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.

zaterdag 2 september 2017

Bonsai turntable for 6 euro

An old office chair, a plexi board, an angle grinder, a glue/silicone pistol, 6 euro, and half an hour of time. Result: a perfect bonsai turntable.

donderdag 31 augustus 2017

Alders cleanup

A bit of 'cleanup' for 2 common Alders (Alnus Glutinosa).
First one was 'cleaned' 2 weeks ago. Second one, on 27 august during bonsai-tour demo in Deinze, Belgium, organisde by the Flemish Bonsai Association for the 40th anniversary.

Still prebonsai, don't mind leaf size etc..

front of first tree

back of first tree

European Hornbeam - update and virtual

This is my prebonsai European Hornbeam (carpinus betulus) that I cleaned up a bit during the bonsai-tour of the Flemish Bonsai Assocation (VBV) in Deinze on the very sunny sunday of 27 August.

Yesterday I took 5 minutes to create very basic virtual in windows Paint. This is approx the overall image I want this tree to have. Hopefully in 5 years it will get close to this, and by then branches will also have thickened a bit.

woensdag 16 augustus 2017

40 years Flemish Bonsai Association (VBV) - local happening

Local happening of the club 'De Leie', part of the Flemish Bonsai Association, because of the 40th anniversary this year. Focus is on introducing the visitors in the hobby and also showing the several stages of bonsai, the work behind the bonsai, the road behind the 'finished bonsai'. With small demo's (maintenance, wiring, perhaps some carving, etc..)

I'll be there too, with several prebonsai, raw material, almost-bonsai, at one of the tents alongside the bonsai-tour (approx 2km in total).

Where? => city of Deinze, in the province of East-Flanders (Oost-Vlaanderen), Belgium
When? => 27th August 2017. From 10hr am to 17hr pm

maandag 17 juli 2017

Fluttering Elm or European White Elm seedlings

Yes, I also start trees up from seedlings...
This species, ulmus laevis, has become (very) rare in Flanders, and many parts of Europe because they depend on 'dynamic' river systems, where they grow in hardwood-riverwoods. The 'dynamics' of most of our rivers have been altered.
Real, genetically-endemic, trees are rare to find, in Flanders maybe 10 'hotspots' acknowledged.

So, these seedlings were harvested as seed from the trees, in the Walloon-part of Belgium.
I got 12 of them from a friend/collegue and just put them gently in a separte little pot.
I'll probably use one or several for a future root-over-rock project (another one..), the rest I'll see.

Hawthorn (crataegus monogyna) update july 2017

First picture I share since it was repotted and airlayered in early spring this year.
Airlayer has not yet produced sufficient roots. We'll check in late autumn or early spring next year.
Has had its first pruning this year, a week ago, still ok.

dinsdag 4 juli 2017

Two 'natural' stones

Stones, I like it simple and natural. No itoigawa here...I hate them actually.

These two smaller ones are the typical rocks you would find in parts of Belgium. Natural, and that does it for me. I'm happy if I can just find a workable combination for a future bonsai root-over-rock purpose. Perhaps a native Elm species (Ulmus Laevis or U.Glabra), or a Field Maple (acer Campestre). These species produce many and strong roots, and certainly the acer roots would fuse too. The only sure thing about such a project is that it would be another long-term project. Nice.

In the last picture you get an idea of size.

maandag 3 juli 2017

pinus mugo

Very small size.
Pinus Mugo, start way back in 1997 from a very small nursery plant. It has always been kept in pot, hence the thin trunk. I just honour one of my first bonsai attempts, no big plans.

vrijdag 30 juni 2017

Two little Rowan trees

First two pictures are from mid May 2017. Third one from today

Both developing, the one with the thinner trunk is the 'oldest' (from seedling 1997, always in pot)

pruned 1 1/2 weeks ago, many new shoots popping up from the sleeping buds

Ligustrum Ovalifolium

Privet, ligustrum ovalifolium.
Has been pruned by now (no picture) to get a good start for the summer.

Second year in pot, but first year I put two separate little groups together. From recuperated hedge plant in my own garden.

Smaller sized group, but will still be nice in the long run.

Silverbirch's first bonsai exam

A 4inch seedling in 2008, harvested from between the pavement tiles at our front door, to the bonsai it almost is, in June 2017. It had its first ever bonsai 'exam' at the club meeting on 17 June 2017.
It got a lot of + and ++. Some things need proper attention (inclination, further maturing the top, and offcourse a proper pot...which is in the making, by my previous teacher ceramics).

Unfortunately I do not have a good picture from the club meeting of 17 june, so this is a picture of the tree in early april.

Malus in flower

This was a picture from april this year I did not post earlier.
After bloom, the flowers were removerd. The tree is still prebonsai, with years of building up and thickening branches ahead

donderdag 29 juni 2017

Alder updates june 2017

In the common Alder series... a few pictures from May and June. Most have been pruned by now.
Don't mind leaf size, the trees are obviously all prebonsai, still several years work ahead in building them up. All Alnus Glutinosa.

Common Hazel - update June 29, 2017

Freshly cut, ready for summer.
Still many years of building up ahead.