Show us your Oak (Quercus) Pre-Bonsai

BonsaiNaga13

Shohin
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Got a pin oak seedling a few months old I collected from my yard mid spring or early summerish, pruned the tap root an put it in some bonsai soil, it didn't seem to stunt the growing any. Think I'm gonna up pot it next year and leave it for a while but eventually I'm gonna probably put it in the ground on a tile to grow out
 

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rockm

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You aim with this tree is NOT to "stunt" it's growth. Cutting the tap root won't do that anyway. Cutting the tap is meant to force new roots to grow laterally in a flatter root mass and to get the tree into a shallower container.

At this point, With a seedling like this, you want to maximize growth to increase trunk size/character--which is the point of an oak bonsai. Without a substantial trunk, oak bonsai might as well be a ficus. Containerizing it slows that process. It can happen, just takes a lot longer.
 

BonsaiNaga13

Shohin
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You aim with this tree is NOT to "stunt" it's growth. Cutting the tap root won't do that anyway. Cutting the tap is meant to force new roots to grow laterally in a flatter root mass and to get the tree into a shallower container.

At this point, With a seedling like this, you want to maximize growth to increase trunk size/character--which is the point of an oak bonsai. Without a substantial trunk, oak bonsai might as well be a ficus. Containerizing it slows that process. It can happen, just takes a lot longer.
I know, I want to get a good controlled radial root spread before I put it in the ground. I wasn't attempting to stunt its growth, just stating usually some plants will focus more energy on healing the wound and grow slow until the next year if they even survive root pruning, but this is the biggest several month old oak seedling I've seen. I'm going for a fairly large oak cuz idk how well the leaves reduce but I'm young so I got time.
 

mcpesq817

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Oaks grow incredibly slowly in containers. I've tried valley, cork bark, english, and willow, and they don't thicken very much at all. Ground is certainly your best bet. I put a few english oaks in the ground, and plan to dig them up every 3-5 years to make sure that the roots don't get away from me (either that, or spade a section every year or two).
 

rockm

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I know, I want to get a good controlled radial root spread before I put it in the ground. I wasn't attempting to stunt its growth, just stating usually some plants will focus more energy on healing the wound and grow slow until the next year if they even survive root pruning, but this is the biggest several month old oak seedling I've seen. I'm going for a fairly large oak cuz idk how well the leaves reduce but I'm young so I got time.
If you're after a fairly large oak, you're going to be (no joke) middle aged by the time this tree reaches an consequential size for bonsai work from a container. Collected larger trees are pretty much essential for beginning an oak bonsai regardless of age. Both of the trees below are over 200 years old. I've been working the live oak at top for 25 years. The grey oak for less than three...
livoak.jpggreoak2.jpg
 

Johnathan

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Well I got a good deal on a couple of those 72 cell "greenhouse seed starters" I suppose I will try and get more oaks from seeds this upcoming spring. I know @Anthony would be proud lol

As @rockm suggested Quercus fusiformis is on my list for sure, any other fast growing oaks suitable for bonsai you guys recommend?
 

Johnathan

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Sorry to keep on bringing up this thread, but I love Oaks lol

water oak.jpg

I came across some of these Water Oak Seedlings, and I may get a few of them since they still appear small and flexible, that would allow me to buy other acorns/ seeds. I've been researching about Water Oaks and I know that people here have them and @rockm suggest them for my zone. My question is, after reading a thread from @Zach Smith back in the day, do water oaks actually make good bonsai? I know there was concerns about ramification.
 

Zach Smith

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Sorry to keep on bringing up this thread, but I love Oaks lol

View attachment 213721

I came across some of these Water Oak Seedlings, and I may get a few of them since they still appear small and flexible, that would allow me to buy other acorns/ seeds. I've been researching about Water Oaks and I know that people here have them and @rockm suggest them for my zone. My question is, after reading a thread from @Zach Smith back in the day, do water oaks actually make good bonsai? I know there was concerns about ramification.
Water oaks make great bonsai. VAFisher has a very nice specimen he got from me. Not sure if he posted elsewhere on this thread.
 

Johnathan

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Water oaks make great bonsai. VAFisher has a very nice specimen he got from me. Not sure if he posted elsewhere on this thread.
Okay got it! I'm going to get them. I just thought there was a dislike about how they receive ramification tactics.
 

Djtommy

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Got some grown from seed, now about 2 years old, this may take some time..
4C63419D-6400-45D8-AC4C-58F7CA1353CF.jpeg
 

K5ATG

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Well I got a good deal on a couple of those 72 cell "greenhouse seed starters" I suppose I will try and get more oaks from seeds this upcoming spring. I know @Anthony would be proud lol

As @rockm suggested Quercus fusiformis is on my list for sure, any other fast growing oaks suitable for bonsai you guys recommend?
I have a bunch of seeds for Blackjack Oak Quercus marilandica trying out. Let me know if you want some.
 

Potawatomi13

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I have a bunch of seeds for Blackjack Oak Quercus marilandica trying out. Let me know if you want some.
Love marilandica. Would like to get a few if surely pure marilandica. Possible to say:confused:?
 

rockm

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I have a bunch of seeds for Blackjack Oak Quercus marilandica trying out. Let me know if you want some.
These are fantastic in the wild, but as bonsai, the leaves are huge . Don't know if they'll reduce reliably under bonsai culture. Haven't tried one though.
 

K5ATG

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These are fantastic in the wild, but as bonsai, the leaves are huge . Don't know if they'll reduce reliably under bonsai culture. Haven't tried one though.
I'm not very experienced or wise with bonsai. I do not have the financial resources to buy nice trees, so I get all of the seeds that I can find and if they produce trees, then I will sort out if they make bonsai or not. I have about 50 trees and I actually bought 3 of them and those were on death row at Lowes. None of my trees could be classified as mediocre bonsai but you got to start somewhere
 

Dan92119

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Here are my two Cork Oaks, Quercus Suber. I bought them about this time last year. They were in one gallon pots, $7.00 each. I slip potted them into two gallon pots. In the late spring I re-potted in what they are in now(they are in 8822 and pumice). I was sure they were going to die. I already had at least 2 inches of new growth on them. I didn't expect the roots to be so woody, they kept breaking, what was left was about as big as a fist. I kept them watered, and they started to grow!! About 2/3rd of what you see is new growth(4 -5 months worth). I am not sure what to do with the one in the black pot. The one in the box I was thinking of a literati. Any thoughts and suggestions will be appreciated.
 
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