The Six Year Japanese Black Pine Contest!

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Bonsai Nut

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#1
Starting January 1, 2018!

This contest will run 6 years - from January 1, 2018 - December 31, 2023; six full seasons of growth.

You cannot start seeds prior to January 1 (ie no soaking or stratifying) but you can buy your seeds and propagation materials and get them ready. There is no penalty for starting later... many people will not be able to start on January 1 due to winter temps, or they may just choose not to for one reason or the other. The point is to give everyone 6 growing seasons.

Rules of the Contest
(1) You have to announce that you are participating. No showing up in year 6 and saying "surprise, here's my winning tree" :)
(2) You need to share all of your information - including where you sourced your seeds, and all the steps you used to get them to germinate, as well as post germination care.
(3) At the minimum you need to post one photo per year (on or about the end of December) showing general progress. Since I assume people will be growing more than one tree, it is ok if early photos show numerous trees in early development (i.e. flats full of seedlings). However by the end of year four I'm assuming people will have a good sense of which trees are progressing most rapidly, and you should share some photos of those trees. Don't show up at the end of year 6 with a "winning" tree that we have never seen before :)
(4) On December 31, 2023, you can only enter ONE TREE as your finalist, even if you have more than one that has shown good development.

Judging Criteria
Trees will be judged on quality and trunk caliper at the highest surface roots. The fattest tree will not necessarily win, but the contest focus is on getting maximum growth and development out of JBP in 6 years, so no skinny literati trees (for example).

Awards
Assuming we have numerous participants and finishers, I hope to have a guest judge, as well as awards for all finishers (at least one tree alive end of year 6) and perhaps special awards for the top three trees. I will have 6 years to plan :) However, I want to make sure that people understand the focus of this contest is FUN and LEARNING. Assume there will be no physical award and only bragging rights... and then you might be surprised.

Special Considerations
If we have friends in the Southern Hemisphere who wish to participate, we can run a second wave from July 1, 2018 - June 30, 2024. I will create a second contest thread if there is interest.

[EDIT] PLEASE REFER TO THE OFFICIAL CONTEST RULES THREAD FOR FINAL RULES AND DISCUSSION [/EDIT]
 
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Dav4

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#4
I've got some JBPs from Schumaker's that I purchased a year or two ago. I should still be able to get a descent germination rate so I'm good to go as long as I can find the mailing envelope with the seeds:rolleyes:.
 

Bonsai Nut

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Yeah I'm going to be curious about some of the seeds I ordered from international vendors...

I ordered 500 from my normal source just to be safe. One of the vendors in Indonesia may not make it here by January 1 :) I have no idea what sort of shipping you are using if it takes two months from Indonesia to the West Coast. Rickshaw? I think a container ship makes the crossing in 23 days :)
 

Anthony

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#6
, ordered 50 seeds off of Amazon Today - Hirts and a new seller.
Just for fun.
As long as local authorities allow them in, will take part in the exercise.
Good Day
Anthony
 

Bonsai Nut

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By the way... my 1000 seeds set me back about $60.

I fully expect after floating, germination, and initial root pruning I'll be excited if I have 500. After the first year I'll keep the 100 strongest. Last time I grew out a lot of JBP my biggest issue was critters - birds and squirrels apparently love 'em.
 

defra

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By the way... my 1000 seeds set me back about $60.

I fully expect after floating, germination, and initial root pruning I'll be excited if I have 500. After the first year I'll keep the 100 strongest. Last time I grew out a lot of JBP my biggest issue was critters - birds and squirrels apparently love 'em.
lol i dont have allot of space
i will be happy with 10 seedlings and pick the two or three best to grow out haha
 

Dav4

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#11
@Dav4 mentioned these guys... how do we feel about thier seeds?

Looks like 1 oz is about $15 (I think that's about 1500 seeds).

https://www.treeshrubseeds.com/catalog
I've ordered JBP, JRP, and Trident maple seeds from them and have been pleased with the germination rates and quality of the stock, at least as much as it can be evaluated after only one growing season... some of the tridents I started last winter are 3 feet tall with relatively short internodes, smaller deep green leaves, and others have a trunk almost 1/2" thick at the soil line. The needles on the JBPs I started this year are dark green, straight, and fairly short, maybe only 2-3" long.
 

CasAH

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#12
My niece in Japan will be coming home in December for her sister’s wedding.

Does anyone know if you are allowed to bring in JBP seeds in luggage?

I my see if she, other boyfriend, can pick up some seed for me if they can bring them in with no issues.

I looked at the APHIS and it says JBP seeds do not need permits, if I am reading their tables correctly, but I do not want to get her in trouble.

I think she will be reapplying for a work visa when she is in the USA. Her friends say the pretty girls only get one year visas, so they have to go back to the consulate every year. The guys and older ladies get three year renewals.

My niece is 5’9” blue eyed blonde. That has had more than her share of stalkers in Tokyo.
 

Bonsai Nut

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Bonsai Nut

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#15
Right...$8 for the 1oz and $7 for shipping...why so many vendors, if I may ask?
Because this contest is to try to learn something... I was curious if any of these sources had "better" seeds than others. You can't really learn much unless your n=100 or greater, so I thought I would order 100 seeds from a bunch of different sources and see if, when treated exactly the same way at the same time, one vendor had "better" seeds.
 
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#16
After reading the Bonsai Tonight thingy I was wondering if ya can buy actual cones? And when would they be green anysways? Just trying to make the Pregame longer than the Super Bowl's.
 

Bonsai Nut

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After reading the Bonsai Tonight thingy I was wondering if ya can buy actual cones? And when would they be green anysways? Just trying to make the Pregame longer than the Super Bowl's.
I have no idea... I assume you would have to start your search where there are adult JBP in landscape, etc.
 
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#18
Never having done something like this before, and knowing my temps in January will be quite cold still....is it reasonable to start the seeds indoors in January with a couple cheap grow lights or similar?
 
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#19
Great idea to get people off their lazy butts and expand their bonsai comfort zone. I think a Shimp cuttings contest would also be a good thing to get people moving in the right direction but lets start with your JBP contest. I have never grown any bonsai prospect from seed so this will be a challenge but I will be in.
 
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