2019-season BC-yamadori mega-thread :D

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#1
I've got some Q's on BC's as time-to-collect approaches and seeing several other BC-threads near the top of this sub-forum, I figured a merged/mega would be practical! (if a mod feels like changing this to "Some specific Q's on collecting BC's and after-care" instead please don't hesitate, I thought this would just work better!)


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First-and-Foremost: What are your thoughts on "the ideal/optimal time to collect a BC?" In anticipation of this year's season, I've begun thinking how I *could* be collecting right now, that it'd just be dumb as the supple back-budded growth would have to face most of winter still, however in thinking about this topic I've concluded that the time for this, heck the time for most-every bonsai-procedure, isn't best thought of as a date on the calendar but specifically *and only* based upon the plant, IE it's fair to say that "Late Feb will tend to be / likely be a great time to collect BC's", but far more accurate to say "it's optimal to collect BC's right-before bud-break", if that makes sense! I know that last year I had a sub-50% success rate, but of the two that survived, one was the first one I'd collected last season and that was on Feb 2nd., am actively trying to find a way to see historic weather-data so I can see when the frost-nights were last year - if any floridians keep a more detailed journal than me I'd be forever grateful to know the dates of last year's coldest eves!- but I think the smartest approach is to ignore the calendar & focus on the weather and the trees to discern your best collection-date! I plan to do this under the assumption that right-before bud-break is optimal, IE that doing it when buds are already breaking-open adn growing, you're going to weaken it / it's later than optimal, and that if you do it too soon you'll have supple juvenile back-budding that may not make it - I'm unsure which way is better/safer to err towards!
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So I'm like a kid-near-christmas right now, with BC collection season so close, but wanted to ask you guys some things that I can't quite figure-out fully myself, think it's best to just bullet-point it for brevity, any & all answers/thoughts/suggestions/additions are appreciated very much!!

  1. - If doing periodic-submersions, are there any "best-guesses" as to when to do them? My only intuition here is to simply do the submersion - unsure for how long - during the month(s) that are the wettest here, the months when it'd normally have gotten submerged in nature (though to be fair my two BC's are from ponds that don't dry-out, that are still under-water right now and it's one of our driest months; May is the driest month, with July being the wettest, I think that for my established BC's that, this year, I'll almost let them get (not dry, but not as well-watered as usual I guess) in the last weeks of May and then, when rain starts in June, begin floodings and then do a submersion on July 1st and keep it submerged for our wettest couple months!
  2. Is it appropriate to just not-prune my established BC's this spring? It seems that pruning in spring (well, before / at bud-break) in year 2 is "the norm", however while I've got two fatty leaders on my BC's I know they're not nearly as thick as I need just yet, so the idea of cutting them and slowing them seems pretty silly to me, my 'mental game-plan' for approaching their spring-pruning, if any, is to leave their primaries
  3. It's my 2nd-season of collecting BC's, last year I was walking my swamp in tennis shoes, squatting-over with a bread-knife & 2' garden-loppers to collect my trees (and bike them home rofl!), this year I want to approach this better so (not just for this) I've gotten an 18V sawzall I plan to use for the trunk-choppings on-site when collecting (have never found anything worth getting that wasn't in at least 6-10" of water), and have a Stihl scythe (thing is amazing!!) and an off-brand one, and the loppers (and a truck!!) So my my 'Optimal Scouting/Collecting Plan' right now is to have my belt with scythes & lopper on one side, sawzall on the other, and plastic-bags over my shoes as I walk the area, then I'll get out, change shoes and start removing whatever muck I think is worth removing on-site (friend whose property this is has lights and everything so, on the likely chance I end up collecting in the eve at least once, I'll be able to get full light :D ) Then home and essentially carve it down (but not bare-root!) harder like Bill or Schley would (maybe even as aggressive as @Zach Smith goes!) and set them up!
I'm also hoping for thoughts on substrates, I used peat&DE heavy mixes for the BC's I got last year, they did very well this year I think (will put a pic of first-year's trunk-chop roll-over below this line, been wanting to share this pic ;D )
20190108_195957.jpg
, anyways for this season I want to get several new BC's and am planning on making a raised-bed for them & some other specimen I have of different species, anyways I'll be making a 'bulk substrate' and am thinking of just using a very heavy pine-bark mixture, however I've yet to find legitimate, *composted* pine-bark so that's a problem....**What of Solarizing stuff?** I've had the thought over&over for weeks now that I should be taking my substrate-screens and collecting the HUMUS from around my woods, so that I can begin solarizing it for bugs/pests and have it ready for (2-4wks?) collection time, seems an easy/cheap/practical way of getting a lot of good, organic matter w/o worries of problematic nematodes/etc!
[I should note, ^that is the tree that has me most thinking "when spring comes, that is **not** ready to have the primary-leader hard-pruned yet, in fact I'm hoping for thoughts/confirmation on the idea that you shouldn't cut-back your new leader until it's at least 80% of the final-girth you'd have wanted, much like you wouldn't stop the growth of an in-ground specimen by collecting it before its trunk was proper!


Thanks a ton for any & all contributions to this thread, and to anyone unfamiliar-with / new-to BC's, please don't hesitate to post Q's, others & myself are happy to answer all the basics :) Happy New-Year BC, and happy gardening!!! :D


____________________
PS- In preparation of the collection-season (and the next growing-season for my established ones), I've been re-watching every BC video I can find and in watching @BillsBayou 's most-recent most-recent-video there was something I was curious about- Bill is going to do a submersion on a long-time-in-training specimen (2 decades IIRC!!) that hasn't been submerged in a while.....my curiosity is because of the fact that it seemed like he was going to go ahead and do it *then*, in Feb when the tree was dormant. That, and the fact he was doing heavy wiring, had me thinking that my timings may be off....I'm not as well-read on the submersion stuff, I know it does give bigger trunks & knee-possibility and that back&forth flooding / tidal flooding is better than always-submerged, however submersion aside- wouldn't you avoid doing styling in winter? He was bringing it to a club so it makes all the sense in the world in that context IE it's not bad/worrisome/hurting it, am just curious if it's optimal (IE to discern if he was doing it then because it was a good time in his eyes, or if it was a bit sooner to make it for the club), my understanding & intuition would be that the styling should be done right around / right before bud-break, would love to hear Bill's or anyone's thoughts on these curiosities!
 
