Saturday, October 31, 2009

How to Grow Bonsai Tree: How to Care Your Bonsai Tree : Bonsai Maintenance

Maintaining a bonsai garden is fun and easy with these tips from a bonsai garden professional.

Bio: Mike Hansen, owner of Midwest Bonsai, has been growing, caring, selling, and instructing others in bonsai care for years. Mike is an expert bonsai master.
Duration : 0:3:40

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My bonsai tree, a Mimosa Acacia, doesn’t have a real trunk like it shows in the picture, is it supposed to?

From email:

I have been growing this bonsai tree for 5 months and all it has is small leaves. Not even real branches just branches that look like stems. What the leaves are growing on is just one thin stem.
Right now it is winter and I don’t know whether to put it away in a warm place, but there won’t be any sunlight or just keep it near the window with the window closed.
Is something wrong with my bonsai?

How To Take Proper Care of Your Bonsai Tree...
During the Winter months – once nightly lows begin aproaching the 40 degree mark, it is time to bring your indoor bonsai inside. Do not change the location of your tree suddenly, the move should be done gradually over a period of several weeks. Bring it in for a few hours the first time, slowly increasing the time it spends indoors until it becomes aclimated to its new environment. The ideal indoor location is on a window sill facing south. A northern exposure will work, but it's necessary the use grow lights to provide sufficient light to keep your bonsai healthy. Four to six hours of sunlight per day should be enough to keep your bonsai tree healthy and happy
Watering Your Bonsai Tree – Watering of your bonsai must never be neglected. Apply water when the soil appears dry — never allow the soil to become completely dry. If your bonsai is receiving full sun, it may be necessary to water at least once a day. This schedule may vary with the pot size, type of soil and type of bonsai tree you own. Evaluate each tree’s water requirements and adjust your watering schedule to accomodate it. It is a good idea to use a moisture meter until you get to know the requirements of your bonsai tree. Watering should be done with a watering can or hose attachment which should dispense the water in a soft enough manner as not to disturb the soil. Water should be applied until it begins running out of the holes in the bottom of your pot. Read more!

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Bonsai Tree Carving Demonstration

Graham Potter shows some basic bonsai carving techniques on a giant hornbeam.

Duration : 0:9:57

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Tuesday, October 27, 2009

My little keepsake azalea tree/ plant died is there anyway to bring it back to life?

From emailing:

I have it in a pot inside. Would it do better if I transplant it outdoors? Should I fretilize it or anything I know they like the acid based food.Help I have a purple thumb and I want so badly to have pretty plants and stuff! :)

First make sure if it is dead. Take a small branch and snap it. If it is dry it is dead if it bends instead of snaps in two then you might be able to save it. Please put it in the yard. Buy some root hormone, Walmart or Lowes use it according to directions, while you’re there buy some Miracid for acid loving plants.–pi-1335058.html

When you are ready to remove the plant from the pot be very careful. Check the roots to see if any of them are white and hairy, if they are then it’s still alive.

Use this link for care instructions.

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Monday, October 26, 2009

Air Layering Resources

Bonsai Bark did a nice series in the past couple of months on air-layering. If you have mature yard trees, a well-developed branch you need to remove, or would like the chance to start over with your nebari, then air-layering is definitely something to look into. Here’s the links:

A Simple Air-layering Technique Part 1

A Simple Air-layering Technique Part 2

A Simple Air-layering Technique Part 3

Here’s an explanation of the process and why it works over at EverGreen Garden Works: What is Air Layering?

Some other resources:

Layering Techniques for Bonsai

Ground Layering at Bonsai4Me

Airlayering by the Texas Agriculture Extension Office

If you have any other resources about air layering and it’s relationship with bonsai, send me the links and I’ll add them to this post.

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How to Grow Bonsai Trees : How Often to Water your Bonsai Trees : Tips Watering Bonsai

Learn special watering instructions are needed to properly care for your bonsai tree, in this free video.

Expert: Mike Hansen

Bio: Mike Hansen, owner of Midwest Bonsai, has been growing, caring, selling, and instructing others in bonsai care for years. Mike is an expert bonsai master.

Duration : 0:0:54

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Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Can a bonsai tree be kept inside?

From emailing:

I am growing the tree from Jack Pine seeds. The booklet I bought said to grow it outdoors, but it said on the cover that it could be kept on a desk. I am just making sure I don’t kill the poor little tree.

