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Thread: Portulacaria progression

  1. #1
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    Portulacaria progression

    Very slow to develop, but finally getting there. It spends nov-june half dead in a windowsill, and grows from July-Sept. I don't think a light setup is worth the effort for the two tropicals I have.

    August 2007 after first pruning (nursery stock)



    Later in 2007 - first plant I ever put in a bonsai pot! Ugh... what was I thinking! One of the main challenges with this tree was bringing the secondary trunk in closer.



    Early summer 2010. You can see how scraggly it looks coming out of its winter window. It took almost 3 years to get this crappy growth! Hardly any pruning during that time, except for a bit of end cutting to push back the strength... these trees really need to dry out between waterings.



    Summer 2011. Finally has enough growth for some real cutting and wiring. Around this time I said "screw it" and sent a stainless screw through the secondary trunk, bringing it permanently closer to the main trunk, after years of trying to fix its position with wedge grafts and guy wires.



    Late summer 2011. The pot is by Chuck Iker. Its gorgeous, but is way too small.



    Goal for 2012. The pot is a pretty old Sangyou. Its a poured pot, but good for the tree, I think.



    Comments/suggestions would be great. Thanks for looking!
    Last edited by amkhalid; February 8th, 2012 at 02:49 PM.

  2. The following 2 users say thank you to amkhalid for this post:

    Good_Ol_JR (February 8th, 2012),mat (February 8th, 2012)

  3. #2
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    Someone else had one of these portulacarias shown here, I had to look it up to realize its the baby jade or elephant bush that I have seen in so many stores. The ones I see are small and fragile and I would have never thought they could ever make such a convincing tree. It looks great and seems to be coming along nice, the pot looks great too. Nice job. One question, I was always under the impression that only a brass or copper screw would not hurt a tree, did the stainless steel screw affect it any? It looks healthy any way.

    ed
    Practising Bonsai allows me to design nature in a small yet pleasing way.

  4. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by edprocoat View Post
    I was always under the impression that only a brass or copper screw would not hurt a tree, did the stainless steel screw affect it any?
    I have no idea if stainless is bad. I know most people use brass, but I had no brass screws so I used a stainless wood screw. Its been about 6 months since I did it, and the tree seems fine. After it was drilled in, I cut off the head of the screw and its already healed over, so I can't get it out anyway

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    jim smith.jpg

    Ed, here's Jim Smith trimming one that's pretty convincing.

  6. #5
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    Have you considered layering the tree for a better base ? These root so easily that I think you would have no problem. I cut one completely in half and it rooted quite quickly.

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    Improving the base is definitely in the plan. I've actually considered just sawing off the base and making a cutting as you mentioned. Still, not a guarantee that I will get a good nebari. I've made some wounds in a lame attempt to ground layer, but I think I keep the soil too dry perhaps? Any tips? Do you live in a tropical or temperate climate?

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    Quote Originally Posted by mat View Post
    jim smith.jpg

    Ed, here's Jim Smith trimming one that's pretty convincing.
    You think?

    Damn, thats a fine looking tree!

    ed
    Practising Bonsai allows me to design nature in a small yet pleasing way.

  9. #8
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    It's one that he donated to Heathcote, in Ft Pierce. I'm not sure where you stay when you make it to Florida, but it may be worth a trip.

    http://www.heathcotebotanicalgardens.org/home1

  10. #9
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    I cut the top half off mine, waited for the stub to dry out (important or you will get rot), then stuck it into sand. It rooted in about three weeks in the summer in Minnesota.

  11. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by davetree View Post
    I cut the top half off mine, waited for the stub to dry out (important or you will get rot), then stuck it into sand. It rooted in about three weeks in the summer in Minnesota.
    Thanks... I might actually try that this year. Its a bold move, but would be worth the payoff.

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