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#2
[meant to include this in my OP but Edits have a time-window.... @BillsBayou, in your vid from feb '18 where you carved that narrow channel in your bc's leader w/ a carbide bit- how did that end up? Very curious for updates on it!! :) ]
 
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#3
First things first, I cut that branch too deep and it died. Good news for that top is that more branches have sprouted in that location and I'll be able to train them just fine. My thread-graft also died. As in "HOW THE HELL COULD I SCREW THAT UP?" But I did. The entire tree leafed out YELLOW. Plenty of vigorous growth, but it was all yellow with only a little line of green along the spine of each leaf. I had to do some serious rescue work to save the tree. It ended the summer very green, but I lost a back branch. In the midst of saving the tree, I lost my daughter. Then, for the rest of the year, I only paid cursory attention to my trees. I only watered them and barely fed them.

I'm getting my head back together and I'm trying to get back into bonsai before I lose the opportunity to get this year off on the right foot.

Your opening paragraph on when to collect is spot-on. I would add a few things that have improved my collection success.
1) Collect early in the day on a cool cloudy day. The sun comes up at 7am in late January/early February. I'm at the swamp's edge just before sun-up and proceed when I can see.
2) Don't leave your collected trees in the sun. My worst collecting year was when I lost half of the 17 trees I collected. I was greedy and I was out there from before sunrise to well after sunset.
3) Remove all branches from heavy trees. If the tree is more than 5-inches at the soil line, that's a heavy tree. I've had trees with perfect first, second branches and a perfect leader for when I do the trunk chop. So I left those branches on and cut off the top of the tree. As the tree developed in that first year, it concentrated on developing only those branches. That created little in the way of energy-producing growth. Those trees died. What I recommend is cutting off everything and the tree will respond by popping out growth everywhere it can.
4) Clean off all the original soil and pot the tree in a high-organic mix. Then drown the tree for the first year.

That 20-year-old tree that I said I was going to flood? While I was trying to save it, I had it flooded for about 2 months in a solution of fish emulsion (2tbsp/gal). If you think fish emulsion smells bad when you're fertilizing trees in pots that drain well, you don't know stink. After a week, fish-emulsion starts to rot. Lucky for my marriage, the tree was in a far corner of my property. It smelled like a dumpster at the wharf.

Smaller trees can be collected and jammed into whatever you have on hand. If I get a good pull on a tree and the taproot comes out, I like to cut the end of it off. It encourages lateral root growth.

My personal submersion schedule: March-October. By March, the leaves have come out and are set. Now the leaves are pumping energy back into the vascular system. The roots will suffer hypoxia from the flood and begin to change their structure. In October, there is still some green on the tree, but the season is winding down. Time to give the roots a break and let them drain once again.

NOTE: I'M A NUTJOB. I'M TORTURING MY TREES.

Other's recommend constant submersion, but only up to an inch below the soil line. Most don't recommend any submersion at all.

As to your second note about pruning. Then don't! If you want to develop thickness on anything, don't prune it. Work on girth first, then worry about branch placement and twigging.

Point 3: Get yourself some damned boots. Plastic bags? sheesh.... On the topic of carrying gear, I found a backpack at a thrift store for $3. It's meant to carry a tennis racket. This means there is a big open top pocket where I can put my saw! The downside is that it is covered in flowers and I'm not a covered-in-flowers kind of guy. But practicality wins out.

"We found a body in the swamp. No idea what he was doing out there, but his backpack is covered in flowers. I'm thinking he was a nice person."
 
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#4
Bill I am so sorry that is just terrible, I wish there was something I could say/do to ease things in any way whatsoever....fuck that is just terrible I am so sorry :( Forget the whole "new year thing", you'll hit your stride when the time is right, of anyone in this art you're not someone I'd worry couldn't just hop right back in whenever they chose and have it as-if they'd never stopped!

Thanks a ton for all the answers here, it's still surreal to get replies from you when the context is me watching your vids over & over (bonsai or car-repair vids are my coffee-routine lol), am curious just how you saved the tree? Yellow makes me think "chlorosis", though this seems to be resultant from physical insults (the carve), so confused a bit on that - BC's are weird though..

I think all BC's I've ever had access to were 'heavy', in fact I often marvel at where they even come from (obviously I'm half joking here!) because, if I go to a massive swamp right now, I can't find "first year" BC's, just large stuff, searching for me is literally an activity of "where are the smallest ones?"!!!! And thanks re removing any branches, even if they seem good- I followed that last year despite others advising against it and am glad I did!!

NOTE: I'M A NUTJOB. I'M TORTURING MY TREES.
Heh, in a way I guess, but in the best way :) When people think "BC bonsai", *globally*, you are at the top- you're not just a BC-sadist ;D

As to your second note about pruning. Then don't! If you want to develop thickness on anything, don't prune it. Work on girth first, then worry about branch placement and twigging.
Thanks! I've gotta say though, while I'm glad that this meshes with my intuition (IE, don't touch those top leaders until they're ~80%+ as thick as 'final-composition' thickness), I'm still confused.as.hell about why year-2 pruning of yamadori BC's is seemingly so common? I mean, anyone with a 1yr BC should be leaving that leader I'd imagine, yet most seem to chop it in early year2....my plan is to simply leave the top leader and prune the sides, that'll let me start a round of ramification on the lower branches while also signalling the tree to pump that top-leader even more than it would've!

Point 3: Get yourself some damned boots. Plastic bags? sheesh.... On the topic of carrying gear, I found a backpack at a thrift store for $3. It's meant to carry a tennis racket. This means there is a big open top pocket where I can put my saw! The downside is that it is covered in flowers and I'm not a covered-in-flowers kind of guy. But practicality wins out.
ROFL! I had to basically rebuild my life and bonsai came into it during that time, so last year I was collecting in my shoes, using a knife from my kitchen, and carrying the stump home over my shoulder on my bike - can't believe I had a 1/3 success rate (better than that, but under 50%, didn't know then how bad plastic bags are as 'insulators') Anyways, this year I have a pickup truck, sawzall w/ plenty of batteries, a nice Stihl hand scythe, and am in the process of custom-building a "large scythe" out of a pole-saw blade and a 2x4 (will be carving the 2x4 adn putting a grip on it, thing will be a beast!), I've got a plethora of throwaway blankets to essentially 'insulate' my truck's bed, am expecting a very high success% this year! And I've got a backpack, will be wearing my tool-belt, etc - the boots thing is somethign I'm still dragging my feet on, as last year I just walked (in tennis shoes lol) in the swamp, this year I'm planning to just bring 2 pairs of shoes so I can walk in the swamp in 1, and swap when done - while I like the idea of dedicated boots, the reality is I suck in boots and expect I'd fall-over lol, my 'career' is various forms of handyman/physical-labor stuff and wearing work-boots throws me off, I like proper-fitting shoes and can walk 'lightly' through a swamp so the idea of bags was just for comfort, I'd take a pair of old tennis shoes w/o bags over a pair of the boots I think, maybe someday when $ is better I can buy some nice swamp-boots to try!
"We found a body in the swamp. No idea what he was doing out there, but his backpack is covered in flowers. I'm thinking he was a nice person."
ROFL!!! BC collection certainly is the riskiest bonsai-hunting I've done lol!!

