maandag 20 november 2017

Moving 4 bonsai project trees

Still young, but here are a few bonsai project trees I am growing in my garden for future fun.
bonsai young potentials !

All native, all started from seed, seedling or very very young material.

Prunus padus, or european Bird Cherry
Prunus avium, or european Wild Cherry or Sweet Cherry.
Aesculus Hippocastanum, or Horse Chestnut
Prunus domestica (insititia), or European Wild Plum

Now I've dug out a hedge along one side of my garden (replacing it with Hedera) I got room for other things. Just what I need, extra space ;-).

Power tool for carving

Today someone asked me if I learned to carve in a bonsai club?
I said 'no'.

I also said I first researched which (big) power tools were frequently used for bonsai carving. The weight, the wattage, varying speed, length and diameter of the shaft, price...

I ultimately found a carving tool that was almost twice as strong and at the same time twice as cheap.
1200Watts, varying speed, and 149 EURO.

Result was that a bonsai-friend was interested and got the same machine. Because he follows classes with Danny Use (the 'famous' bonsai center ginkgo in Belgium), it also drew Danny's attention so now he got one too and is impressed with the qualities of this power tool.

Isn't that nice, how an amateur can bring new stuff into the scene.

No, I don't get any royalties for posting this :)

vrijdag 3 november 2017

Rocks and stones

A few stones I collected this week whilst on holiday in the Walloon part of Belgium.
For future root-over-rock purposes with native trees.

zondag 29 oktober 2017

Malus - crab apple - fall 2017

Crab Apple; Malus.

Today versus a few years ago.
I like the progression so far.
It is still years away from a proper pot.

Larix Kaempferi fall 2017

Larix Kaempferi (japanese larch). 29th oct 2017.
In the front, a small slate with a local ironstone on top.

Bought somewhere between 2000-2002 as young raw material prepared for group planting. Aging for more than 15 years, and the current shape is a restyling from the first styling (not literati) since many years.

zaterdag 28 oktober 2017

Mushrooms !

Mushroom plantation...
Healthy soil, healthy tree.

Alder double-trunk progression

Today, this one also made another step forward. Last picture is the 'before'.

Alder, alnus glutinosa.

European Hornbeam progression

Today the european Hornbeam made another step forward. You cannot have doubts for too long, if you want progression. The look will now better fit the 'veteran tree' bonsai look I am aiming for. Last picture is the 'before'. A week after this, I did some carving on the 'new' top (see second picture)

Fall colours in Rowan Tree #2

Fall finally arrived last week in my little Rowan (Sorbus Aucuparia) tree.

maandag 23 oktober 2017

A picture I did not see earlier than today, about the bonsaitour in the city of Deinze (Belgium) on 27th oct. 2017 because of the 40th anniversary of the Flemish Bonsai Association (Vlaamse Bonsai Vereniging). Here I'm having a chat with one of the visitors to the tour, whist working on a prebonsai Alder. Fun, and fantastic weather that day.

zondag 22 oktober 2017

Hazel - update 22th oct 2017

Hazel (Corylus avellana).
collected early april 2015.
not yet ready for a slab or rough bonsai pot.

The image I am aiming for is a bushy low and broad canopy with natural look.

Hawthorn, removing the airlayer

Hawthorn, crataegus monogyna.

Airlayered in early march (still in wintertime, whilst repotting !) and removed today 22th oct 2017.
Back to life in a trainingpot. First year in this plastic pot and after that 2 years in big flat wooden box to strengthen the new roots.

maandag 16 oktober 2017

More Fall

Fall is not a boring season for a bonsaïsto.
It is an exciting time as well as a relaxing time. Exciting to see colours appear, to see leaves fall, to see buds preparing for winter, to see mushrooms and moss thrive.
And, a time to relax and look back on the growing season... has it resulted in enough growth, more branches. Following the development over the years is big fun. Even if you have mainly prebonsai and it takes years to build up trees before refining and maturing can even start.

I love fall. I love native species in fall.

Common Alder: 2 years in pot (of which 1 year in pond basket)

pretty good spreading of the branches

Another Common Alder: I really like the trunk shape and natural feel of the branch structure. I will love training this one in the years to come

again Common Alder: second year in pot. This one seems to develop a bit slower. The growth is not as strong as with the other Alders. Perhaps it needs more pot. 

European Rowan Tree (Sorbus Aucuparia). Harvested in april 2015. 
Since this year in proper bonsai pot, but needs a lot more ramification.

Small Rowan tree in Fall colours

The smallest one of my two (european) Rowan trees (Sorbus Aucuparia) in fall colour.
Never say native species can't compete with exotic species when it comes to fall colours.

maandag 9 oktober 2017

Birch and Field Maple in the fall

Silverbirch (Betula Pendula), 'homegrown' from seedling in 2008.
Field Maple (Acer Campestre), partly regrown and rebuilt from small prebonsai material

donderdag 21 september 2017

Two more cheap bonsai turntables

I allready fabricated a turntable from an old office chair, but to have one that can 'lift' a bit higher, I just bought a brand new kitchen bar chair, with adjustable seat height up to 80cm (31,5"). It cost me 23 EUR, that is nothing compared to 200 or 300 EUR for a 'real' bonsai-turntable.

From the package, assembled in 2 minutes (no screws), and then I could fix my new table top directly on the assembled frame. I used concrete plex board, and new boults which I sunk into the surface. Then I used a ecofriendly 'tar' to seal the cut edges and boults. To avoid damaging and rot of the working top I can simply lay on a vinyl top (maybe with velcro) or another smooth thin concrete plex board (0,5cm).

This cost me in total 35 EUR all in, an 1 hour work per table. I made an extra one for a bonsai friend.

update Winterflowering cherry

sept 2017, 21th

Update of my smallsize Prunus Subhirtella var. 'Autumnalis Rosea'. This is a winterflowering japanese ornamental cherry.
I have it since somewhere in the late nineties, as a small garden centre plant. It has never spent time in the ground, only in containers and bonsaipot.
It has been with many ups and equally many downs, it even suffered a near-death experience some years ago. Only these last few years it has really regained vigour. In 2016 I succesfully grafted it (with an original branch) and now it's on its way. Shape is obvious, the branches are there but they need thickening and ramification. I think in 2 to 3 years it will be presentabel, and in 3 to 5 years it will be good enough for modest exhibition level.

Now many flower buds are forming, with some allready opening. This will contiune for weeks and months, during fall and winter, right up to late winter sometimes.

maandag 4 september 2017

Update Common Privet - Ligustrum Ovalifolium

2nd year in pot, first year these seperate small groups were planted together to form 1 group.
Recuperated plants from my hedge (6 or 7years old then).
Keeping it simple, no wiring. Small size. Just clip and grow, clip and grow.
I think a slab will do, maybe in 2 years.

During the bonsai-tour of the Flemish Bonsai Association

Just some pictures of me with some fellow-bonsai clubmembers, during the bonsai-tour organised by the local memberclub 'De Leie' for the 40th anniversary of the VBV (Flemish Bonsai Association) in the city of Deinze, on 27 august 2017. The trees at our stop were all native species.