Help identifying baby bonsai’s

ALHalliday

Seedling
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Hey there! I got a bonsai growing kit for my birthday 4 months ago and I have three baby bonsais now but I really need some help identifying them, I think two are the same and the third is different. I’ve got this far I want to make sure I’m taking care of them properly so any help would be appreciated!:D
 

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Bonsai Nut

Nuttier than your average Nut
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Welcome to the site! Can you tell us where you live so we can give you care info based on your location? Good job getting those seeds to germinate!

The first two are the same species, but I can't place them. Looks like a hawthorn (crataegus sp.) The last looks like a zelkova.

Can you tell us where you got the kit, or what seeds it was supposed to contain?
 

HorseloverFat

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Agreed.. Hawthorn and Elm!

Thundering Footsteps overwhelming you from nearby, traveller. Don’t fret, ‘tis simply the dance of The Woody Dwarves.. a common occurrence, here, in the TinyForest. (I got real Rod Serling-y, there)

This places harbors an immensely satisfying spring of shared knowledge/experience... drink when you are thirsty, give when you are full...

Pleasure to make your acquaintance!

(edit: thinking of my “Hawthorn” guess.... and... well.. I am, myself, growing Cratageus from seed.. and most germination doesn’t even happen the first YEAR.. at least for MY endemics... so I COULD be wrong.)
 

LittleDingus

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Hey there! I got a bonsai growing kit for my birthday 4 months ago
What kind of kit did you receive? Were the seeds part of the kit? I would hope there would have been some explanation of the seed included if it were included. Even a list of potential options would help immensely!

...and welcome to the forum!
 

ALHalliday

Seedling
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Leeds
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Welcome to the site! Can you tell us where you live so we can give you care info based on your location? Good job getting those seeds to germinate!

The first two are the same species, but I can't place them. Looks like a hawthorn (crataegus sp.) The last looks like a zelkova.

Can you tell us where you got the kit, or what seeds it was supposed to contain?
Thank you:) I live in Leeds uk, cheers! I got the kit as a present and it said mixed bonsai seeds on the packets included so I have no idea what the possibilities could be sorry
 

LittleDingus

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Thank you:) I live in Leeds uk, cheers! I got the kit as a present and it said mixed bonsai seeds on the packets included so I have no idea what the possibilities could be sorry

If you go to your avatar in the top right, you can get to a menu option for Account Details. In there, you can add your location and grow zone. Nearest metro is good enough. Then that information will be to the left of every post. It's really helpful to have that information when giving advice and then people won't have to ask all the time :)

Typically consumer level bonsai "kits" are packed with common bonsai varieties...typically things like maples, elms, wisteria, and Japanese black pine...maybe a few others. I would not expect birch and currant to be in that mix...but who knows??

Did the kit come with the pots? With any other tools, soil, etc? I did a quick search of Amazon.uk for kits that might come with coconut coir pots like in your picture. The only one I found easily was this one:


which doesn't sound like what you have. You might try a quick amazon search to see if you can find your kit...there may be more information there.

If that doesn't work, do you have any seed remaining? A picture of the seed would help narrow down the options considerably! Or, if you could describe the seed/recognize a picture of it, that might help. For example, the 3rd picture may very well be an elm. Was the seed shaped roughly like these:


You can try googling for images of the other species people have suggested to see if the seeds match your memory...that might help. Seed morphology is a primary indicator for many, many species...often better than leaf morphology :)
 

Kanorin

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Often, the first set or two of leaves produced by a new seedling will look different than the mature leaves. I'd definitely start with trying to track down any information that came with the kit (as others have suggested) and then post another picture in a month or whenever each plant has at least 6-8 leaves.
 

HorseloverFat

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Hehe! I got non-viable JW birch seeds in my first kit...

I think the starter sets sold in the UK/Europe would have SLIGHTLY varied (amongst the standards we all know and expect) species “menus”.. I could be totally wrong, and often am. 🤓

Just really curious about that seedling!!

🤣
 

HorseloverFat

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If you go to your avatar in the top right, you can get to a menu option for Account Details. In there, you can add your location and grow zone. Nearest metro is good enough. Then that information will be to the left of every post. It's really helpful to have that information when giving advice and then people won't have to ask all the time :)

Typically consumer level bonsai "kits" are packed with common bonsai varieties...typically things like maples, elms, wisteria, and Japanese black pine...maybe a few others. I would not expect birch and currant to be in that mix...but who knows??

Did the kit come with the pots? With any other tools, soil, etc? I did a quick search of Amazon.uk for kits that might come with coconut coir pots like in your picture. The only one I found easily was this one:


which doesn't sound like what you have. You might try a quick amazon search to see if you can find your kit...there may be more information there.

If that doesn't work, do you have any seed remaining? A picture of the seed would help narrow down the options considerably! Or, if you could describe the seed/recognize a picture of it, that might help. For example, the 3rd picture may very well be an elm. Was the seed shaped roughly like these:


You can try googling for images of the other species people have suggested to see if the seeds match your memory...that might help. Seed morphology is a primary indicator for many, many species...often better than leaf morphology :)
I’ve been thinking about this... (including what @Kanorin said right after) all good tickets to the same avenue of thought, and got me thinking... as well as agreeing.

