SOME NOTES AND THOUGHTS ABOUT BONSAI

A 'WILL' FOR OUR BONSAI

Some thoughts and options by Thomas L. Zane for your bonsai collection once you are no longer able to care for them: don't assume your relatives will know what to do with your trees, make specific request that if you should become ill a predetermined person should be called so that your trees do not suffer.  Specify in your will what you want done with your trees.


BEFORE and AFTER

A series of pictures of  "THE CLOUD a ficus nerifolia by Joe Samuels"
Read the story of Joe Samuels and his famous tree:
A Tribute to Joe Samuels
A Ficus Bonsai Story, An American Tropical First
This should be motivation to photograph your bonsai.


THE SCIENCE OF WATERING

what goes on when we water our trees and other potted plants...read more


GREEN ISLAND FICUS

Ever wonder about the difference between the rounded and pointed leaves?
Check out this website


LAYERING

There are various methods of layering or causing roots to form on a trunk or branch while it is still attached to the parent plant. All methods involve injuring the inner bark providing a medium at the point of injury into which new roots may grow.  READ MORE


SEAGRAPE LEAF REDUCTION

Reprinted with permission from Stone Lantern Bonsai Today Issue 77, stonelantern.com

How to reduce Seagrape leaves to fit our image of bonsai....  Read More


GLOSSARY WITH JAPANESE NOTATION

A glossary of bonsai-related terms in Japanese with search terms for pronunciation and meanings.


GROUP or FOREST PLANTINGS

The group setting, or forest, has an uneven number of trees, usually of the same style and species with variation in size. Here are some simple facts from two important Bonsai textbooks that can be helpful when making a forest planting.  read more...

HEALTHY or VIGOROUS?? - post from Bonsai Tonight by Jonas Dupuich​

"One of the more important distinctions to make when evaluating bonsai is whether or not a tree is ready to be worked on.  Weak trees need to regain strength and sick trees need to regain health before any major work is done. This goes for detail wiring, heavy bending or major cutback. Repotting is an exception as it may be necessary to repot a tree to help it regain its health.   If you’re looking to do major work, making sure that the tree is growing vigorously will help it recover from the stresses of wiring or foliage reduction...."  read more


THRIPS

An annoying and damaging pest affecting mainly Ficus Benjamin but there are many varieties of thrips that affect both landscape plants and crops. Our bonsai are affected by Cuban Laural Thrips: Gynaikothrips ficorum,  and the Weeping Fig (Benjamina) Thrips: Gynaikothrips uzel.  Unfortunately when trying to go "green" and use only environmentally friendly pesticides, thrips cause us to get out the toxic kinds such as Bayer's®. To avoid toxic chemicals, cut off the affected leaves to control the population and watch for further infestation.  Another type of thrip that is a concern for us is the Chili Thrip: Scirtothrips dorsals which will affect, among others, Schefflera arboricola, Pyracantha angustifolia (firethorn), Acer (Maple), Podocarpus, and Tamarind.  For an in-depth article on Weeping Fig Thrips Read MoreFor an article on Chili Thrips, Read More here


SLIME MOLD by Marty Mann, ​from an article in the Lake Charles Bonsai Society Newsletter, May 2016

A formation of a dark jelly-like mass which spreads over the surface of your potted material or in the dark depths of your nursery stock is a most disconcerting mess. This is called slime mold and is actually a tiny, plant-like parasite which reproduces by forming mold spores... Read More


USING FUNGICIDES TO CONTROL BONSAI DISEASES by Nina Shishkoff, PhD

"Although it's nice to control pests organically, it isn't always possible...." Read More


PEST MANAGEMENT A Compilation of Information by Carolyn Carver

 The information was originally compiled by Carolyn Carver for her own use. It was presented as a seminar at the Bonsai Societies of Florida convention in West Palm Beach in May 1999. Mrs. Carver wants to remind all readers that all chemicals should only be applied in strict accordance with recommended rates and only on labeled pests and plants. (ed note: does not address organics)   READ THIS and MORE ABOUT PEST CONTROL


HIBISCUS BONSAI

How to take advantage of a bonsai that flowers throughout the year (in the south) Read More


AZALEA BONSAI

"In the world of bonsai, there are few things more beautiful than an Azalea bonsai in full bloom. No other plant can boast a floral display to equal that of a healthy Azalea.  There are, however, a few simple secrets that will allow just about anyone who is interested to grow a beautiful Azalea bonsai."  Read More​   or go to Growing Azaleas in Florida


HEAT and HIGH TEMPERATURE DAMAGE

When the temperature rises, our trees need to be protected from the hot sun.  We must consider water and root problems and other stresses during times of high heat...

Read More @ Bonsai Banter  and Root Heat in Containers by Andy Walsh


HOW DO I MAKE MY BONSAI TREE THICKER?

There are several techniques, depending on the variety of tree, growing in the ground or large pots, sacrifice branches, tourniquet, splitting the trunk, scarring....Read More


TRANSPIRATION

Transpiration is the process by which moisture is carried through plants from roots to small pores on the underside of leaves, where it changes to vapor and is released to the atmosphere. Transpiration is essentially evaporation of water from plant leaves. Transpiration also includes a process called guttation, which is the loss of water in liquid form from the uninjured leaf or stem of the plant, principally through water stomata.... How much water to plants transpire?  Atmospheric factors affecting transpiration.... read more    Causes of Guttation


BLENDED TREES

Blended bonsai are created by binding five or more very young trees together to create one bonsai....  read more 


BASIC BONSAI STYLES

There are 5 basic bonsai styles and varieties of each...  read more


KUSAMONO

From two Japanese words meaning 'grass thing', this was originally intended to accompany bonsai trees but has developed into its own art form.  When done properly it reflects the season of the display.  ...read more



PHOTOGRAPHING YOUR BONSAI

What better way to preserve the history of your tree, or better yet have a print on your wall.   Your bonsai photos should be well organized on your computer so you can easily find them. 

http://www.artofbonsai.org/tutorials/index.php

https://www.bonsaiempire.com/blog/photographing-bonsai

https://www.bonsai-bci.com/index.php/bonsai-appreciation-articles-menu/lew-lessons/bonsai-techniques/photographing-bonsai


JAPANESE BLACK PINE - IN FLORIDA

Japanese Black Pines can flourish in Florida just by following a schedule designed for our climate.  The article was written by Bill Storke when he lived in South Florida as a member of the Lighthouse Bonsai Society.  ...read more

TROPICAL BONSAI SCHOOL

Three articles by Art Cid describing his participation in Pedro Morales' Tropical Bonsai School over three years. 


HOW TO PROPERLY WIRE-SECURE BONSAI

Articles from Bonsai Tonight "...even subtle movement can weaken...or break fine roots..."  

All three articles provide valuable instruction to properly secure your tree. 

...read more    a downloadable version

wiring technique when repotting     

repotting a Trident Maple  - skills applicable to most trees