Eastern Red Cedar......sometimes you just don't know

Joe Dupre'

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You just don't know until you look. I spied this ERC a few months back on the roadside and have just been driving by it. It looked like the typical scalped tree-- one inch trunk with a ball of foliage on top. I stopped for a closer look. It kept getting bigger and bigger the closer I got. I reached around the base........hmmmm ..... about 2 1/2" in diameter with branches down to ground level! It was literally growing partly under the edge of the blacktop...... the reason for so few roots. I planted it in my grow bed where it will hopefully recuperate for a year or two.

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Shogun610

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Very cool the foliage is better than most ERC
 

Joe Dupre'

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Thanks. I find them mostly similar to this, although this one is a bruiser. The roadside mowers scalp them and then they bush back out. Crude bonsai trunk chops.
 

Brian Van Fleet

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Planting a collected juniper in the ground is recipe for disaster. Much better results with potting it tightly in a VERY snug container, or even using the “Papoose Wrap” technique. Read about it here:
Post in thread 'Alaska Yellow Cedar': https://www.bonsainut.com/threads/alaska-yellow-cedar.19823/#post-272321
A modified version here:
Survival rate was over 90%. Not to be viewed as advocating for ERC bonsai😂😂😂, but I do wish you best of luck.
 

Shogun610

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Planting a collected juniper in the ground is recipe for disaster. Much better results with potting it tightly in a VERY snug container, or even using the “Papoose Wrap” technique. Read about it here:
Post in thread 'Alaska Yellow Cedar': https://www.bonsainut.com/threads/alaska-yellow-cedar.19823/#post-272321
A modified version here:
Survival rate was over 90%. Not to be viewed as advocating for ERC bonsai😂😂😂, but I do wish you best of luck.
Hey I’m trying ERC myself. I can’t afford a decent Itoigawa or Shimpaku so natives is next best thing.
 

Joe Dupre'

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Hey I’m trying ERC myself. I can’t afford a decent Itoigawa or Shimpaku so natives is next best thing.
Find one you like and plant it in the ground. They grow very fast if watered and fertilized like your regular bonsai. I planted 5 as a living fence 3 1/2 years ago. They were index finger sized and now they are 1 1/2" to almost 3" in diameter. The smallest one just doesn't get the sunlight the other get. Depending on how you prune them, you should get some killer material in 2-3 years.
 

Eckhoffw

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Planting a collected juniper in the ground is recipe for disaster. Much better results with potting it tightly in a VERY snug container, or even using the “Papoose Wrap” technique. Read about it here:
Post in thread 'Alaska Yellow Cedar': https://www.bonsainut.com/threads/alaska-yellow-cedar.19823/#post-272321
A modified version here:
Survival rate was over 90%. Not to be viewed as advocating for ERC bonsai😂😂😂, but I do wish you best of luck.
I guess I don’t get it. You wrap the collected root ball in burlap then plant in wood box? Does the burlap benefit the roots?
 

Joe Dupre'

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I wouldn't say I'd take an ERC over some other, more popular juniper, but I really don't see where all the negative comments come from. I mean, they grow pretty fast, backbud fairly readily, have nice bark and are readily available. Yes, they do throw juvenile foliage, but that's about the only "fault" I can come up with.
 

Shogun610

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I wouldn't say I'd take an ERC over some other, more popular juniper, but I really don't see where all the negative comments come from. I mean, they grow pretty fast, backbud fairly readily, have nice bark and are readily available. Yes, they do throw juvenile foliage, but that's about the only "fault" I can come up with.
Agreed , mine has leggy branches but I hope in future it back buds w the nice scale foliage, removal of lower branches to get a taller formal upright.. worst case maybe graft erc closer to trunk and start over.. wanted to recreate the feeling of a tall ERC on a farm you’d see next to a barn or whatever
 

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Joe Dupre'

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Agreed , mine has leggy branches but I hope in future it back buds w the nice scale foliage, removal of lower branches to get a taller formal upright.. worst case maybe graft erc closer to trunk and start over.. wanted to recreate the feeling of a tall ERC on a farm you’d see next to a barn or whatever
Getting them to backbud is a bit tricky. I find that they need to pick up a little growth momentum and then they get pruned or pinched. Yes.....pinched! The "momentum" stage is hard to describe but you get in sync with the tree after a while. It's important that you don't pinch or prune every new shoot. Remember, the foliage provides the food. Take away too much too often and the tree's vigor stalls.
 

Shogun610

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Getting them to backbud is a bit tricky. I find that they need to pick up a little growth momentum and then they get pruned or pinched. Yes.....pinched! The "momentum" stage is hard to describe but you get in sync with the tree after a while. It's important that you don't pinch or prune every new shoot. Remember, the foliage provides the food. Take away too much too often and the tree's vigor stalls.
Thanks I’ll did that to my quiver… what do you think of the styling
 

Joe Dupre'

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It has the proportions of a large tree, so that's a check. As you said, it's a little leggy. Get it super healthy and feed the heck out of it. I've come to the conclusion that you can't "make" a tree backbud. You have to give it the best environment and IT says when it backbuds.
 

Joe Dupre'

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Any more photos of this one?
Not yet. I planted in the ground for a couple of years to get super healthy. Many of the roots were actually growing under the edge of the blacktop and couldn't be saved.
 
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