5yr native tree challenge - Olienthout (Olea europaea)

Stella

Yamadori
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Pretoria, South Africa
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Keen to get my tree in for the challenge.

Details of tree:
Native to Africa (large parts of South Africa and local to me) as well as some other countries including Asia and parts of Europe
Our Climate - warm and dry
summer ranging from 28-45 Celsius - Oct - April
winter ranging from 3-15 Celsius - May - July ( the very cold season is really very short. also no snow)
spring and autumn about non existent - goes from cold to hot in a day or 2 and other way around
I'm is a summer rainfall area

This specific tree: Won in a club draw around Oct 2020.
was a bare stump with 1 new shoot at the top - I don't have any pictures from then
Work done by me: wired some new shoots 2 or 3 times
basic pruning back to 2 leaves when new shoots get to about 10 cm
no branch selection yet - just kind of wiring new shoots as they come

We are going into winter now, so very little will be done in the next 2-3 months, just basic maintenance pruning.
Planning to repot (still in a training pot) in August using a newly formulated bonsai growing medium developed by our club.

pictures to follow
 

Stella

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Proper photos of the tree taken yesterday. current height at 24 cm.
In the 1st pic on the left, the high root I really dislike (will discuss at a club meeting before I remove it,)
3rd picture would more or less end up to be the front as I want to build a little fairy house underneath those roots..
 

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HorseloverFat

Imperial Masterpiece
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That’s a neat tree, that I am wholly unfamiliar with. The foliage is cool... those leaves are kind of thick, eh? Storin’ water, i’d assume.

Curiosity forces me to ask...

Are there any MID-African bonsai artists?

Or do you have to pretty much stick to the “European Reservation”?

🤓
 

Stella

Yamadori
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Thank you. I'am very excited about this tree. as a beginner the few trees I have is really all still just sticks in pots (training pots) ..hehehe

We have a very big bonsai community in South Africa. a few of the know bonsai people have a lot of international experience and puts in a lot of effort to get international bonsai experts to come visit us and do workshops and conventions here.

Our club has a nice you tube channel as well:

The very nice thing of the Olienhout is that the leaves reduce extremely well.
Check out this video that our Club mentor did on one:
 

HorseloverFat

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Whenever I see Oleas that I can get.. in my area of the world.. they are either starter plants, lanky houseplants.. ORRR big ol’ gnarly stumps, most-likely rooted sideways, upside-down ect. with chutes in seemingly ALL the wrong places, for 200-500 US dollars... eeesh!

This has made any “flirtation” I had with this specie, never leading to me actually “taking one home”
 

Stella

Yamadori
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Pretoria, South Africa
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Whenever I see Oleas that I can get.. in my area of the world.. they are either starter plants, lanky houseplants.. ORRR big ol’ gnarly stumps, most-likely rooted sideways, upside-down ect. with chutes in seemingly ALL the wrong places, for 200-500 US dollars... eeesh!

This has made any “flirtation” I had with this specie, never leading to me actually “taking one home”
o my word. that's insane.
Here you can get a very very nice one for between R400-R1000 ($30-$70) (mine was priced at $35)
 

Stella

Yamadori
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Finally it is repotting time here.
here is some pics from all the angles.
Some issues I have:
in pic 1, the root right below my hand I don't like at all
The roots opposite that one is also a sore eye for me, but removing them might create more issues as then it will show reverse taper
so far i see 2 possible fronts, but I cannot seem to find the right front as yet
 

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Stella

Yamadori
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With clean roots, I can see a bit better at how much work there still is with this lovely tree.

7 and 8 are probably the best fronts. i have not yet done any branch/shoot selection as I cannot decide what the best front might be
Changing the angle as in pic 9 might actually really work as it hides the big exposed roots that I dislike a bit

Wild olives do not like root work. So I have only removed 3 large roots that was going straight down and crossing.
I Will probably repot again next season when I can do it with a mentor and remove some more of the problem roots

big question for me now - do I lift out of the pot more exposing more roots, or rather keep removing roots from the bottom....?????
the root mass is very deep and loads of twisted and awkward roots
 

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Stella

Yamadori
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Planted at a new angle and a new medium. Perlite and akadama.
It is already showing new growth but will wait at least another few weeks to do some wiring.
 

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Perrywinkle

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Very nice, already looks like a winner to me 😁. I also learned that you have olive trees in ZA
 
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