Thanks again for all the tips here, I mean just having the truck had me thinking "instead of multiple trips I can just spend a whole day and do it in 1 shot", now I'm not planning on doing that (risking killing an old BC bothers me, I re-purposed a dead one from last year into a monkey-pole stand lol), the truck-bed will be lined very well with proper insulators, I've got a cache of insulated bags and linens so root-balls will be wrapped & insulated, will certainly be wary of midday sun if/when I'm able to do earlier collections (last year I probably had a 40% success rate, though it's hard for me to discern what my biggest cause of loss was, I'd just assumed it had to be biking for 5-20min, depending on location, with a BC over my shoulder whose roots were haphazardly wrapped with a plastic bag (hey, they're going to get root-pruned / bare-rooted when home anyways, so figured outer roots weren't a big issue), this year should be a whole other game though given I have real tools & real transport :D

Again man thanks for taking the time to reply and, more importantly, for taking the time to spread/share what you know online, your videos are invaluable and your help here is too, can't tell you how appreciated it is! And again man I am so sorry to hear that news, my thoughts will be with you I hope....hope everyone's coping as well as can be expected, if that's even an appropriate way to look at it....don't even know what to say except I'm as sorry as I can be and wish I could say/offer/do anything to help ameliorate any tiny fraction of the pain....life can be so fucking unfair.
 
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#5
Other's recommend constant submersion, but only up to an inch below the soil line. Most don't recommend any submersion at all.
I've never gotten the "none at all" thing, unless you're doing it because you're a commercial wholesaler like zach and it's just impractical in that context, but otherwise I was under the impression that this isn't even a matter of debate, that submersion > non-submerged, and that tidal/periodic submersion > always-submerged....pretty sure there's formal papers on this although I'm guessing you already know precisely what papers I mean!

Out of curiosity, do you collect annually? Some inquisitive part of me always wonders these things, like "how many trees does someone like him have?"....do you happen to have any all-in-1-spot photo albums or anything by chance?

Again thanks for everything man, you're such an asset to this art/hobby!!!!
 
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I've never gotten the "none at all" thing, unless you're doing it because you're a commercial wholesaler like zach and it's just impractical in that context, but otherwise I was under the impression that this isn't even a matter of debate, that submersion > non-submerged, and that tidal/periodic submersion > always-submerged....pretty sure there's formal papers on this although I'm guessing you already know precisely what papers I mean!

Out of curiosity, do you collect annually? Some inquisitive part of me always wonders these things, like "how many trees does someone like him have?"....do you happen to have any all-in-1-spot photo albums or anything by chance?

Again thanks for everything man, you're such an asset to this art/hobby!!!!

I have dozens of BC and me and my club together prob have over a hundred and I have never seen any difference in any growth at all between submerged and non submerged. Especially in this climate. Keeping a tree submerged in a tub of water in Florida will create so many more problems than any benefits you MIGHT think you're getting.
 
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I've had just about 100% success collecting BC around the first of Feb. for these last few years. Last year, I collected one in May......just to see if it could be done. It made it very well, but it looks like it got borers this year and I'm not sure if it will come back this spring.

My best luck with BC is without submersion. Used about 50-50 reused bonsai soil and good quality potting soil. It hurt, but I promised myself I wouldn't prune it AT ALL this summer and it paid off. This
is the tree at about 8 months from collection. Didn't submerge it but flooded the pot every day during the growing season ( it does have drain holes). I cheated a little. Cut back a couple of branches that were getting in the way.
The longest two branches were 45" long.
100_2128.JPG
 

rockm

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#8
I've never gotten the "none at all" thing, unless you're doing it because you're a commercial wholesaler like zach and it's just impractical in that context, but otherwise I was under the impression that this isn't even a matter of debate, that submersion > non-submerged, and that tidal/periodic submersion > always-submerged....pretty sure there's formal papers on this although I'm guessing you already know precisely what papers I mean!

Out of curiosity, do you collect annually? Some inquisitive part of me always wonders these things, like "how many trees does someone like him have?"....do you happen to have any all-in-1-spot photo albums or anything by chance?

Again thanks for everything man, you're such an asset to this art/hobby!!!!
Oh Jesus, no submersion is not a "given."

This is a kind of contentious point and will remain so. Do what works for you.

The flip side of submersion--- I have come to the conclusion over the years, that you really DON'T have to submerge BC to get great results. I've found that submersion can also INHIBIT growth.

There are studies done by LSU and the University of Florida that show BC grow best when SEASONALLY flooded in the fall and only for a month or less. If you can find a copy of this book (Bald Cypress: The Tree Unique, The Wood Eternal) that has a reasonable price tag, it is one of the definitive publications on Bald Cypress. ALOT of great info in it backed by studies. Will change how you see BC.

I stopped submerging my BC after Gary Marchal (do some research --he was an excellent BC guy. Sadly, he passed away in 2017 I think) advised me that submersion really wasn't all that necessary. I had trees that kept yellowing prematurely--as in June-- and new growth slowed considerably--when kept submerged. I stopped submersion, the early yellowing did too...and more vigorous growth returned too.

I have used a bonsai soil mix heavy on plain old potting soil--as in 70 percent potting soil, regular bonsai mix and sharp sand--for a couple of decades now. The potting soil retains a lot of water, the other ingredients allow some drainage. And yeah, I have root tissues that look to be developing knees (I have a feeling that this is because of "tight roots" in the pot and not all due to wet soil--but that's another fight).

Look, BC LIKE water. They don't need to be standing in it though. They grow with their roots underwater mostly because they evolved that capability to outcompete other plants. It does NOT mean underwater is an optimal condition for them. Mature BC can drown in deep water above 15 feet. BC seed don't germinate underwater and seedlings can die if they're underwater for more than a month or so... That's why they stick to shorelines and shallower areas.