Also, Can I just let it grow naturally? Sure, it wouldn’t technically be a bonsai tree, but I don’t like the idea of manipulating a bady tree just for some weird form of art.

Thank you.

"Bonsai" is translated "tree in a pot", so a bonsai can be made from nearly ANY species of tree. It is designed to be a miniature tree in nature. Some species can be kept inside and some MUST be kept outside. A Jack pine MUST be kept outside so it can go dormant in the winter. Where do you live? That is important to know.

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Monday, October 19, 2009

Bonsai Tree pictures

The word Bonsai is Japanese and literally translated it means planted in a container. Basically Bonsai is a collection of techniques to grow, train and care for a tree in order to shape it into a miniature but naturally and old looking tree. Throughout the ages Bonsai has evolved from plants being grown in containers into a well respected form of art.

Duration : 0:4:46

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Sunday, October 18, 2009

What is the best kind of bonsai tree should I get and why?

Looking to get a Bonsai tree. But what kind do i get and where should i get it? there are, Junipers, Ficus, Pines/Palms, and other Unique Trees.

Junipers cost less and won’t kill you if they die.

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Friday, October 16, 2009

Pollution free house with Natural Plants: Grow them and breathe freely

There are some natural plants which can fight pollution inside the house, which many people are not aware about. Instead they unnecessarily try to clean their houses using vacuum cleaners and cleaning solutions which are harmful and costly.

In spite of using these modern equipments we find we are not free from diseases, dirt and dust which contaminate the air around us.

When compared to the vacuum cleaners, plants do not make noise like them. Maintenance of a plant is very cheap but at the same time we will have to shed many dollars to maintain a vacuum cleaner...

The best way to control pollution at home is through these ten plants which can be bought.

1) Feston Rose Plant :


Feston rose plant

(Photo by parkseed)

A lovely and low maintenance indoor plant which can be considered is the Lantana camara or the Feston rose plant. The uniqueness of this plant is that it produces numerous flowers which have a variety of colors.

This plant has a tendency to endure blazing heat or heavy winds. It can survive even with less water and in salty conditions. The leaves of these plants give out a very pleasing and strong fragrance, which leaves the house smelling fresh and also removes impurities from the air.

2) The Devil’s ivy:


Devil’s ivy

(Photo by jayjayc)

The other name for Devil’s ivy is the Golden Pathos and the scientific name is Epipiremnum Aureum. The leaves of the plant are very striking, they are marbled and the colors of the leaves are gold, which is true to the name of the plant. The Devil’s ivy is a very fine looking vine plant.

The plant flourishes and grows even if they are not taken care. The common air pollutants like the benzene, carbon monoxide and formaldehyde is controlled by this plant, it is the best natural way to purify the air around and in the house. The plant grows downward, so it is grows at its best when kept on a ridge. This plant should be consumed internally, even by the pet dog.

3) Phalaenopsis:



(Photo by mendelu)

This indoor plant has the most adorable flowers which are white and pink flowers. The leaves are fleshy which can be seen at the bottom of the plant and they are less in number also. The plant has a rhizome which almost looks like a stem.

This lovely plant should be kept inside the house under artificial light, because they cannot bear the light and the heat of the sun. The flowers add to the appearance of the place and the plant also purifies the air around the house. The plant is small in size, but the flowers are quite big and wonderful.

4) The English Ivy:


English Ivy

(Photo by eco-friendly-promos)

The scientific name for this plant is Hedera Helix. People who have pets at home are recommended to grow these plants because they have a capacity to remove pollutants like the fecal particles and formaldehyde aerosols. The house can be kept free from harmful contaminants.

The leaves of the English Ivy differ in shape, size and color for each plant because there are many species and they require a large space to grow and lot of care has to taken while growing these plants.

These plants can be grown in the bright sun but they should not be exposed to direct sunlight. The soil has to be quite dry or well drained to grow the English ivy and extra care has to be taken when growing them inside the house because they are poisonous.

5) The Parlor Ivy:


Parlor Ivy

(Photo by mgonline)

The other name for Parlor Ivy is heartleaf Philodendron and the scientific name is Philodendron Scandens. They are very beautiful looking and also cleans the impure air inside the house. The leaves of these plants are heart shaped and dark green in color, that why they are names as heartleaf Philodendron. The leaves are so beautiful looking that they can captivate anyone looking at it.

