Plants for Dry and Hot Climates

milehigh_7

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Ok everyone, the Vitex talk really got me looking around and thinking about what might have possibilities. So walking around my office I have noticed several interesting things.

Please post plants that you know do well for bonsai in hot and dry areas. If you have successfully trained it even better!

Here is one called Baccharis 'Centennial'

The leaves are about .5 inches long and about .25 (or less) wide. It is kind of an ugly plant if allowed to just grow but look at the trunk they do this naturally:
 

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PaulH

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Baccharis is a common native that grows where I live and I've got my eye on a couple to try to dig next spring. More to follow.
Paul
 

bonhe

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Its trunk has an interesting look.

Let see what kinds of trees growing well in my yard:

California juniper and other types of junipers
Arizona cypress
JBP
Bougainvillea
Pomegranate
Olive
Ficus
Grape
Tamarix
Elm
Crabapples
Pistacia chinensis
Japanese apricot (but it needs protection in the summer)

In my opinion, lot of trees can be grown in hot, dry area, but you must choose the right place to put them (microclimate is very important here). Bonhe
 

Asus101

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Where I live, I get about a month and a half of high 45 to 53 degrees celsius straight. If we are lucky a cooler say or two of 40 to 44.

Here I have zelkova, wisteria, english elm, chinese elm, olive, ficus, aleppo pine, crepe myrtle, juniper, jade, Cherry (fruiting), Swamp cypress, English Yew, silver birch and a japanese maple but it burns its leaves even in the coolest parts of the yard.
I mist up to 6 times a day and dont have any in sun. They are all in medium to heavy shade and placed over the lawn as it keeps the lawn going and raises humidity.

When have an extreme dry h eat with usually less than %5 water in the air, JBP will actually boil in its own sap.
I found keeping the mositure up they will come through ok. This summer I only lost 4 or so, where the previous one I lost over 30.
 

greerhw

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Junipers and crepe myrtles can take it. Just give em a little afternoon shade.

Harry
 

milehigh_7

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Actually Harry is right about the Crapes they do very very well in the heat. Remember we are about as hot as you Aus (never anywhere near 53C! Wow that is hot!). We have already had a week and a half over 37c and less than 5% humidity. We spend much of our summer 43-46C or more sometimes. Again with less than 5% humidity and often 48km/hr+ wind. I he seems to be right about the afternoon shade as well. That seems to make all the difference for me so far.
 
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Smoke

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Good luck on the baccharis, they do terribly in containers. I wish you luck.

Sam Kinnison used to scream, making fun of the Etheopians... "hey if your family is starving to death...Move closer to the food!" Maybe bonsai would be better grown with a move to a better climate.

just al
 

milehigh_7

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Good luck on the baccharis, they do terribly in containers. I wish you luck.

Sam Kinnison used to scream, making fun of the Etheopians... "hey if your family is starving to death...Move closer to the food!" Maybe bonsai would be better grown with a move to a better climate.

just al
Well, this is the kind of info I need! I trust your judgement a great deal Al. I was just noticing the trunks on them outside my office. Yes, about moving closer to the food, my kids like it here so we stay. Plus I have a really good job and right now, that is kinda rare. So I am learning to make lemonade out of lemons.
 

PaulH

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Good luck on the baccharis, they do terribly in containers. I wish you luck.

Sam Kinnison used to scream, making fun of the Etheopians... "hey if your family is starving to death...Move closer to the food!" Maybe bonsai would be better grown with a move to a better climate.

just al
Thanks Al,

I appreciate the info. It may not be worth the trouble to try to dig Baccharis. Certainly many natives That look great for bonsai don't tolerate transplanting. e.g. manzanita and chamise. I just have an interest in seeing more done with California natives as bonsai and have never seen anyone work with Baccharus. Probably a good reason for that. But then again, when I started in bonsai hardly anyone worked with native oaks and I find them to be one of the most rewarding species groups.
Paul
 

Yamadori

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Be sure to place your trees on humidity trays. You can use a thrift store cookie sheet until you find something more attractive and Japanese looking. You can even get a thrift store silver platters, they are cheap. Fill the trays with aquarium gravel. Place your trees on top but not snuggled into the gravel. You want them to be able to drain. When you water be sure to top the tray. As long as there is moisture in the tray there will be some humidity for your trees. This has saved some of my trees when it gets into 108-110 in July and August. Now with dessicating winds I would consider adding a solid wall or some barrier, and misters to my shade area. You can buy a thermostat to turn the system on when needed. http://www.littlegreenhouse.com/accessory/controls.shtml
 

greerhw

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If you have access to your trees during the day (I'm retired). I cut up old t-shirts and pin them around the pots on my shohin and chuhin trees, old towels on the larger ones and keep them damp in the summer, this keeps the roots cool and provides humidity. For working people, the tray sounds like a good idea.

Ciao,
Harry
 

bonhe

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Now with dessicating winds I would consider adding a solid wall or some barrier, and misters to my shade area. QUOTE]

Instead of adding a solid wall which can affect to the aesthetics of landscape design, I'm using landscape bushes and trees, and it works very well.
Bonhe
 

greerhw

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Good luck on the baccharis, they do terribly in containers. I wish you luck.

Sam Kinnison used to scream, making fun of the Etheopians... "hey if your family is starving to death...Move closer to the food!" Maybe bonsai would be better grown with a move to a better climate.

just al

Looks like you're not too far from McDonalds................:rolleyes:

Harry
 
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