Cal juniper , part II

Dwight

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Not sure how safe this is cause the last time I bought a Calli and posted it here I killed it right away. Hopefully I did learn something from that nightmare. Anyway , over Easter weekend I went to Albuquerque for a workshop with Cindy Read from San Diego. She brought some trees along and I grabed this little Cal juniper. It's aboyt 20" by 20". Simple little thing but should be fun and it was very reasonably priced. What do you think ?
 

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edprocoat

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Very nice little tree! Looks like something you would see in the desert.

You wrote, "Not sure how safe this is cause the last time I bought a Calli and posted it here I killed it right away." So you think the posting it here had something to do with killing it? The old B-Nut jonering! LOL ;)

If you don't mind my asking, what did you pay for this nice tree? I was wondering how prices are out in Texas on Bonsai. For example, here in Ohio prices are almost double than what you would find in Fl, and not just on tropicals as you would expect. Florida has many more nurseries dedicated to Bonsai as its an agriculture area with great weather year round and I know that parts of Texas are tropical too, its just so dam big a state and I do not know where El paso is located that is why I asked about the price.

Good luck with this one, its a great start, looks really old to begin with and has a great aged looking trunk. It has Fukinagashi, "windswept style" written all over it.

ed
 

Dwight

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Si , right now plans are to just keep it alive for a year or so. I kinda like Ed's idea of windswept.

Ed , I paid $150 for it but it was kinda like a friends deal. I got it at a workshop where the instructor brought some trees to sell so I'm sure the retail on it would be nearer $300. The nearest nurseries to me are in Dallas , San Antonio or Austin , al of which are over 600 mi so I buy mostly from people I meet here or find by word of mouth.
 

edprocoat

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Si , right now plans are to just keep it alive for a year or so. I kinda like Ed's idea of windswept.

Ed , I paid $150 for it but it was kinda like a friends deal. I got it at a workshop where the instructor brought some trees to sell so I'm sure the retail on it would be nearer $300. The nearest nurseries to me are in Dallas , San Antonio or Austin , al of which are over 600 mi so I buy mostly from people I meet here or find by word of mouth.

Yeah, it does sound like a "friends deal" at that price! Here in Ohio that tree would easily be $300 - $400, nice find.

ed
 

Dwight

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I think these Cal guys have a thing going. All the big shows and conventions seem to have a large vendor area ( shades of the Green Club ) where they just sell stuff to each other at what we think are rediculously low prices. A friend was at the Cal Bonsai Federation show last week end and tells me he saw the best Cal junni he had ever seen for $600. I think I'm gonna quit buting trees and start a savings pool just to go to GSBF convention next year just to see the vendors area.
 

edprocoat

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I think these Cal guys have a thing going. All the big shows and conventions seem to have a large vendor area ( shades of the Green Club ) where they just sell stuff to each other at what we think are rediculously low prices. A friend was at the Cal Bonsai Federation show last week end and tells me he saw the best Cal junni he had ever seen for $600. I think I'm gonna quit buting trees and start a savings pool just to go to GSBF convention next year just to see the vendors area.

Dwight, you may be right! This could be the great Calif. Bonsai conspiracy, they probably are the reason the state is trying to break off the continent, all those little collected trees removed from the cracks in the earth causing instability, they will not be happy until they loosen it enough that the whole place falls into the sea. Such unabashed Bonsai greed will not go unpunished!:)

Personally, I have never been to any show but it does seem that the best buys on the really nice trees happen at the shows. I would say the best part besides being able to see the tree in person before you buy it would be the fact you know its been properly cared for until the moment you bought it and that would go a long way towards making the price even more reasonable. How many times have you heard or seen trees bought online and shipped that arrive in less than healthy conditions? Knowing it was well cared for and in premium condition would be worth the admission price, tenfold.

ed
 

october

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Hello Dwight.. This is very nice material with amazing potential.. No disrespect towards Ed's opinion. However, I do not think windswept will work for this tree. To me, the tree seems powerful but does not have any curves in the trunk. You would have a somewhat straight/slant poweful trunk with all these waving branches. I don't think thats a good combination. I do however feel that with the apex pulled down and then pulling down and letting the folage grown downward. I feel you would have a poweful and stunning tree. Here is a virt of what I mean. Just my opinion..:D

Rob

Cal20juniper200011-1.jpg
 
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Dwight

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Thanks Rob , definately something to consider. Right now I'm just studying the tree and trying to get it through it's first summer here. I do understand whet you mean about the windswept possibly not being right for this trunk.
 

Si Nguyen

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I think these Cal guys have a thing going. All the big shows and conventions seem to have a large vendor area ( shades of the Green Club ) where they just sell stuff to each other at what we think are rediculously low prices. A friend was at the Cal Bonsai Federation show last week end and tells me he saw the best Cal junni he had ever seen for $600. I think I'm gonna quit buting trees and start a savings pool just to go to GSBF convention next year just to see the vendors area.

