Eric, do you use a larger percentage of akadama in the soil mix for the containers? I'm just wondering if there should be more substance for the roots to grow into besides the air spaces between the lava and pumice.
No, I use a standard 1/3, 1/3, 1/3 mixture. The proportions don't have to be exact in my opinion. You want the trees to get plenty of water, but not more than they can absorb. I have found that if you cut the soil to a leaner mixture, like 1/5 akadama, that you get trees that are harder to keep vigorous. I have three that I did this to last year and they seem to need more fertilizing attention than the others....and more water applications.Eric, do you use a larger percentage of akadama in the soil mix for the containers? I'm just wondering if there should be more substance for the roots to grow into besides the air spaces between the lava and pumice.
I believe they are 14" square by about 11" deep. Most of them are now broken. The plastic is not super durable; the sun seems to make it brittle after about 3-4 years. The smaller ones are sometimes more durable, but I've had good and bad batches.How large is your 2nd pond-basket in these photos?
Hey Eric,If you think about it, you need to get the scarring to be more severe at the bottom and less severe as you go up so you don't get reverse taper on the trunk. But I've not tried it so perhaps the actual results after 8-10 years is not what I expect.
That's an interesting and valuable point. Thank you.I've actually got the problem of too much root spread on some of the trees. The near-pancake effect will make it hard to get the roots into a shohin container without making a bad cut. That means that I'll have to allow the trees to get larger and control the root spread to get them into a pot that it proportionally appropriate.
I repotted the tree into an over-size bonsai container last winter from the basket. It grew well over the summer.The tree above a couple years later, this one is actually from a younger batch but coming along nicely, I think it is currently 6 years old:
I started the 2006 batch with 125 seeds, about 110 of which sprouted. But after potting them into containers I whittled it down to about 50 relatively quickly. The problem is that the volume of soil you need once you start going into the baskets gets really expensive and I don't really have the space in my yard either.On this note, how many seedlings did you start with and how many do you currently have?
I actually didn't use any process on mine. Jonas says that cold stratification increases germination rate, but about 90% of mine germinated without it. I think the freshness of the seed is the key to success. You can cold stratify for 30 days if you think it will help. Soak in a glass of water for two days and then drain onto a moist paper towel. Place that inside a plastic bag in the fridge for the 30 days. Watch for emerging root tips and plant them out before the roots grow long if they do germinate in the fridgeCan you describe the process you used to germinate the seeds? I bought a batch of 1000 seeds and have had them sitting in the freezer since they arrived. I wasn't sure if I needed to soak them then put them in the fridge until spring or if there was another method.