Ok, this time I didn’t cut anything.

scottc

Yamadori
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#1
This pine was looking for a new home so I got it. Have the full root system. I watched the video on wiring trees that was recommended but only added two pieces of wire to turn a branch to opposite side for what I see as balance. I’ll just be letting this tree get used to it’s new home. Any advice is appreciated. I don’t know what kind it is. From Utah mountainside at about 6k feet. I sure like the cliff side plants here with tiny root structures. The little mossy looking ball of something was just a bonus on the cliff side. No idea what it is. And yeah I know it’s not a Bonsai but a tree I can learn on. That why I didn’t cut like my last disaster. 4A19DE9D-D3AA-47C5-9FB2-1D6E7BB292CA.jpeg 35631C0E-C29C-48B7-A617-25FABFC15BA4.jpeg E6577A01-F41A-4BCA-B3BD-C865E1B7FBA2.jpeg 1D901D9A-61D1-4ED1-A5A8-3EC17505898B.jpeg
 
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#3
If it was just collected (did you collect it?), let it recover for a few years before doing any work to it.

Can't help with the exact species, sorry!
 

scottc

Yamadori
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#4
If it was just collected (did you collect it?), let it recover for a few years before doing any work to it.

Can't help with the exact species, sorry!
Yeah it’s just going to chill and get used to it’s new digs...
 

scottc

Yamadori
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#6
Slowly chop it to the bottom branch and make a raft style a friend suggested. That would be a fun project. Over years of time. Don’t worry I won’t start cutting.
 
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#8
This pine was looking for a new home
It told you this??

Your "pine" is a Douglas fir. If you look closely at the needles they come off the branch singularly rather than in a fascicle containing a pair of needles or more. It's not a subalpine fir, the needles aren't dense enough.

Ive got a couple questions for you at this point. Are you living in Utah? You've done some collecting here but I thought I read in another post you lived in Seattle. Did you get a permit to collect these trees you've gotten? If you're on a mountainside at 6000 ft you could be in national forest land and should get permission to collect them.
 

scottc

Yamadori
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#9
92702A76-1D73-40F0-8657-E781974D3A68.jpeg
It told you this??

Your "pine" is a Douglas fir. If you look closely at the needles they come off the branch singularly rather than in a fascicle containing a pair of needles or more. It's not a subalpine fir, the needles aren't dense enough.

Ive got a couple questions for you at this point. Are you living in Utah? You've done some collecting here but I thought I read in another post you lived in Seattle. Did you get a permit to collect these trees you've gotten? If you're on a mountainside at 6000 ft you could be in national forest land and should get permission to collect them.
We collect em from construction areas that we work in. Thanks for the Douglas Fir ID. I’m gunna read up on em. They are all over up here. I turn Douglas fir into Barns for work. National forest trees I would imagine come with a hefty fine if you started digging em up.
 

Adair M

Imperial Masterpiece
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#10
Ok, so you watched the Craftsy wiring video.

Did you go back to the Mugo and remove that wire and start over?

You should.

Then take a photo of the fresh wire tree. Can you see improvement?

Post it here, and I’ll check it for you.

That would be a better exercise for you to improve rather than digging up more trees at this point in your learning.
 

scottc

Yamadori
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#11
Ok, so you watched the Craftsy wiring video.

Did you go back to the Mugo and remove that wire and start over?

You should.

Then take a photo of the fresh wire tree. Can you see improvement?

Post it here, and I’ll check it for you.

That would be a better exercise for you to improve rather than digging up more trees at this point in your learning.
Yeah that was a good video. I’ll work on that Mugo this weekend. I did some reading on this fir. Seems people have problems with back budding but I looked it over and new stuff is popping out all over. Looks like a deer had a good chew on it in a lot of spots and those branches have tons of new buds. So on the Mugo should I just rewire with the handle bar / mustache branches? Won’t change the look but yeah I need the practice and that’s what it’s for.
 
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#13
1. Is not normal time to collect. Roots subject to shock from damage and cold not able to grow/recover.
2. If wanting to develop trunk need to pot in large container or ground.

Patience. Patience. Patience! Uncontrolled need to hurry endlessly aggravating to any more experienced growers caring about life of trees.
 

Adair M

Imperial Masterpiece
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#14
Yeah that was a good video. I’ll work on that Mugo this weekend. I did some reading on this fir. Seems people have problems with back budding but I looked it over and new stuff is popping out all over. Looks like a deer had a good chew on it in a lot of spots and those branches have tons of new buds. So on the Mugo should I just rewire with the handle bar / mustache branches? Won’t change the look but yeah I need the practice and that’s what it’s for.
Take it all off!

Start afresh.
 

Nybonsai12

Masterpiece
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#15
You should be asking questions BEFORE you do things do get proper instruction. You didn’t know what this tree was, you dug it out of season and then jammed it in a tiny pot. You are setting yourself up for failure.
 

scottc

Yamadori
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#16
You should be asking questions BEFORE you do things do get proper instruction. You didn’t know what this tree was, you dug it out of season and then jammed it in a tiny pot. You are setting yourself up for failure.
Dug out by a Trackhoe to make a new road or dug out by me and stick in a pot? It’s more like move 1 piece of shale and put in a pot. I guess we will see if it makes it.
 