These climbing plants are very easy to maintain and grow very easily. They filter the chemicals which are dangerous and unsafe inside the house and keep the air around fresh and clean to breathe.

6) The African Violets:


One of the most beautiful and lovely indoor plant are the African Violets. The scientific name for African violets is Saintpaulia. The Africa Violets have lovely violet flowers which make the plant look very attractive and appealing to the eye. This plant makes the house look pleasing and fresh also.

To grow this beautiful plant, a leaf cutting will do. They are available in many colors, sizes and shapes. They require only a certain amount of light and heat. These plants tend to get infected by the scale like plant eating insects called the pathetic mealy bugs, so great care has to be taken.

7) The Christmas cactus:


Christmas cactus

(Photo by bombippy)

This plant blossoms during Christmas, and is considered a Christmas gift. This plant doesn’t resemble the Christmas tree or a cactus.

The silky flowers blossom in different colors pink, violet, red, orange and purplish red. The leaves are sharp and look pointed and lobed. The Christmas cactus requires good light and water to survive. It has a Y shape cutting which makes it look beautiful and attractive also.

8) The Yellow Goddess:


The yellow flower which is found in the plant makes the plant look so attractive that we feel that it is blessed by the Goddess of the color yellow. The name is so significantly give to this plant.

The flower is shaped like a trumpet and the base of the flower is green in color, they look so striking that we feel like gazing at them. The size of the flower varies from very small to large ones according to the different hybrid.

After planting this plant, within six to seven weeks we can find the growth which looks like a beautiful bulb shape. This plant requires light but not the sunlight direct from the sun. This plant looks very attractive in the house because it looks very small but the lovely yellow flowers grow quite large.

9) The Garlic vine:


The scientific name given to this plant is Mansoa alliacea. The specialty of this plant is that the leaves and the flowers when crushed give out a smell of the garlic and the onion. People who love onion and garlic can grow them.

This plant has got medicinal values. The garlic also consists of medicinal values to cure many health issues. The flowers, root and the leaves can be treated for many ailments like cold, sore throat, fever and breathing problems.

There is a myth among people that it is a good luck plant and sends away all the bad luck from the house. The flowers are bell shaped and lavender colored. The garlic vine is a plant which has good medicinal values and purifies the air around the house also.

10) The Peace Lily:


The peace lily

(Photo by movingtoanapartment)

The name given to this plant is very suitable because they have stunning white flowers. The color white is always considered as the color of peace and harmony. The scientific name of this plant is Spathiphyllum. The beautiful flower surrounds the axis and is round in shape.

The plant grows very easily and they have flowers which grow from the bottom of the plant which makes the plant look more beautiful. The flowers feel smooth and leathery.

This plant requires temperate or low light to grow well. The soil has to be wet or dampish and direct sunlight can be avoided to save the plant from sunburns. Another quality of this plant is that it removes the dangerous effects of toluene, xylene and benzene. These are easily found in the nail polish removers, paints used at home, solvent solutions and adhesives which we frequently used harmful things. These harmful pollutants are removed when we plant the Peace Lily at our houses to improve our health.

To retain the freshness and healthy environment, any of these ten plants can be bought and planted.

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Thursday, October 15, 2009

How to Grow Bonsai Trees : How to Make your Own Bonsai : Bonsai Lessons for Beginners

Just getting started in bonsai? This video with tips for beginners will help you learn how to grow bonsai trees.

Expert: Mike Hansen

Bio: Mike Hansen, owner of Midwest Bonsai, has been growing, caring, selling, and instructing others in bonsai care for years. Mike is an expert bonsai master.

Duration : 0:3:35

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can you grow a bonsai tree from another bonsai?

ok i have a bonsai tree but i would like to make a second one. its a ficus and i have had it for almost a year now so its about 4 years old but i dont know if it is possible to make a second tree with it. if you could help then please do. thanks!

