New Hornbeam this spring

evmibo

Shohin
Messages
474
Reaction score
132
Location
Fort Myers, FL
USDA Zone
10a
Hey Matt,

Did you happen to get this off ebay? I saw a similar hornbeam at one point. What are your plans for this tree? I assume that there's a gnarly chop in the top portion.
 
Last edited:

mholt

Mame
Messages
172
Reaction score
1
Location
Silver Lake, WI
USDA Zone
5
Yep, you busted me out. I'm actually very pleased with the chop transition. Either a secondary trunk or a large vertical branch is the new trunk leader with the main trunk chopped in the back. A little more carving on the chop and it'll look great. This is another tree that I will have to take a look at during dormancy but I'll reduce the height a little...nothing much as this tree, in person, has a very study base with a lot still buried. I don't mind if this one ends up 3' tall. It'll be a naturalistic looking tree. At least that's how I envision it at this time.
 

mcpesq817

Omono
Messages
1,809
Reaction score
477
Location
VA
USDA Zone
7
Nice hornbeam. I have a couple that I'm working with that I bought from Don Blackmond of Gregory Beach Bonsai. I know Korean Hornbeams are all the rage, but I have to say that I'm very pleased with how American Hornbeam respond to bonsai techniques, and it's a bit disappointing not to see more of them used.
 

mholt

Mame
Messages
172
Reaction score
1
Location
Silver Lake, WI
USDA Zone
5
Thank you. It does seem that the Korean hornbeam is all the rage but quite honestly, I'd rather work with our native species. I think it's more thrilling to work with native species as well, knowing they're growing in the wild around us and already "know" our environment. I think the American hornbeam tops my list of favorite deciduous trees.
 

evmibo

Shohin
Messages
474
Reaction score
132
Location
Fort Myers, FL
USDA Zone
10a
This is going to be a fun tree to work on. I just purchased my first hornbeam recently (American) with a 1" trunk base. I'm letting it go until next spring but after reading more and more about the species they sound like a great tree to work on. I too prefer a native species, yamadori! ;)
 

tanlu

Shohin
Messages
280
Reaction score
7
Location
Washington, DC
USDA Zone
7a
I'm hear you guys on wanting to utilize what our native species have to offer for bonsai, but for some reason I've had great difficulty finding them, including American Hornbeam. All the trees I have are native to East Asia, simply because that was all I could find. However I did come across some spectacular pitch pine in the near by mountains that I plan to collect when the time is right:)

I have two Korean Hornbeam with about one inch thick trunks, not really worth posting photos of them yet, but they've really grown on me.

Good luck with that tree. I'm also curious to see what's underneath all that foliage.
 

rockm

Imperial Masterpiece
Messages
9,682
Reaction score
12,357
Location
Fairfax Va.
USDA Zone
7
If you're in the NYC area and you're looking in bonsai shops, you will probably not find ANY natives species. You have to look in landscape nurseries if you don't have access to wild land to collect them. American hornbeam (Carpinus caroliniana) is an extremely common species on the east coast (although they grow bigger and better the further south you go). You can occasionally find them at clubs and bonsai fairs that have reputable dealers.

They like growing near streams and bottomlands in constantly moist (not soggy) soil. The bigger ones will be just up the creek bed in areas that stay moist, but drain...
 

tanlu

Shohin
Messages
280
Reaction score
7
Location
Washington, DC
USDA Zone
7a
I usually only look in nurseries because the local bonsai shop is too pricy, and you're right, they certainly don't sell any native species. I'll try looking at nurseries again for American hornbeam, but in the mean time, I'll enjoy my Korean ones:)
 

mholt

Mame
Messages
172
Reaction score
1
Location
Silver Lake, WI
USDA Zone
5
Tanlu, depending on the size you're looking for, nursery hornbeams will come with a very large rootball, straight trunk, and not much for lower branching. Last year I planted (in the landscape) a nursery American hornbeam with a 3.5" trunk and it's rootball was massive (probably 500+ lbs). Looks great in the landscape but if you're looking for one with character in the lower 12 inches of the tree, I would suggest getting a collected one or one field grown as bonsai stock. Last I checked, I notice a couple at bonsai-south.com.
 
Top Bottom