All below From the University of Fla.--

Trees grow at a moderately fast rate, reaching 40 to 50 feet in about 15 to 25 years. Although it is native to wetlands along running streams, growth is often faster on moist, well-drained soil...Baldcypress is ideal for wet locations, such as its native habitat of stream banks and mucky soils, but the trees will also grow remarkably well on almost any soil, including heavy, compacted, or poorly-drained muck, except alkaline soils with a pH above 7.5...

In fact, trees grow faster in a well-drained, moist soil than they do in a wet site. It appears as though in nature they simply out-compete other trees in wet soil rather than prefer wet soil.
https://hort.ifas.ufl.edu/woody/Pages/taxdis/taxdis.shtml
 
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First hand experience. I lived along Bayou Lafourche here in South La. for 25 years. I had 17 cypress trees on the property..........14 of them were in the bayou and 3 were on high ground. The 14 in the bayou were in water right at the normal soil line or a little above. They grew very slowly over the years. The 3 on high ground more than doubled in size.
 
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I submerge because it works for me with trees I collect from swamps. I also submerge to fatten up the roots. I don't submerge for growth. As was pointed out by @rockm , submerging your tree will inhibit growth. I work my trees from the soil line up. None of the trees in my videos are submerged. I'm trying to push the trees (some WAY too fast) to become bonsai.

Many people tell me that submerging does nothing. Not just here, but elsewhere on the Internet and out in the world. But when I'm watching a newly submerged tree's roots go through the changes of creating schizogenic tissues; when bright golden tissues are bursting through the cracks in the dark brown bark; when a smooth trunk with a simple root begins to look like something fat is crawling up the root into the trunk; I know what I know. Sadly, it's all anecdotal. It's just a story I tell. I need photos. I need a control group. I need "This is your roots. This is your roots in a flood."

I might FINALLY begin my multi-year project of experimenting on how to best fatten up the base of bald cypress. I have all the bus tubs I need (but will likely go get more) and I'll be modifying them with aquarium bulkheads for drainage. This is going to be the most boring bonsai video series ever. "Welcome to year 2 of the series. As you can see, the roots were X inches across last year and this year they are Y. Next year, I'll repot the trees. See you then." BORING! I'm going to need puppets.

I'm tired of doing things that work because "That's the way I do things." I'm not practicing good fact-based bonsai. I'm practicing anecdotal or myth-based bonsai. I know what works and I know what should happen when I make decisions. Now, I'm going to create experimental groups and control groups to isolate certain variables.

"For the love of God, Bill. We've been hearing this for years!" Well, you stupid voice in my head, I may finally be doing it.
 
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#11
[want to squeeze-in a new Q..]
What about showing nebari/flare- my 2 BC's from last season are dormant, when they wake they'll still be in their original containers with their flare 'hidden' by a ~1" (at least) excessively-tall substrate level, this was 'for safety' in their transition to container horticulture however at this point I'd love to expose them (well, in spring seems like it'd be smarter than now!), am guessing that beginning of year 2 is fine but wanted to ask (the other day I was poking-around their bases to expose the nebari for some pics - now I gotta find where that "winter neolanders" thread is with the bald trees, whole reason I took the shots but Google isn't cooperating with me!), having found that where their trunks meet the surface being far more beautiful than I'd remembered!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

I have dozens of BC and me and my club together prob have over a hundred and I have never seen any difference in any growth at all between submerged and non submerged. Especially in this climate. Keeping a tree submerged in a tub of water in Florida will create so many more problems than any benefits you MIGHT think you're getting.
Interesting thank you!! That was my concern, FWIW I was "speaking theoretically", I've never had a submerged BC and don't intend to (well, maybe 5% of me likes the idea of doing a growing season where I do have one container sitting in a pot of water, just to see with my own eyes), I just see what @Mellow Mullet does w/ submersion, I think of that study that measures knees & trunk-girth, and conclude that it's "settled" that there is "an edge" (however minimal) to intermittent submersion (this 'edge' doesn't seem remotely as significant as, say, simply upping container-volume by 10%)

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

I've had just about 100% success collecting BC around the first of Feb. for these last few years. Last year, I collected one in May......just to see if it could be done. It made it very well, but it looks like it got borers this year and I'm not sure if it will come back this spring.
Awesome re the success-rate!! Really hoping for a 100.0% this year myself, have rectified - I think!- all the issues w/ my tech from last year so I've got high-hopes!

Are leaf-boring bugs easy to spot on a BC? I'm picturing the trails they leave on my bougies (and sometimes otehr species), and their tunnels in the leaf seem to be as-wide as a blade of foliage on a BC, interested in this as I wouldn't have thought they could practically fit!

Re collecting in May, I suspect it could be done so long as the climate is welcoming to rapid growth (ie they have time to properly recover & establish before winter), definitely wouldn't be as ideal as pulling it before the growth obviously but neat to hear an anecdote on this as I actually do have every intention of doing a mid-summer collection of a single one just to satisfy my curiosity on how it'd go for me in my area/garden/etc! Good luck w/ yours, hope it comes back in spring!!!!!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Oh Jesus, no submersion is not a "given."

This is a kind of contentious point and will remain so. Do what works for you.

The flip side of submersion--- I have come to the conclusion over the years, that you really DON'T have to submerge BC to get great results. I've found that submersion can also INHIBIT growth.

There are studies done by LSU and the University of Florida that show BC grow best when SEASONALLY flooded in the fall and only for a month or less. If you can find a copy of this book (Bald Cypress: The Tree Unique, The Wood Eternal) that has a reasonable price tag, it is one of the definitive publications on Bald Cypress. ALOT of great info in it backed by studies. Will change how you see BC.

I stopped submerging my BC after Gary Marchal (do some research --he was an excellent BC guy. Sadly, he passed away in 2017 I think) advised me that submersion really wasn't all that necessary. I had trees that kept yellowing prematurely--as in June-- and new growth slowed considerably--when kept submerged. I stopped submersion, the early yellowing did too...and more vigorous growth returned too.

I have used a bonsai soil mix heavy on plain old potting soil--as in 70 percent potting soil, regular bonsai mix and sharp sand--for a couple of decades now. The potting soil retains a lot of water, the other ingredients allow some drainage. And yeah, I have root tissues that look to be developing knees (I have a feeling that this is because of "tight roots" in the pot and not all due to wet soil--but that's another fight).

