First post - Introduction

g-rat

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Hello, This is my first post, but I have been lurking around the forum for a while. I have learned a lot by reading through these posts and it has deeply inspired me to try my hand at the art of bonsai.

I collected 3 different sized eastern red cedar trees a few days ago. The trees grow abundantly here in the southeast US and are often considered junk trees. I know that eastern red cedars are not ideal for bonsai, but have read that they are great for beginners. I also like the idea of taking something that is unwanted and turning it into something beautiful and valuable.

Here is a picture of the trees that I collected, each of the trees have some movement, so I believe that they all have potential.. They are just sitting in potting soil at the moment, but I plan to get them into some smaller pots with better soil soon. I do not know exactly what style of bonsai I want to go with yet, but my plan is to allow them to grow undisturbed in the smaller pots for a year or so, then transfer to proper bonsai pots and begin training.

IMG_6951.jpg IMG_6948.jpg

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sorce

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You're supposed to buy a Gibson!

Welcome to Crazy!

At Guitar Center, the best "beginners guitar" was a 2 thousand dollar Gibson that won't lose tune, plays well, is lighter, and Final!

In this way, ERC isn't a good beginner tree.

Sorce
 

HorseloverFat

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Greetings in morse code, tapped with fret-hand callouses, Traveller.

I was conversing with the Woody Dwarves... they say, “Learn on a Martin... then play Fender (REAL fender).. Washburn and PRS are nice, too.... so are gibson’s..... It’s about the music you play... when someone ASKS what kind.. your answer should be, “Good Music”..(If that seems like nonsense....disregard). 🤣🤣

You CAN play polka on a 5-string, down-tuned Washburn... if you’ve got the vision..

It’s Funny.. I was actually JUST speaking (in person) with Sorce about this... Learning to play guitar as a lil’ guy... on a HUGE “cowboy guitar”.... it was much more difficult to play, cause y’know, 8 year-old’s hands are tiny... and not SUUUPER muscular.... but I learned on it....

Once I got a proper guitar, I could REAAALLY play it.

ERCs will make you appreciate... other trees. 🤣

But you’ve a good foot in the door, blunt half-rolled... This place is an excellent, communal library of knowledge and experience... READ all you can.. then start filling your own shelves.

Pleasure to make your acquaintance!
 

g-rat

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Thanks for the replies; I play guitar so the explanation comparing tree species to guitar brands made a lot of sense to me.
So if ERCs are comparable to a $100 acoustic, what tree types would be comparable to a Strat and a Les Paul?

If bonsai doesn’t work out to be a good hobby I’ll just focus all of my energy on heavy metal polka 🤟
 

HorseloverFat

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Thanks for the replies; I play guitar so the explanation comparing tree species to guitar brands made a lot of sense to me.
So if ERCs are comparable to a $100 acoustic, what tree types would be comparable to a Strat and a Les Paul?

If bonsai doesn’t work out to be a good hobby I’ll just focus all of my energy on heavy metal polka 🤟
It’s a lot more about goal.. and the guitar PLAYER..

For instance... I’ve been playing guitar since I was 8., it started with classical lessons.. on a huge, tough to play guitar... it was MORE difficult.. so I got better quicker..

Now... I’d USE a 100 dollar acoustic and make it sound WAY better than less-experienced, lazier musicians could make a 4,200-dollar guitar sound.. but at my skill level.. I’d never SEEK a “100-dollar” acoustic.. I hope this makes sense.

... seek out Acers, Junis like procumbens, Ficus and endemic invasives... I have found these to all lie In between the lines of awefully difficult and numbingly easy.. all will reward you...

To answer your question.. about Some of the “Strats” of this world (in specie)
JBP/JWP

Any Acer Palmatum with a cultivar name that sounds like it came from DragonBall Z

Chojubai

The “lil” Azaleas...

The list DOES go on and on..

Beginners can make strats sound like poo.... Veterans can SHRED on warped basement acoustics with 4 missing strings...
 

Pitoon

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Welcome to BNut!

ERC are notoriously known to fail as bonsai when collected.......growing by seed may be more helpful.

Don't get discouraged if they don't make it.
 