Were all seeds planted at the same time? Elms germinate quickly... so If it sprouted and grows similarly in “rate” With the other presumed Elms... I’d say it’s SUPER possible it’s ALSO Ulmus..

Hmmmm
 

ALHalliday

Seedling
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Leeds
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Agreed.. Hawthorn and Elm!

Thundering Footsteps overwhelming you from nearby, traveller. Don’t fret, ‘tis simply the dance of The Woody Dwarves.. a common occurrence, here, in the TinyForest. (I got real Rod Serling-y, there)

This places harbors an immensely satisfying spring of shared knowledge/experience... drink when you are thirsty, give when you are full...

Pleasure to make your acquaintance!

(edit: thinking of my “Hawthorn” guess.... and... well.. I am, myself, growing Cratageus from seed.. and most germination doesn’t even happen the first YEAR.. at least for MY endemics... so I COULD be wrong.)
Thank you 😄😄
 

ALHalliday

Seedling
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Leeds
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What kind of kit did you receive? Were the seeds part of the kit? I would hope there would have been some explanation of the seed included if it were included. Even a list of potential options would help immensely!

...and welcome to the forum!
Hey there, I’ll attach a picture of the kit I got but it’s pretty vague:) I might have to get in touch with them
 

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ALHalliday

Seedling
Messages
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Location
Leeds
USDA Zone
7/8
If you go to your avatar in the top right, you can get to a menu option for Account Details. In there, you can add your location and grow zone. Nearest metro is good enough. Then that information will be to the left of every post. It's really helpful to have that information when giving advice and then people won't have to ask all the time :)

Typically consumer level bonsai "kits" are packed with common bonsai varieties...typically things like maples, elms, wisteria, and Japanese black pine...maybe a few others. I would not expect birch and currant to be in that mix...but who knows??

Did the kit come with the pots? With any other tools, soil, etc? I did a quick search of Amazon.uk for kits that might come with coconut coir pots like in your picture. The only one I found easily was this one:


which doesn't sound like what you have. You might try a quick amazon search to see if you can find your kit...there may be more information there.

If that doesn't work, do you have any seed remaining? A picture of the seed would help narrow down the options considerably! Or, if you could describe the seed/recognize a picture of it, that might help. For example, the 3rd picture may very well be an elm. Was the seed shaped roughly like these:


You can try googling for images of the other species people have suggested to see if the seeds match your memory...that might help. Seed morphology is a primary indicator for many, many species...often better than leaf morphology :)
I’ve updated my location thank you and I’ve posted a picture of the kit that I was given, i have no idea what the seeds look like I’m afraid I just put a decent amount in each pot and all three came from the same pot so I had to separate them, I’ve had a little look through the suggestions it’s just so tricky to get it spot on! The kit came with pots and soil discs, thank you for your help:)
 

ALHalliday

Seedling
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Location
Leeds
USDA Zone
7/8
Often, the first set or two of leaves produced by a new seedling will look different than the mature leaves. I'd definitely start with trying to track down any information that came with the kit (as others have suggested) and then post another picture in a month or whenever each plant has at least 6-8 leaves.
Ahh maybe that’s why it’s so difficult to place them, I’ll do that then and post again in about a months time
 

ALHalliday

Seedling
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Leeds
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I’ve been thinking about this... (including what @Kanorin said right after) all good tickets to the same avenue of thought, and got me thinking... as well as agreeing.

Were all seeds planted at the same time? Elms germinate quickly... so If it sprouted and grows similarly in “rate” With the other presumed Elms... I’d say it’s SUPER possible it’s ALSO Ulmus..

Hmmmm
Hey there, all the seeds were planted at the same time yeah they all popped up at different times the bigger two have grown at a similar rate but the little ones taking a little longer so I’ve propped it on an angle so it gets more light
 

Kanorin

Shohin
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I just spent 15 minutes watching the little video that goes with that kit and looking through the product description and the comments on amazon and I still can't find any info about what kinds of seeds they are! In my mind, this is a red flag for a company that wants to pull the wool over your eyes, make it look easy, and take your money. Don't feel discouraged if these seedlings don't survive for long, because the company that sold you the kit did not give you any information on how to effectively care for the mystery tree beyond sprouting it!

I also feel like you should know: To grow a seed into something that looks like a bonsai tree (like the images you see if you google bonsai tree), expect it to take about 15-30 years (especially deciduous trees). Some of those trees from Japan are actually 300+ years old. You could probably make a decent looking forest of 5-10 trees in 7-8 years though because you don't need quite as much trunk thickness.

A lot of us hobbyists start with a ~5 year old tree from our local garden center, which takes a few years off of that clock. Or if you really like the idea of growing trees from seeds, I recommend buying some seeds from a reputable seed company that tells you what seeds are in the packet! :p
 

Kanorin

Shohin
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Also, I just wanted to clarify that I know you got this as a gift. I'm not yelling at you - more angry at the people who manufacture and market these "bonsai kits." I bought a similar kit for myself 3-4 years ago - all of those seedlings died. The kits just do not come with good instructions or materials that you need to keep a tree alive for more than ~6 months.

If you really want to embark on the bonsai adventure I'd encourage you to pick a type of tree that you really like (e.g. maple, pine, elm, flowering) and the members of this forum can help steer you to some cheap, beginner-friendly seeds or 3-5 year old nursery stock (which are much more durable than a young seedling).
 

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