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rosieface

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Hey guys, I am a super beginner. You will scoff at me because I got turned on to bonsai when I bought one of those silly $6 "Grow from Seed" kits at a novelty shop, but now I have a very healthy one month old jack pine seedling that is just beginning to send out its second needles, and a pretty little two (?) year old juniper that I got from a bonsai dealer online (bonsaiboy.com) for practicing with. The juniper was practically jumping out of its nursery pot when I got it so I had to repot it immediately and I am waiting for it to get a bit more settled before I start messing with it any more. I will post pictures of both little baby trees soon; maybe tomorrow.

My question for now is, since I obviously need to get another tree RIGHT AWAY to have more experience with different species and more fun ways to get my hands dirty and mess around, how do I convince my spouse to let me spend more money on a thing that I don't seeeeem to be giving more than five minutes of attention to per day? :rolleyes: :D

PS-- I have been researching like crazy and this forum has been an unbelievable help to me! You guys are awesome!
 

tnaz71

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Just tell her that it relaxes you. It will work for a few then you will need to find another excuse ;)
 

Mike423

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Just explain to her that you really enjoy it and that it brings you peace ad happiness as well as a sense of accomplishment through maintaining a living piece of art. If she gives you trouble just remind her that there could be much more intrusive and expensive hobbies that you could have gotten into:D If you haven't thought of it already your local library should have a plethora of Bonsai books to use as learning material.
 
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rosieface

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Um.... guys. I am married to a MAN. I am a WOMAN. (Thanks for your sincere help, but I can't even read past the "Tell your wife....")

Of course, now you reveal the you were doing it on purpose to bug me.
 

mcpesq817

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Ask her if she would prefer you spending your money on fast cars, booze, nights out chasing women, all day golfing events, etc. Also remind her of all the things she spends money on. :rolleyes:

*EDIT* Looks like I posted at the same time you did. For whatever reason, a bunch of us assumed you were a guy since guys are usually the ones asking those kinds of questions. In any event, maybe you can still use the list I gave above (except for maybe the chasing women part), but I'm sure you can remind him of what he spends money on.
 
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This is getting embarrasing! Can't anyone read? She needs an excuse to give to her husband. That she is not out chasing women probably won't cut it! Some of the other suggestions are less gender-specific: It brings you calm and peace, so you can put up with his eccentricities with equanimity...

edit: Sorry! The correction by the last poster just appeared as I posted the above. My apologies!
 
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007

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This is rather hilarious to be honest . . . I don't know what it was (perhaps the smiley's and the "seeeeeems" that tipped me off) but I knew this was a "convince my husband" post.

At any rate, my wife does not understand what-so-ever, my fascination with miniature tree's in a pot, or as she likes to caution when I buy anything "you paid HOW MUCH for a stick in a pot?! :mad:"

What I don't get is her "purse hobby" (which trust me, is JUST as expensive as my tree's) . . . given that our interests are both big ticket purchases, we have generated an annual budget. We each have the exact same to spend on our hobby per year - NO QUESTIONS ASKED. And it works out just fine.

Welcome to the forums!
 

jk_lewis

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My question for now is, since I obviously need to get another tree RIGHT AWAY to have more experience with different species and more fun ways to get my hands dirty and mess around, how do I convince my spouse to let me spend more money on a thing that I don't seeeeem to be giving more than five minutes of attention to per day?
Actually, you don't. While it is OK to get a new tree if you want one, you really need to learn about bonsai. Get some books (library or book store) and READ.
 

rosieface

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Forgiveness for all!

@Jkl, I have been reading. I actually work part-time at a public library and have checked out--well, not EVERYTHING our library system has on bonsai, but quite a bit of it. There are books filled with tree pictures all over our house, and I'm constantly searching the web for more info.

Speaking of pictures:

The first tree is the freshly repotted juniper; it's been in that pot about two weeks or so.