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#17
I have found doug firs backbud like crazy. It seems like maybe you should consider a colander or pond basket
or putting it in the ground while it regroups. Just because the roots fit in that shallow small pot doesnt mean it will thrive there.
 
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#18
Dug out by a Trackhoe to make a new road or dug out by me and stick in a pot? It’s more like move 1 piece of shale and put in a pot. I guess we will see if it makes it.
Given you are collecting from construction sites, now is better than never. You did not answer the question about where you are growing these, whether it is Seattle or in Utah, at lower elevation. After collection from 6000 feet in Utah in January, these will need to be protected from hard freezing for the remainder of the winter. Easy to do in Seattle, much more difficult in Utah.

I found I need at least 25 t0 to 50 trees in the yard so that I can work on one, then leave it alone to recover, with 50 trees there is always a different tree that needs attention, thus making the patience part of bonsai easier to bear.

Collecting out of season is often possible, if your aftercare is better than average. So think about their after care.

first task after collection is ROOTS, you need to let the tree grow a new root system. Within reason, the more foliage a tree has, the quicker it will create a new root system. Do not prune off foliage if at all possible. Of course remove damaged and diseased branches, but keep initial pruning at a minimum. Pot the trees into a pumice based bonsai mix. Many collectors use 100% pumice. One possible substitute for pumice is Perlite or Sponge rock. Both are the same material, just different coarseness of particle and different distributor. Both are fired to expand feldspar or similar mined mineral. Pumice is preferable. Pumice and composted bark is one good enough mix. Like I mentioned, pumice alone is quite good for establishing new root systems on newly collected material. Conifers do well with 100% pumice. Deciduous trees do well with at least some composted fir bark in addition to the pumice. Maybe 20% to 30% bark.

Use large containers, collanders or purpose built grow out boxes. Bonsai pots are too small. You need to build a root system and a larger than the final tree size root system. In order to have branches to choose from, you need the possibility of growth. For growth you need a root system. I know I'm repeating myself, but catch the theme? Roots. Collected material can require more than one summer to grow a new root system. The tree is not ready for any work until you have vigorous bushy growth. One or two buds is not enough, even many buds, while a good sign, does not mean the tree is ready. You need vigorous growth, then the following season work can begin in earnest. With good vigor, the tree will recover from dramatic work. If you start working the tree too soon, you can send it into decline, which if you don't recognize the symptoms, decline can lead to death of the tree. I have a Ponderosa pine, and it has taken 3 years, and finally this 3rd summer it had a good flush of growth, so I put the very first piece of wire on it. I still have not pruned it at all. But it needed time to settle in. I have a colorado blue spruce, nursery material that was horribly pot bound. I removed 75% of its root system to get it into an Anderson flat, a 16 x 16 x 5 inch tray with a mesh bottom. It has been 3 summers since repotting, and as of yet to get sufficient growth to be comfortable to start on it. So I let it recover. Since it is only 2 feet tall but has a nice large diameter trunk, I can wait. Work will not begin until the season after every branch has ''blue shiners'' fesh young growth. It could take another year or two. Six years to recover is long, but not unheard of. I was brutal with the roots. SO, back to the theme, roots first, don't rush until you have good roots.

The above more or less applies to all species.

Douglas fir is what I also believe you have collected. They have only recently become popular for bonsai, you won't find a lot written about them as bonsai. They are a good species. They have their own schedule for when it is ideal to do various tasks. I don't have any, so you will have to find the information yourself.

Each species of tree has its own habits, and growth pattern. This pattern determines the schedule for when it is optimal to apply different bonsai techniques. For this reason you need to become more skilled at identifying trees in the wild. You need to know the identity, at least to genus, the various trees you collect. This way you can optimize your care, and get better results with a lower mortality rate. Low mortality rates are good.

So collect when the opportunity presents itself, and improve your after care to give the trees a fighting chance of survival.
 

scottc

Yamadori
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#19
Thanks for all the info. And yeah I’m just letting it chill. It came out with all the roots it had. I look for ones on the steep shale. They have small root systems that come with the tree. Just a few hammer taps and the rocks crumble away. I took the container I put it in and buried it in the ground in morning/mid day sun spot. I won’t touch it other than water and light fertilizer in spring. This has been such a light Winter. It’s 50 in the day. I am in Utah. Salt Lake City. My collected Mountain mahogany is growing like crazy and that I’m just letting chill for a long time also. Thanks for you in depth reply. Let em grow roots and don’t mess with em.....
 

AlainK

Masterpiece
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#20
This pine was looking for a new home so I got it.
Hi,

I may be wrong, but it looks like a Juniper to me.

Whatever, I wouldn't make it lean so much, I'd plant it straight until it settles and is heallthy.

But definitely not a pine, probably some kind of Juniper.