Field grown Birch

Paulpash

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This tree I've grown in my mother in law's beds that I 'acquired' for bonsai when she got ill and I had to do the maintenance :(. It's around 15 years old as best I can remember. It seeded itself there and for once I decided it could stay as it was in a gap. Normally, I'd weed them out - at least half a dozen seed themselves there every year.

I've dug it up probably 3 times for root work, chopped it for movement & taper then replanted it. This is my 3rd Birch: fungus and complete die back of a trunk have been my penance for learning how to develop this species.

I wired it out completely today after work. It's not the way Birch would grow but I've taken some artistic license.

I don't tend to photograph stuff in the ground - it's usually just a mass of foliage and stems so here are a few pics dug up and in a can. I think it's 3 full seasons from the first to the last taken today.

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It deserves a pot next year so I'll need to get searching. Any suggestions welcome - it's a feminine tree so a dark coloured oval seems apt. I might look at Erin if they do them large enough. Thanks for reading.
 

GGB

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nice, difficult species but I'm always tempted by the native ones near me.
 

BobbyLane

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i love the styling on it, has a real spooky feel which flows well with the trunk
not the typical Birch look, maybe something more sinister.....

this is in fact a birch in my files, also not the typical
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yep something from Erin will work well, maybe get Vic to suggest or make something for it.
 

Paulpash

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nice, difficult species but I'm always tempted by the native ones near me.
Yeah I learnt never to chop to a bare trunk and expect it to keep all the top growth. 5 years growing the first section down the swanee. You have to plan ahead with chopping and get lots of growth above IN LEAF then chop. ALWAYS seal big cuts - fungal diseases have a buffet on Birch too :(
 
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Paulpash

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i love the styling on it, has a real spooky feel which flows well with the trunk
not the typical Birch look, maybe something more sinister.....

this is in fact a birch in my files, also not the typical
View attachment 252734

yep something from Erin will work well, maybe get Vic to suggest or make something for it.

This one has quite feminine, curvy lines. I grew it a bit taller so the cascading branches would hang better and the trunk size wouldn't seem so big. I have too many big trunk trees so I'm also doing a few literati and rafts to mix it up a bit. I really like the twisted Birch in your post.
 

BobbyLane

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This one has quite feminine, curvy lines. I grew it a bit taller so the cascading branches would hang better and the trunk size wouldn't seem so big. I have too many big trunk trees so I'm also doing a few literati and rafts to mix it up a bit. I really like the twisted Birch in your post.

yep. more in terms of the branching i see some similarities. great tree
 

Paulpash

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Pretty cool field grown birch Paul
I like Aussie Bonsai Bloke - he's entertaining, honest and is obviously experienced. He's got this Birch in a nice deep pot and has allowed it free growth. This is the key to developing these trees. I know they have a bad 'rap' about dropping branches that I think @Maros and @Walter Pall mentioned but they set buds at the base of branches so they are relatively easy to regrow.
 

Paulpash

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Great movement. Looks awesome!
Thanks, @MrWunderful. If you look at the first picture it's pretty straightforward to see where the chops were made. It's important to prep the next section you intend to use to continue building the trunk - blindly cutting into the trunk and leaving nothing above to take over is very risky - Birch are happy to just shed the entire upper trunk and grow again from basal suckers. I'd also advise never chopping when it's dormant.
 

BobbyLane

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I like Aussie Bonsai Bloke - he's entertaining, honest and is obviously experienced. He's got this Birch in a nice deep pot and has allowed it free growth. This is the key to developing these trees. I know they have a bad 'rap' about dropping branches that I think @Maros and @Walter Pall mentioned but they set buds at the base of branches so they are relatively easy to regrow.

im still growing a betula pendula on my front balcony, its put on so much girth since planting it in a flower pot coming on 3 years now. im getting tempted to just put it in the ground now and let it really get going.
 

MrWunderful

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Thanks, @MrWunderful. If you look at the first picture it's pretty straightforward to see where the chops were made. It's important to prep the next section you intend to use to continue building the trunk - blindly cutting into the trunk and leaving nothing above to take over is very risky - Birch are happy to just shed the entire upper trunk and grow again from basal suckers. I'd also advise never chopping when it's dormant.

I have a grow box with a ton of deciduous material in it that I have got a lot of knowledge from when it comes to trunk chops/healing etc. I can see in your birch that the chops were well thought out, and hope that mine come out similar (my informal uprights at least 😝 ) im only about 3 years in to my deciduous ground growing adventure.
 

Paulpash

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im still growing a betula pendula on my front balcony, its put on so much girth since planting it in a flower pot coming on 3 years now. im getting tempted to just put it in the ground now and let it really get going.

Much better route - you'll be waiting ages otherwise unless you want a small tree. Do you still have the allotment?
 

Paulpash

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I have a grow box with a ton of deciduous material in it that I have got a lot of knowledge from when it comes to trunk chops/healing etc. I can see in your birch that the chops were well thought out, and hope that mine come out similar (my informal uprights at least 😝 ) im only about 3 years in to my deciduous ground growing adventure.
Stick with it :) it's very rewarding to grow a tree from the very beginning and you also learn a lot. Do you have any space to put stuff in the ground or are you solely using big containers?
 

BobbyLane

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Much better route - you'll be waiting ages otherwise unless you want a small tree. Do you still have the allotment?
yeh i do, i have a vacant spot for the birch.may just drop it in, in a week or so.actually a good time is when we have a few days of rain n clouds, looking that way now
 

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