Recently collected Japanese boxwood after-care.

M_dawg

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Hi all, am I very new to bonsai so forgive any mistakes I might have made. I recently collected about 8 of what I think are Japanese boxwood. And was wondering if anyone could give me any tips on how to make sure they stay alive and well established. Here is a bit of context.

I collected them immediately after a short frost period, I did not manage to get much root but I did as best as I could given the circumstances. I would have likes to wait longer before collecting but unfortunately the owner wanted them gone.

They came out of a very dense clay so I washed out the roots and put them into some fresh soil, I read that the branches will most likely die unless they have leaves on them however bit wasn’t possible to keep the leaves on the majority of the branches so I thought best to take them all off instead of leaving only few and seeing the major branches die back.

it has rained non stop since I potted them and I am expecting a nother couple of weeks of rain to follow so am bring them indoors hoping the slight temp change might in courage root growth/back budding. They are now on a south facing window sill.

this is my first experience collecting trees so would very much appreciate some help/advice or any corrections to the mistakes I might have already made.

thank you.
 

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sorce

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I did this a long time ago. The plastic pots are too wet. They'll make it, but you may want to put them in different same size pots in the summer.

Welcome to Crazy!

Sorce
 

Forsoothe!

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I hate to say it, but you did everything wrong. You can be forgiven, but your batting average starts with hitting into a triple play. You need to go to your logo in the upper right hand corner, click, enter your location so you can get advice customized to your climate. This is a world-wide forum.

When forced to collect in a bad season, do as little to the plants as possible, like dig up and heel in elsewhere. Removing foliage out of season when the plant is unprepared to replace it is not good, and double bad for plants that keep their foliage for more than one growing season, like box. Clay is not good for us root disturbers, but does keep the roots compact and protected. Hardy plants need winter as a rest period as much as we need rest at night. Rousting them from bed may have been unwelcome, but you should have let them sleep, -like carrying a kid up to bed, you don't wake them up and march them to the kitchen. Take the plants outside and mulch them in for the season until you see growth in spring. Now, go sit on the bench and watch the rest of the game.
 

M_dawg

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I hate to say it, but you did everything wrong. You can be forgiven, but your batting average starts with hitting into a triple play. You need to go to your logo in the upper right hand corner, click, enter your location so you can get advice customized to your climate. This is a world-wide forum.

When forced to collect in a bad season, do as little to the plants as possible, like dig up and heel in elsewhere. Removing foliage out of season when the plant is unprepared to replace it is not good, and double bad for plants that keep their foliage for more than one growing season, like box. Clay is not good for us root disturbers, but does keep the roots compact and protected. Hardy plants need winter as a rest period as much as we need rest at night. Rousting them from bed may have been unwelcome, but you should have let them sleep, -like carrying a kid up to bed, you don't wake them up and march them to the kitchen. Take the plants outside and mulch them in for the season until you see growth in spring. Now, go sit on the bench and watch the rest of the game.
Ah I see, my logic is that by the end of winter, (a couple months time) the plant will be weaker then it is now and hence less able to push shoots, especially after a nother few months of dreary grey English weather. (Very wet)

it has had half a winters dormancy so far.

with all that in mind do u still recommend I put them back outside? And should I fertilise?
 

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Temperate species are quite capable of surviving all winter after collection. They just sit dormant and slowly start healing the cuts rather than getting weaker over winter. When spring comes they are ready to go. I think these would be far better off outside for the rest of your winter.

The rest of the collection process sounds fine. I know there are some who like to do it different and many of them get upset when anyone challenges their belief but I find the majority of my collections do fine with the garden soil removed and roots straight into good potting soil. Clay is great in the garden but has evil intent when it is in pots. Far easier to manage watering, etc without it and as mentioned, most trees do just fine.
 

M_dawg

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Temperate species are quite capable of surviving all winter after collection. They just sit dormant and slowly start healing the cuts rather than getting weaker over winter. When spring comes they are ready to go. I think these would be far better off outside for the rest of your winter.

The rest of the collection process sounds fine. I know there are some who like to do it different and many of them get upset when anyone challenges their belief but I find the majority of my collections do fine with the garden soil removed and roots straight into good potting soil. Clay is great in the garden but has evil intent when it is in pots. Far easier to manage watering, etc without it and as mentioned, most trees do just fine.
i have put them back outside in the sun on my terrace, anything else i can do or is it just a waiting game from now until spring to see if they make it?
 

BonjourBonsai

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I would protect them from drying winds, sharp temperature swings, (especially hard freezes) and too much sun. Let them sleep until spring wakes them up. Boxwood are very tough though.
 

Shibui

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i have put them back outside in the sun on my terrace, anything else i can do or is it just a waiting game from now until spring to see if they make it?
Check regularly to make sure the soil does not dry out and wait for the new buds to appear.
You are not likely to experience hard freezes in Brighton. There are few, if any leaves so it will not dehydrate much. Provided there is reasonable moisture in the soil it should be able to get enough to replace the little it loses through the cuts and the bark.
It is really just a waiting game now.
 

Forsoothe!

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Set them on the ground which modifies the temperature of the roots which should be kept cool without wide temp swings. Cover the pots with leaves as mulch. That conserves moisture at the same time that the leaves will let some rain through without allowing the pots to be lakes. That's it, nothing more. As the weather gets more spring-like and you see buds expanding you can repot into proper pots & media. Do not reduce the roots to bonsai size this time. Your main task is to save their lives, just pot them up properly and wait for two years best, but at least one year to recover.
 

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