RKatzin

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Aside from all the guitar references, Guild blonde jumbo, I bought new in1995, I make a joyful noise, I only want to add: don't go to small pots with these guys. Put them in pots big enough to accommodate the roots with minimal cutting. Give them room to grow. Let them recover from the collection completely and then some, until they're growing strong. Then, when they're going strong and nice and big you can consider some work on them.
 

hinmo24t

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welcome. good luck. i had about 5 of these and they all did take to rootwork and repots and grew, before i decided i didnt want them because of orange cedar rust fungus.

shame really, the color of it and natural lawnmower pruning looked pretty nice 20200614_201841_2.jpgalongside my crabapple bonsai
20200614_201803_3.jpg
 

Forsoothe!

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Growing seasons around the world vary widely and it is difficult to get a perspective on what someone says when we don't know where in the world they are. If you go to the upper right hand corner and click on your Icon, you can add your location and people will be able to customize advice for you.




<<<<< It will show here.
 

cornfed

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I’ll just focus all of my energy on heavy metal polka 🤟

You'll laugh, but one of my favorite local bands is the Bolzen Beer Band who does just that! Well... punk polka might be a better description.

They rented a school bus once, got a group of people on it and handed us all lyric sheets. Then we left town and "flash mobbed" small-town bars. They played the song as 30 of us crammed in the door singing along off our lyric sheets (I've got a wife at home was the name of the song). We all bought a beer and got back on the bus as quickly as we left. I was pretty far gone by the time we got back to town. Super fun guys! The looks on the locals' faces as we entered playing loud polka was priceless. They were so confused!

Welcome to the board!
 

PA_Penjing

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P.S I learned to play guitar on a $5 ebay classical acoustic with heavy steel strings and about an inch of action to the fretboard. But that was before the internet could tell me I was learning wrong.
 

Forsoothe!

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It may just be my shut-in existence, but I can only remember one, single ERC being a "nice bonsai". How about all you people that have nice ones post of photo here so we can all see them great trees?
 

HorseloverFat

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It may just be my shut-in existence, but I can only remember one, single ERC being a "nice bonsai". How about all you people that have nice ones post of photo here so we can all see them great trees?
Aaaand if pictures posted... me-thinks “Time-survived in a pot” is a necessary variable to the picture’s presentation. 🤣

My two ERCs that I attempted... are actually existing as “insulating matter” (as wood ash) in some bricks that I have cast... I’d post the picture.. but I can’t.... remember... which..... brick.
🤓

Not trying to say it can’t be done... it might!... Just saying it’s rare... and they didn’t cooperate for ME.
 

PA_Penjing

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It may just be my shut-in existence, but I can only remember one, single ERC being a "nice bonsai". How about all you people that have nice ones post of photo here so we can all see them great trees?
There aren't tons of examples online, fortunately some members on here have great examples and experience to share. Here's some pics of what you could get to, granted most of these trees weren't done by beginners but you have to start somewhere. Below are some of the better ERC I've seen. The bonsai club in central PA has had some truly beautiful ones pass though but I can't imagine where I'd find pictures.
Aaaand if pictures posted... me-thinks “Time-survived in a pot” is a necessary variable to the picture’s presentation. 🤣
I wasn't aware that they did poorly in pots, I thought this was one of the easier natives to play with. Joke might be on me there though..

Regardless OP, I wouldn't let anyone online discourage you. So many folks on here dig up great starts and post them on this site only to have everyone tell them to throw the tree away before we ever get to see what it could become. Based (very reasonably) on the fact that the foliage isn't as tight as shimpaku. But by that reasoning why would we ever grow any tree species that wasn't the smallest most compact in the genus? I'm not saying they are as good as shimpaku but they are free and your first tree might not be the best one on your bench in 10 years. Plus RMJ seems to be well respected as bonsai despite being nearly genetically identical to ERC and sometimes even hybridized with it. Now RMJ have incredible trunks when dug up from the rockies, hard to find in ERC. But once again by that reason why then, grow any tree that hasn't been harvest from a Colorado mountain peak. I think this species gets to much hate, yeah it's just whatever but it beats the hell out of some other natives that largely get free passes like american beech and ponderosa pine. Both great species if you're planning on an imperial sized tree
 

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Crawforde

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Yea, don’t give up.
I play the harmonica.
the entire world will try to discourage you.
but hey, I sit out in my tree area and try to play classical music on a ten hole harmonica.
ERC can’t be that dumb, and some people pull it off and get nice trees.
enjoy the ride.
also, a word of advice.
get a couple of willows. Just cut a few pieces off of a tree and stick them in some dirt.
they grow like weeds and keep your hands busy enough to save your nicer trees.
and who knows, ya might get a nice willow out of it, or accidentally learn something about pruning or wiring. And, every one you kill, may be a nice tree you don’t.
 

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