Look, BC LIKE water. They don't need to be standing in it though. They grow with their roots underwater mostly because they evolved that capability to outcompete other plants. It does NOT mean underwater is an optimal condition for them. Mature BC can drown in deep water above 15 feet. BC seed don't germinate underwater and seedlings can die if they're underwater for more than a month or so... That's why they stick to shorelines and shallower areas.

All below From the University of Fla.--

Trees grow at a moderately fast rate, reaching 40 to 50 feet in about 15 to 25 years. Although it is native to wetlands along running streams, growth is often faster on moist, well-drained soil...Baldcypress is ideal for wet locations, such as its native habitat of stream banks and mucky soils, but the trees will also grow remarkably well on almost any soil, including heavy, compacted, or poorly-drained muck, except alkaline soils with a pH above 7.5...

In fact, trees grow faster in a well-drained, moist soil than they do in a wet site. It appears as though in nature they simply out-compete other trees in wet soil rather than prefer wet soil.
https://hort.ifas.ufl.edu/woody/Pages/taxdis/taxdis.shtml
"Oh jesus, no submersion is not a given!" lol sorry RockM! That's my bad I had remembered it as being "a given" but honestly I wish I didn't mention it because I've no dog in that fight, it's hardly even a curiosity to me because A I don't plan to do any submersions (excepting, perhaps, a single tester!) and B it's such a contentious point that derails so many of these, if it wasn't disingenuous I'd probably just say you were right and I had no disagreement but I'd sworn there was another study that focused on girth and knees not absolute height - if they're faster in well-drained then that's better for me as that's how I keep them :D Reading your personal results with it does make me wonder whether you tried intermittent submersion but again that's truly the minutiae of minutiae to me as I don't want to deal w/ submersion it just isn't something that appeals to me (if I saw a guaranteed 25% growth-increase then sure, but I know that the debate on this doesn't center on 25% it's centering on, what, <5% at most?)

Never heard of that book or of Gary Marchal, bill (and zach!) are the only 'public' authorities I knew of, thanks **a ton** for those, especially the book, just ideal/perfect for me right now man thanks!!!! [crosses fingers re finding a reasonable price tag!!]

RE knees, are you just observing this or are you proactively trying to get knees on your specimen? The concept of 'building/growing' knees has fascinated me although I fear it's another minutiae in that it'd take ages to get a proper knee to grow and match the trunking, but learning about them fascinates me (isn't it true that these taxodium distichum are the ONLY species on the planet that does this?)

Re your soil mixture, I've got a similar-enough mindset in my approach with 1 pretty major divergence I hope to clear-up my thoughts on- why would you go and include sand/potting-soil? Don't get me wrong, I use the stuff in some mixes and, on my current/established (2) BC's, I did go against my initial preference and did use un-screened peat to help with my water-retention in my non-submerged containers, however in my mind - and my intent for the coming BC's - if you're not submerging (or perhaps even if you are), you should have a porous substrate to help encourage more root-mass // container-volume, right? For instance, my 'ideal' substrate for the ones I'm planning to get - and this is still in-progress, mind you!- is something wherein I'm getting my high WHC(water.hold.capacity) via mixture and not via particle-size, for instance obviously we could plug-up a box with sand and make it slow-draining but that wouldn't be ideal, I picture the high WHC being achieved by means of aggregate choice, IE I'm thinking my "ideal" mixture to be something like the following (note: I may not be able to afford enough of this so may not use it, this is just 'ideal')

- 60% pine-bark-mulch (composted of course, @BillsBayou mentions in a vid that some places call this 'soil conditioner', hopefully that lets me find some as I've searched for almost a year now and nowhere has composted bark-mulch!)

- 25% diatomite/DE

- 10% sphagnum/peat mixture (maybe 75/25%)

- 5% ultra-coarse perlite

These ^ would be screened, the idea/hypothesis for this being that it's got the WHC & CEC desired, as well as pH, yet still has porosity for there to be more root-surface-area in any given volume of container space!

Thanks a ton for the long reply and again I'm sorry for speaking in such 'final' terms about something I wasn't positive on or even that interested in (submersion) those talks just go awry and IMO it's basically for nothing as any differences seem minimal/insignificant regardless so I hope this doesn't turn into one of those and fear it could (and would have nobody to blame but myself as I said the word first, wasn't thinking-through the implications of bringing that up!)

[Out of curiosity do you actually develop BC's to refinement yourself? This is something I almost made a thread about recently: Why the heck do 10yr+ BC's seem so-poorly developed in-general? Just disregard if you disagree with the premise I guess, but I'll watch youtubes / look at online albums and see 10yr+ in-training BC's and the lack of ramification just blows my mind! They seem to be pretty eager back-budders which just further confuses me as to how they can appear even remotely 'sparse' when they've been trained for 10yrs, it's as-if they let you develop branch-structure properly but then just don't 'fill it in' fully!]

Again thanks for the lengthy reply am always happy when you catch one of my threads (had I remembered you had BC's I'd have tagged you off the bat ;P )
 
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#12
I submerge because it works for me with trees I collect from swamps. I also submerge to fatten up the roots. I don't submerge for growth. As was pointed out by @rockm , submerging your tree will inhibit growth. I work my trees from the soil line up. None of the trees in my videos are submerged. I'm trying to push the trees (some WAY too fast) to become bonsai.

Many people tell me that submerging does nothing. Not just here, but elsewhere on the Internet and out in the world. But when I'm watching a newly submerged tree's roots go through the changes of creating schizogenic tissues; when bright golden tissues are bursting through the cracks in the dark brown bark; when a smooth trunk with a simple root begins to look like something fat is crawling up the root into the trunk; I know what I know. Sadly, it's all anecdotal. It's just a story I tell. I need photos. I need a control group. I need "This is your roots. This is your roots in a flood."

I might FINALLY begin my multi-year project of experimenting on how to best fatten up the base of bald cypress. I have all the bus tubs I need (but will likely go get more) and I'll be modifying them with aquarium bulkheads for drainage. This is going to be the most boring bonsai video series ever. "Welcome to year 2 of the series. As you can see, the roots were X inches across last year and this year they are Y. Next year, I'll repot the trees. See you then." BORING! I'm going to need puppets.

I'm tired of doing things that work because "That's the way I do things." I'm not practicing good fact-based bonsai. I'm practicing anecdotal or myth-based bonsai. I know what works and I know what should happen when I make decisions. Now, I'm going to create experimental groups and control groups to isolate certain variables.