You can propagate trees into bonsais either from standard or previously bonsaid trees, though you’ll likely have more vegetative growth from a plant like a Ficus that is not previously bonsaid. That said, many Ficus are fairly easy to propagate, usually I find the air layering technique to be the most succesful. Choose a reasonably mature piece of stem, either the previous year’s growth, or current years that’s a few months old. This involves making a cut an inch or so long on part of the stem, just lifting up some of the surface bark – it doesn’t need to be totally removed from the plant, though can be lifted, using something to keep it from sealing back up, like a little match stalk etc. You then start surrounding this part of the stem with something like sphagnum moss, and enclosing this by using some string tied around it. Adding some hormone rooting gel or powder will encourage rooting, before you cover it with moss.

Keep the sphagnum moist, enclosing within a tied down pieve of plastic, and you should start to see roots forming into it, from the Ficus stem. If the moss is too wet, it can cause some rotting, so beware of this.

When there is a good root system that’s formed, you can cut this piece of your plant away from the parent, using a sterilized knife, just below the area that is wanted, and immediately above your parent plant’s leaf buds, where it will subsequently grow shoots from.

Keep your new cutting enclosed in a polythene/plastic cover, to help preserve humidity levels, and plant into a well draining potting soil. Once more fully rooted, it can be fertilised, and managed as you would your other bonsai.

Otherwise you can propagate Ficus from seeds, produced by plants that flower and are pollinated – your current plant may not be at this stage at its current age. It doesn’t matter if the seed comes from a currently bonsaid plant or not, its genetic material will be the same, and it will grow according to the prevailing conditions.

Hope this helps.

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Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Garden for the Elderly

A garden for the elderly should seek to help to compensate for some of the problems that arrive as we get older, from lack of energy and mobility, to failing eyesight. With wide, paved areas, the garden uses a range of materials, and has a pergola, raised beds and a raised pool. The pond and many of the beds are edged with seating so that they can be enjoyed from close at hand. A bird bath, bird table and the inclusion of plants to attract bees and butterflies bring nature to the garden.

garden for the elderly

The things you should consider for a garden designed for elderly are mobility – a problem for some of those for whom the garden was designed; eye-sight may be poor for some garden users; and scent is particularly important for older people.

Wide paths provide access for wheel chairs and for people to walk side-by side. Gentle slopes rather than steps. There should also be lots of seating in both sun and shade.

Using strong and contrasting colors helps to overcome the problem older eyes have in adjusting to a move from an area of light to one in the shade.

When eye-sight or hearing is reduced, flowers which give off scent provide a lot of pleasure.

The paving was picked for its non slip and non-reflective properties. Changes in colour and materials arc used to herald clearly, for she less

well-sighted, that they are entering a new area. Seating surfaces in dark green are made from a recycled polystyrene waste material which is warm to the touch and relatively maintenance free. It does not absorb seater no can be quickly dried after rain.

The pergola provides a frame for climbers, and shade for the seating area below, from which the scent of the climbers can be enjoyed.

Raised beds and the raised pond bring the pleasures of plants and water up to a more accessible level to those walking, sitting or in wheel-chairs

Apart from providing a number of specimen plants with decorative leaf-shapes and autumn color, Barbara picked plants for their aromatic leaves or fragrant flowers. She chose bright colors that could be seen clearly by those with poorer sight. Orange and yellow have been used extensively. often side-by-side for vivid contrast

A mix of leaf and flower shapes and, colors allows each plant to be defined against the other. The silver leaves of a Eucalyptus gunnii overhang the pale yellow flowers of Achillea ‘Moonshine’.

The bright sunny colors of black-eyed Susan, Rudbeclsia fulgida, the yellow flowers of the lily ‘Connecticut King’ and bright orange marigolds also show up strongly against a green background.

Flowers in tones of a single color work well in a container. Here the small, soft pink flowers of Nemesia Carnival Series rise above the rim while the pendent deep pink flowers of the climbing Rhodochiton appear around the edges and trail clown to the ground

In these raised beds Barbara has used the two colors most easily seen by older eyes. The bright orange flowers of Rudbechia ‘Marmalade’ are elevated to eye-level creating a strong contrast against the paler yellow daisy-likeheads of the Argyranthemum ‘Jamaica Primrose’.

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Monday, October 12, 2009

Bonsai Trees – Stunning Examples

Short video showing off some great examples of Bonsai trees

Duration : 0:3:30

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How to grow a mini bonsai tree?