I was at that California Bonsai Society show last week too. The prices were really really good, especially on the last day! Somebody donated their entire collection to CBS and those trees got put in auction and raffle; and they were incredibly cheap! 2-3 hundred dollars for some awesome old yamadori. A friend of mine got a huge juniper for the price of a raffle ticket. The auction is where the best deals are found. Most people here are so jaded that sometime a perfectly good tree is sold to a novice for almost nothing.
It is not a bad idea for you to make a nice driving trip to California for a day or two and pick up some good deals. You're not that far away. I have driven to Texas and back to Cali a few times.
 

Dwight

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And even the price of gas isn't high enough to cancell out the advantage of actually seing the trees. Do you have any recomendations Si ?
 

rockm

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Nice tree for the money. I agree windswept might not really suit it.

FWIW, easterners jonesing for a Cali juniper might as well invest in swamp land or in buying the Brooklyn Bridge. Cali junipers do very poorly in areas that get alot of rain and winter temps without constant, knowledgeable attention. They develop root rot very easily in our relatively wet, colder climate. They are desert plants and ther roots aren't well suited to handle excess moisture. The National Arb has been nursing a Ben Oki-donated Cali juniper back to health for the last five years after it came pretty close to dieing of root rot. Soil with excellent, instead of just terrific, drainage was finally used and it seems to be coming back, but that's with care from horticultural experts...
 

Dwight

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You're right there. Even here in the high desert of west Texas the folk I know in Cal recomend pure pumice , decomposed granite , lave or a mix of these. I'm using pumice and lava and it drains as fast as I water it. I do have to check the moisture in the pot a little more carefully than with akadama but I'm thinking of switching all my native junipers to lava and pumice.
 

Vance Wood

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It has been my experience from conversations with many bonsai growers that Cali's do not survive long out side of California. I certianly hope I am wrong but I have seen no evidence that I am. I know at least a half a dozen reputable and experienced bonsai growers with many years of experience who have had the same experience. They may keep them alive two, maybe three years, then they die.
 

Dav4

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New England Bonsai Gardens in Bellingham, MA have several very old, wonderful CA juni specimens that have been there since I first went there maybe over a decade ago. They do spend a good deal of the year in one of their greenhouses, and I couldn't tell you what substrate they're planted in.
 

Vance Wood

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New England Bonsai Gardens in Bellingham, MA have several very old, wonderful CA juni specimens that have been there since I first went there maybe over a decade ago. They do spend a good deal of the year in one of their greenhouses, and I couldn't tell you what substrate they're planted in.

That's good to hear. I would have some questions though. I have also heard that these trees will survive outside of California if they have grafted Shimpaku foliage, but not their own.
 

Si Nguyen

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And even the price of gas isn't high enough to cancell out the advantage of actually seing the trees. Do you have any recomendations Si ?

Hi Dwight, the best thing to do is connect with some dealers or people over here and have them hold the trees for you until you can do the long drive, maybe once or twice a year. I know of a few professional collectors with hundreds of Cali junipers for sale so I will look out for a good deal for you. Bob Pressler at Kimura Nursery in LA also has many for sale. I heard he has a lot of clients from out of states. The most important thing is be patient and hold out for the best trees, like one with a lot of twists or curves and deadwood.

Your tree here is very nice. It is very workable. For now, make sure to feed with only organic fertilizers like cottonseed meal or the expensive Japanese import rapeseed cakes. But the most important thing is let your water sit a day or two to evaporate the chlorine before watering . Every bonsai garden should have a nice big ceramic pot of water to use anyway. You should water it daily, and even twice a day when temps are above 85. They love it hot but the small pot gets too hot and dry out too fast.
 
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Dav4

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That's good to hear. I would have some questions though. I have also heard that these trees will survive outside of California if they have grafted Shimpaku foliage, but not their own.
...definitely unadulterated, 100% CA junipers. Maybe someone in that neck of the woods could snap a pic or two to post here...
 

Bill S

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I think I will be going next month, I'll get some info on their treatment etc..

Nicks book says when watering a cal juni here in New England, you water liberally the ground next to the pot. Ryan Neil thinks that it will be able to be figured out.

I did have the thought that once in a pot you change the growing dynamics of the tree, and maybe rather than a high and dry tree it needs to be treated more normally, keeping good drainage or as rockm added re the Arboretum excellent drainage.
 

Dwight

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Thats kinda my thinking. Any time we take a tree out of the ground and put it in a pot the natural conditions under which the tree grows are out the window. We have one seed and alligator junipers here that grow in conditions similar to Cal junipers but when a pot we treat them like shimpacu. In fact if the soil is correct ( VERY well draining and low water retension , i.e. pumice or exfoliated granite ) it's hard to over water these guys. They also enjoy misting when it's hot.
 
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