"For the love of God, Bill. We've been hearing this for years!" Well, you stupid voice in my head, I may finally be doing it.
Yeah I should've been clearer (and more informed) when speaking about the topic and fear that having brought it up will derail things but I guess it's all BC's so whatever right? :D

What do you mean when you say you're pushing some too-fast to become bonsai? I find that so hard to acknowledge when, having just-yesterday watched (twice lol, had missed some when refilling coffee ;P ) your Feb '18 video, and seeing a 20yrs in-training BC that you're still doing major work on! Some want to try going into-refinement at 6mo, or immediately upon possession rofl, you seem the opposite / a patience-guru! I just don't see how on earth that'd apply to you - could you give an example or two of what things you meant by that, so I can understand & avoid them myself? Thanks!!


Re it being anecdotal, and re testing/photos/controls, if in *ANY* way I can help do a comparable experiment I'd be eager to get in on it, having 2 data sets to compare at end-of-season (or whenever the time-table is) would obviously be better, I'm happy to do this w/ all of my BC's (have 2 established ones, want to get at least 3 more this season, if not double that!) and I have precision calipers and take very extensive notes/dates/photos in my written & digital journals so could document any type of A/B comparison-experiment and would be happy to if you gave me the parameters you're using (or that you'd like to see me use!)

And re BORING, I dunno!! was discussing (arguing) about long-form versus sound-byte style 'discussion' / info-dissemination recently, I think that when the topic is one that's cared about then the limits for boredom are pushed wayyyy back, it may sound silly but if you'd had 10x the videos you do, and they were all an hour long, I'd still have seen them all multiple times - for those who are passionate on these things, the articles & especially "video articles"(youtubes) of pro's like you are simply indispensable, can assure you I wouldn't need puppets lol ;D

Thanks again for everything man, while I'm not sure if it's the majority of my knowledge on BC's, you surely are the person who individually has taught me the most (between your vids, posts on BN in-general and replies to my Q's!)
 
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#13
Oooh!! Got a "good" (for me!) Q:

For my 1-year-in-development BC's that are currently dormant, when they wake I'll be doing a ~50% (length-wise) pruning of all branches excepting the top-leader/primary, to push-growth on the top / close the chop-wounds. With such minimal pruning (as the overwhelming majority of my BC's growth is in the top primaries that won't be touched), I'm not worried about any real roots//foliage mis-match, *but* what I'm very very uncertain on is whether or not I should be re-potting/up-potting these guys? They're in large-ish containers already but, like with bougies, there seems a strong desire from the tree to just fill a container **AND** their canopy-growth also seems to have the same strong linear correlation to the rate/speed the roots can spread&grow...I up-potted one of my BC's twice last year (literally just putting its container inside another and letting the escaped-roots populate the new one) and each time saw a distinct new growth-flush (or, rather, an increased speed of vegetative growth, 'flush' may not be the best word), SO I'm just very unsure what my "Container & Root Strategy", if *anything*, should be!

Thanks :D

[my instinct is to do as gentle-as-possible a slip-pot into something larger, trying not to disturb roots at all - this can be done simply on my larger BC, as it spent its entire first year in an over-sized grow-box, however the smaller one was in an oil-pan, which then got put on-top of another oil-pan w/ another 3" of substrate, which then got put on-top of a 5-gal nursery container and quickly filled that up....IE, I'm not sure I can dissemble that setup w/o some massive root-damage, considering that the main roots leaving that trunk have a mere ~3-4" before they hit the bottom of the first container! Will be playing plastic-surgeon (plastic as-in plastic-containers lol) with a razor-blade trying to dissemble as well as possible, but expecting root-loss and almost wondering if, in this specific context, it's smarter to simply do a medium root-prune instead.....) Any thoughts on how to deal w/ this one would be appreciated, I mean it's got 3 containers under it and each successive container is connected by the escaped-roots of the one above it, so it's going to be a mess and even w/ precision I'm going to have large pieces of plastic in there, I feel like I'd have to accept it and leave some plastic in the root-mass if I want any semblance of a good root-ball after getting it out of its sad&sorry setup!]
 

rockm

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#14
[want to squeeze-in a new Q..]
What about showing nebari/flare- my 2 BC's from last season are dormant, when they wake they'll still be in their original containers with their flare 'hidden' by a ~1" (at least) excessively-tall substrate level, this was 'for safety' in their transition to container horticulture however at this point I'd love to expose them (well, in spring seems like it'd be smarter than now!), am guessing that beginning of year 2 is fine but wanted to ask (the other day I was poking-around their bases to expose the nebari for some pics - now I gotta find where that "winter neolanders" thread is with the bald trees, whole reason I took the shots but Google isn't cooperating with me!), having found that where their trunks meet the surface being far more beautiful than I'd remembered!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~



Interesting thank you!! That was my concern, FWIW I was "speaking theoretically", I've never had a submerged BC and don't intend to (well, maybe 5% of me likes the idea of doing a growing season where I do have one container sitting in a pot of water, just to see with my own eyes), I just see what @Mellow Mullet does w/ submersion, I think of that study that measures knees & trunk-girth, and conclude that it's "settled" that there is "an edge" (however minimal) to intermittent submersion (this 'edge' doesn't seem remotely as significant as, say, simply upping container-volume by 10%)

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~


Awesome re the success-rate!! Really hoping for a 100.0% this year myself, have rectified - I think!- all the issues w/ my tech from last year so I've got high-hopes!

Are leaf-boring bugs easy to spot on a BC? I'm picturing the trails they leave on my bougies (and sometimes otehr species), and their tunnels in the leaf seem to be as-wide as a blade of foliage on a BC, interested in this as I wouldn't have thought they could practically fit!

Re collecting in May, I suspect it could be done so long as the climate is welcoming to rapid growth (ie they have time to properly recover & establish before winter), definitely wouldn't be as ideal as pulling it before the growth obviously but neat to hear an anecdote on this as I actually do have every intention of doing a mid-summer collection of a single one just to satisfy my curiosity on how it'd go for me in my area/garden/etc! Good luck w/ yours, hope it comes back in spring!!!!!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~



"Oh jesus, no submersion is not a given!" lol sorry RockM! That's my bad I had remembered it as being "a given" but honestly I wish I didn't mention it because I've no dog in that fight, it's hardly even a curiosity to me because A I don't plan to do any submersions (excepting, perhaps, a single tester!) and B it's such a contentious point that derails so many of these, if it wasn't disingenuous I'd probably just say you were right and I had no disagreement but I'd sworn there was another study that focused on girth and knees not absolute height - if they're faster in well-drained then that's better for me as that's how I keep them :D Reading your personal results with it does make me wonder whether you tried intermittent submersion but again that's truly the minutiae of minutiae to me as I don't want to deal w/ submersion it just isn't something that appeals to me (if I saw a guaranteed 25% growth-increase then sure, but I know that the debate on this doesn't center on 25% it's centering on, what, <5% at most?)

