a number of years, when this picture was taken
In the early spring of 2012 t was transferred into its first bonsai pot. I have taken a number of air layers from this tree over the years
Spring of 2013, the trunk has been chopped back and there are lots of new buds emerging that will form the new leader.
Spring of 2014, the new leader has grown well and the chop mark has been trimmed back to the new trunk line.
Winter 2014, another seasons growth has thickened the leader considerably. It has just been cut back to allow winter storage in the greenhouse
Before the end of this winter I will cut it back again at the spot indicated by the red line in the next picture, and the new leader will be formed from the tiny shoot indicated by the arrow.
The autumn leaf colour in this shohin cotoneaster is the best I have ever seen it. A sign that it has been pretty cold here lately.
This is a recently acquired Bigei semi cascade pot, which has just joined my ever expanding collection. I just can’t have enough of these.
This is a new pot from Japan that I have recently added to my collection. It’s a nice unglazed rectangle with cloud feet from the Zenigo kiln. It measures, 19cm by 15cm by 8cm
I hope to transplant this kifu Japanese Yew into it, next year
This is my Chinese elm shohin that I have been developing for 2 years. It has quite an interesting story. I acquired this tree for £8.00 in the winter of 2012 in and end of season sale at a local DIY centre. I had previously looked at all their trees at the start of the season, and mentally selected this as the most promising because it had taper in the trunk. When I finally purchased it, it was the last one to go. I did nothing to it but kept it in the greenhouse all winter, half expecting it to die, which it almost did.
This is how it looks at the moment November 2014. Next year I will re-plant it in a slightly larger pot to speed up the ramification
At the end of that first winter, It was looking quite weak as the next picture shows. Most of the branches had dried up and died. I removed it from the pot, washed off the old soil and replaced it with a coarse mix of akadama and kiryu.
Within a few weeks it was beginning to show some signs of life as the next picture shows. All the dead branches were cut back and new ones were allowed to grow from the stumps
Here are some up to date record pictures of my Acer Shishishigira and my Acer Deshojo
The Shishishigira is quite a slow growing tree and has only change slightly in the 2 years I have had it but the number of buds has increased considerably this year with regular partial defoliation.
The Deshojo on the other hand has grown vigorously and there are lots of new shoots to develop branches from in the future.
This tree started it’s life 12 years ago as a 3 inch cutting. It was planted in the ground for seven years and chopped back twice in that period. The first picture shows how it looked in 2011 when it was dug up and re-planted in a plastic pot.
The second picture shows how it looks today (November 2014).Next year it will be transplanted into a nice pot.