I recieved a mini bonsai tree kit as a gift. It came with a pot, soil, decorative gravel, and the seeds. How do i set this all up. The pot has a 1 cm whole on the bottom, so how do i put the soil in there without it falling through to the bottom? Also, after i put the seeds in the soil, do i put the decorative gravel on top right away, or do i wait until the seeds have started to sprout? Also, how many seeds should i plant in the pot? The container is only 2in x 2in so it is not very big, so i am guessing you only want to end up with one tree, but do you want to plant more seeds then that? This is my first one and i am very excited about it, but obviously could use some guidance. Thanks for your help!

Put a screen over the hole. You will want this to flow freely for watering. Plant 2 or 3 seeds and the thin them down to one when you see which looks the healthiest. Don’t put on the rocks until this is done. When you water, put the entire plant in standing water,almost to the top. Let it sit there for 20-30 minutes,then remove. Pick up a book on beginning bonsai and learn about it. It requires patience and takes many years to grow one from seed. You probably won’t want to trim the roots for at least a year or two. Be careful not to over prune when shaping your bonsai. Have fun. It is a very satisfying hobby. Please get a book on the subject though,as you will probably have many questions as your bonsai grows.

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Friday, October 9, 2009

can a bonsai tree be started with just a branch?

I hope that someone can help me. i want to start a bonsai tree and i’ve been told that i can do this by cutting off a small branch from a bush or a very young tree. is this true? please respond. thanks.

i understand that you can use rooting powder to encourage the growth of roots on cuttings. the important thing though is that you have to have a smooth cut to work with. a jagged cut will just rot in water and also harms the tree you take it from.

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Choosing what roses to buy

Let't talk a little about roses on Bonsai Life blogspot.

Before you pay out good money for a rose, make sure you’re getting a premium-quality plant. It should have green shoots and smooth, well-ripened wood that doesn’t yield to the touch when pressed. Roses sold in plastic bags should have a fresh, green look to them: if they’ve been stored too long, or in excessively dry conditions, they’ll have a shriveled look and may produce shoots prematurely. If you buy roses by mail order, you obviously can’t check them before you buy, so use a reputable supplier.

roses to buy

A grade-one bare-root bush rose tree must have a minimum of two good shoots, each with the diameter of a thick pencil. The stems must look fresh, not shriveled. The roots must be fibrous and in a moist condition, with a minimum length of 10 in (25 cm). Container-grown, containerized and prepack roses must meet the same standards as hare-root plants.

Roses are sold in a number of different ways. Traditionally, growers lift them in autumn and sell them bare-rooted, either individually or in quantity (which makes them cheaper). Bare-rooted roses are often excellent value for money.

Plastic bags or boxes Sometimes roses are sold bare- rooted in plastic bags or boxes. These are packed in moss or other organic materials, and are often sprayed with a harmless wax to prevent evaporation. The roots and shoots are trimmed to fit the bag or box, but still need pruning in the spring.

A more reliable way of growing roses is to buy them containerized with their own root ball, ready for planting. These, too, are pruned ready for planting and are often covered with a thin layer of wax. Because the roots have their own root ball, they are likely to get off to a better start after planting.

Container-grown plants are even more likely to transplant well, as their roots will not be disturbed whets they are moved. Before you buy a container- grown rose, check that it has actually been grown in the pot rather than containerized, and make sure it has a well- developed root system. If it doesn’t have its own solid root ball, leave it in the pot when you plant it, and don’t remove it from the pot until the autumn.

There are obvious advantages its buying your roses from a local nursery or garden centre, especially one that you know has a good reputation. Apart from the convenience, you can easily check the quality and condition of the plants. Mail order is riskier, although you may have little choice if you want an unusual variety.

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Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Bonsai Tree, Any one here loves to grow one in the house?

I’m thinking of getting a bonsai tree…

Any tip? Best price? Advice?

The hardest part to give advice on is choosing a Bonsai. This is because I guess it is a very personal thing. The best advice I can give is get a bonsai that somehow "moves you" – one that shouts out at you "Take me home with you"

On the Practical Side of things:

a) Get a Bonsai that will grow in your environment, i.e., do you live in a flat, do you have a garden, do you live in a COLD or Warm part of the world.

b) If you keep house plants, get a Bonsai that similar to a house plants, Ficus, Chinese Elm, Jade Trees and the like..

c) Do a little bit of research – find out about trees in your garden or neighborhood – these are more likely to survive with you…

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