Never heard of that book or of Gary Marchal, bill (and zach!) are the only 'public' authorities I knew of, thanks **a ton** for those, especially the book, just ideal/perfect for me right now man thanks!!!! [crosses fingers re finding a reasonable price tag!!]

RE knees, are you just observing this or are you proactively trying to get knees on your specimen? The concept of 'building/growing' knees has fascinated me although I fear it's another minutiae in that it'd take ages to get a proper knee to grow and match the trunking, but learning about them fascinates me (isn't it true that these taxodium distichum are the ONLY species on the planet that does this?)

Re your soil mixture, I've got a similar-enough mindset in my approach with 1 pretty major divergence I hope to clear-up my thoughts on- why would you go and include sand/potting-soil? Don't get me wrong, I use the stuff in some mixes and, on my current/established (2) BC's, I did go against my initial preference and did use un-screened peat to help with my water-retention in my non-submerged containers, however in my mind - and my intent for the coming BC's - if you're not submerging (or perhaps even if you are), you should have a porous substrate to help encourage more root-mass // container-volume, right? For instance, my 'ideal' substrate for the ones I'm planning to get - and this is still in-progress, mind you!- is something wherein I'm getting my high WHC(water.hold.capacity) via mixture and not via particle-size, for instance obviously we could plug-up a box with sand and make it slow-draining but that wouldn't be ideal, I picture the high WHC being achieved by means of aggregate choice, IE I'm thinking my "ideal" mixture to be something like the following (note: I may not be able to afford enough of this so may not use it, this is just 'ideal')

- 60% pine-bark-mulch (composted of course, @BillsBayou mentions in a vid that some places call this 'soil conditioner', hopefully that lets me find some as I've searched for almost a year now and nowhere has composted bark-mulch!)

- 25% diatomite/DE

- 10% sphagnum/peat mixture (maybe 75/25%)

- 5% ultra-coarse perlite

These ^ would be screened, the idea/hypothesis for this being that it's got the WHC & CEC desired, as well as pH, yet still has porosity for there to be more root-surface-area in any given volume of container space!

Thanks a ton for the long reply and again I'm sorry for speaking in such 'final' terms about something I wasn't positive on or even that interested in (submersion) those talks just go awry and IMO it's basically for nothing as any differences seem minimal/insignificant regardless so I hope this doesn't turn into one of those and fear it could (and would have nobody to blame but myself as I said the word first, wasn't thinking-through the implications of bringing that up!)

[Out of curiosity do you actually develop BC's to refinement yourself? This is something I almost made a thread about recently: Why the heck do 10yr+ BC's seem so-poorly developed in-general? Just disregard if you disagree with the premise I guess, but I'll watch youtubes / look at online albums and see 10yr+ in-training BC's and the lack of ramification just blows my mind! They seem to be pretty eager back-budders which just further confuses me as to how they can appear even remotely 'sparse' when they've been trained for 10yrs, it's as-if they let you develop branch-structure properly but then just don't 'fill it in' fully!]

Again thanks for the lengthy reply am always happy when you catch one of my threads (had I remembered you had BC's I'd have tagged you off the bat ;P )
I have tried periodic submersion, a couple of days, a few weeks, etc. I've been doing this a while. Didn't really see any advantage to periodic submersion, when simply using a heavier, wetter soil mix provides more than adequate water on roots. I use potting soil because it is designed to hold onto water for a long time. I include draining particles, such as sand, to break the heavier soil up a bit. Soil conditioner is basically composted pine bark. I've used it too. It's just not reliable in supply, usually hit or miss at Home Depot and my "go-to" brand isn't made anymore. It also breaks down into muck, particularly over the winter. That's not all that critical, but after a while it has to be replaced sooner than sand, which means trees might be able to go longer between repots.

The mix you've outlined and from what I've seen in your photos looks to be a bit too porous, which could killing off smaller roots as those larger spaces between particles dry out. I would also be careful with peat moss. It can dry out on soil surface and begin shedding water. It can also "channel" water inside a pot away from roots if it gets a bit dry.

And yes, I've develop BC from scratch. The biggest one I have was purchased as a sawed off stump from Zach over 20 years ago. I don't have a decent photo of it handy, or I'd post it. I'm not actively trying to develop knees. Knees happen or they don't (they mostly don't in a container).
 
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Re: borers These appeared to be trunk borers. From what I've read, that's what caused the sap leaking from several places on the trunk. I didn't actually see any of the insects. This spring will tell if the tree will make it.
 
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#16
Oooh!! Got a "good" (for me!) Q:

For my 1-year-in-development BC's that are currently dormant, when they wake I'll be doing a ~50% (length-wise) pruning of all branches excepting the top-leader/primary, to push-growth on the top / close the chop-wounds. With such minimal pruning (as the overwhelming majority of my BC's growth is in the top primaries that won't be touched), I'm not worried about any real roots//foliage mis-match, *but* what I'm very very uncertain on is whether or not I should be re-potting/up-potting these guys? They're in large-ish containers already but, like with bougies, there seems a strong desire from the tree to just fill a container **AND** their canopy-growth also seems to have the same strong linear correlation to the rate/speed the roots can spread&grow...I up-potted one of my BC's twice last year (literally just putting its container inside another and letting the escaped-roots populate the new one) and each time saw a distinct new growth-flush (or, rather, an increased speed of vegetative growth, 'flush' may not be the best word), SO I'm just very unsure what my "Container & Root Strategy", if *anything*, should be!

Thanks :D

[my instinct is to do as gentle-as-possible a slip-pot into something larger, trying not to disturb roots at all - this can be done simply on my larger BC, as it spent its entire first year in an over-sized grow-box, however the smaller one was in an oil-pan, which then got put on-top of another oil-pan w/ another 3" of substrate, which then got put on-top of a 5-gal nursery container and quickly filled that up....IE, I'm not sure I can dissemble that setup w/o some massive root-damage, considering that the main roots leaving that trunk have a mere ~3-4" before they hit the bottom of the first container! Will be playing plastic-surgeon (plastic as-in plastic-containers lol) with a razor-blade trying to dissemble as well as possible, but expecting root-loss and almost wondering if, in this specific context, it's smarter to simply do a medium root-prune instead.....) Any thoughts on how to deal w/ this one would be appreciated, I mean it's got 3 containers under it and each successive container is connected by the escaped-roots of the one above it, so it's going to be a mess and even w/ precision I'm going to have large pieces of plastic in there, I feel like I'd have to accept it and leave some plastic in the root-mass if I want any semblance of a good root-ball after getting it out of its sad&sorry setup!]

I don't get the whole uppot and another pot etc etc. Isn't the whole point to get it into a small pot??? Well when collecting it cut the base back too I mean all of these went from the ground or 60+ gal containers directly into small containers. When I start a BC from scratch it looks like a giant toothpick. It goes into the smallest container I can get it in. I get plenty of growth and branching. The branching on the one I showed is 3yrs from a stump and just was cut back very hard, probably had double the branching seen.
 

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I have tried periodic submersion, a couple of days, a few weeks, etc. I've been doing this a while. Didn't really see any advantage to periodic submersion, when simply using a heavier, wetter soil mix provides more than adequate water on roots
I should be clear that I'm not that convinced that there's practical, observable differences, only that there was a study showing that areas w/ tidal flooding had both larger-girth and more knees on average but this could be a 0.07% difference swamp-wide, I'm not picturing myself submerging anything I simply use a higher WHC substrate (I don't even restrict the drainage-holes much when making containers for BC's, as I want to reserve my ability to flood/flush things when desired and suspect that well-done containerized horticulture could well be the fastest means of growth so long as roots aren't restricted (which would require unusually large growing-setups, but I'd wager that massive grow-beds w/ more of a bonsai-mix, though still high WHC, would be the fastest means of growth/girth/etc)

Re you doing this for a while, I want to mention that since I got to this site & started posting, I've always pictured you as a long-time veteran of this art, I know there's been many times you thought I disregarded things you said and I hated that but yeah I definitely see your posts in a different light, I hold you and like 10 others here in higher regard / as "upper echelon" pro's who help amateurs so I want to thank you for helping in-general and for the posts helping me, whether this thread or in the past&future! :)

Re: borers These appeared to be trunk borers. From what I've read, that's what caused the sap leaking from several places on the trunk. I didn't actually see any of the insects. This spring will tell if the tree will make it.
Trunk-borers? Well, that just ruined my afternoon! lol seriously though WTH I never even heard of trunk-borers, leaf-borers are a PITB but manageable, this specter of trunk-borers has me *very* concerned about my plans to start ground-growing.....had been very satisfied when I listened to people's advice here telling me to get my trees off the ground, was already hating the idea of putting them on (in) the ground again but really don't see any other way to get the 'root-growth volume' I desire, can't have >100 large styrofoam coolers in my tiny backyard ROFL!!!
 
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#18
I don't get the whole uppot and another pot etc etc. Isn't the whole point to get it into a small pot??? Well when collecting it cut the base back too I mean all of these went from the ground or 60+ gal containers directly into small containers. When I start a BC from scratch it looks like a giant toothpick. It goes into the smallest container I can get it in. I get plenty of growth and branching. The branching on the one I showed is 3yrs from a stump and just was cut back very hard, probably had double the branching seen.
[edited-in: btw I meant to ask, the dead spots on the nebari/buttressing, what happened is that accidental knicks from collection? I've hurt good nebari that way myself unfortunately :/ ]

I get what you mean in a sense, however while the point is to ultimately get it into a pot (as a long-term / final point), there's the mid-term development where you'd want maximal growth and unrestricted roots is part of optimizing that, I do get something home and sever it so the new root-growth isn't coming-off of some thick root 6" below the substrate-level or something, actually here's a couple pics of a first trip's bounty from this past week to show what I mean:
20190122_230218.jpg 20190123_001814.jpg

20190123_001822.jpg
[^sorry for the ugly mess, the garden is in the middle of a massive re-organization at the moment and is "in process" at the moment...read: very ugly besides the trees ;D Also, 1st picture is just-home, before cleaning-up & pruning the root masses, the on-table pic is how they came out of the truck-bed :) ]

I wish I could get-away with simply cutting a root-mass and "slip potting" that, w/o disturbance, into a container @home, the problem I find is that BC's from a swamp seem to *require* bare-rooting due to how much crap (debris and, mostly, just other plants' roots intermingled in the BC's root-mass) is in there that, if left, would quickly deteriorate and cause a flood of decomposition cycles in the container!

How long do you spend when searching for a BC, on average, before finding one you're thinking is worth collection? Would love to hear your answer on this as well as @BillsBayou @Zach Smith @Mellow Mullet @rockm and....damnit I can't remember the last person who does a lot of BC's here....damnit I hope I can remember before my 20min window to edit closes ;P I'm aware that time isn't the best barometer here as the density of an area would influence that tremendously, I guess I'm just curious if you guys - if in a bc-dominated swamp - tend to spend 1-10min, or 20-45min, locating any particular BC you plan to collect (ie I know sometimes you'll find one immediately, other times it gets dark on you before you find anything, just hoping to get an idea of average times if in full-sun searching a bc-dense swamp :) )
 
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#19
Well, speaking for me, in my neck of the woods, it takes probably an hour per tree. The water level in the swamp here is about at sea level and that has risen perhaps 20" in my lifetime. This is partly due to land subsidence and partly to actual sea level rise. Anyway, the sections of swamps that used to dry somewhat every year, are flooded all year now. Young cypress trees need at least several months or a couple of years of growing time before they tolerate flooding. The young trees only find those conditions around the edges of the swamps now. So I have to walk a lot of "edges" to find trees. Having a fair bit of trees available, I tend to be a bit picky..............so I go through a bunch of trees to find the right one.

But to go and collect a run-of-the-mill cypress with a 3" to 4" base ............... 45 minutes ..........from leaving home, driving, finding, collecting, and potting up. I'm pretty lucky in that respect.
 
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#20
How long do you spend when searching for a BC, on average, before finding one you're thinking is worth collection
I'm too lazy to go traipsing around in wet mucky cypress stands. I've know some young guys that like to dig em. I get what I want and help them out with their trees. They spend hours and hours looking though. They collect on a several hundred acre property where they know the property owner. They walk around it all the time hunting trees and animals.
 

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