The seedling is a jack pine; sorry about the sideways-ness, there's only so much I can figure out about technology in one day. Anyway, I included the close up so that you can see it's shooting out some new needles. I like having the seedling, because even though I can't so anything with it yet I can see it change from day to day and it's very exciting!
 

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jk_lewis

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I wish, when I was a lad lo those too danged many ages ago now, I had considered "Library Science" (I think hat's what they call it these days) as a career.

Hard to tell much from the small pictures. It does appear, howver, that you may have too much "loam" or other organic material in the soil. Be careful with your watering. Let the trees get dry before watering -- especially the seedling!

Just for future reference . . . conifers do NOT belong in blue pots! :)
 

rosieface

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Neither one of these little guys is going to spend a real long time in the pots they're currently in. The seedling is definitely in soil that needs to be more granular, but I don't want to move it until it has a strong enough root system to hold together. Still, it's growing really fast so it should be all right in another month or two.

In the meantime, I'll study up on pots! :p
 

greerhw

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Him. (I'm a lady-type.) :eek:
Some of our members don't pay attention, sorry. You are lucky, you are in a great bonsai area, several great nursuries. Forget the books for now and join a bonsai club, I could be wrong, but I believe there are a lot of clubs in LA. You will learn more from one demo by someone that knows what they are doing than reading ten books. This advice will save you money, time and heartache. Bonsai is a great hobby, welcome.

Harry
 
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treebeard55

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... You will scoff at me because I got turned on to bonsai when I bought one of those silly $6 "Grow from Seed" kits at a novelty shop...
Welcome to bonsai, and to the forum. We nuts have fun, but we do help each other out a lot, too. As for scoffing: I got interested in bonsai when my younger sister sent me a "bonsai kit" for Christmas, lo, these many moons ago. (She should have known better than to send such a thing to a confirmed green thumb. ;) )

... how do I convince my spouse to let me spend more money on a thing that I don't seeeeem to be giving more than five minutes of attention to per day? :rolleyes: :D
"It will keep me out of bars" won't work, but how about "it's a hobby I can do at home?" Also, try taking him with you to visit a good permanent collection. (I have the impression there are several in southern CA, but I might be wrong.) If he likes art, talk about that half of bonsai -- proportion, line, visual balance, color, all matter in bonsai just as truly as they do in painting.
 

tnaz71

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Him. (I'm a lady-type.) :eek:

I am sorry! I should have noticed by your name.. In my defense it was like midnight when I posted & was tired haha.

Anyway's,

Aren't women the boss of the house? Mine for sure is! When she want's something she just gets it but, when I want something I have jump through hoops with her to get it. Which usually consists of cleaning for weeks, or going to the balet or a play... So ya I would just do it "he" will get over it soon enough.
 
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Well, you could get a job that has a history of mental disease, depression, high levels of stress, alcoholism, and drug abuse. At that point, if your significant other doesn't let you take up a hobby that is relaxing and calming, it's all too easy to turn it around on them ("Don't you want me to be happy?"). It's worked for me so far, although it's probably a little further than you're interested in going, lol, I kid.

Anyway, I'll go ahead and travel against the grain here and say that you should NOT convince him to spend more money on another tree, i.e. you should not get another tree at this time. You have a very nice juniper. Take care of it, learn from it, let it grow, and nurture it. The seedling is more of an interest than a bonsai, really, but it's fun all the same.

In the mean time, you can save up for your next tree. If after a year, you still have the seedling and the juniper alive, you should have learned so much from them. If you really do enjoy the hobby, he should be able to see that after a year or so.

Not exactly what you wanted to hear, I know, but I think it's the best advice I can give you. If you end up acquiring many small trees in a short period of time, you eventually get a bunch of sticks in pots, and nothing to be proud of. Instead, if you save up, take small steps, and get very nice bonsai trees at discount prices, its more like an investment than a splurge. Shoes cost $100, and when you put them on your feet they are officially worth $0. If you buy a very nice bonsai on sale from $1,000 to $600, and hold on to it for a year, it's still worth $1,000 (if not more, assuming you can keep it going). It's just an example, the numbers can be flexible. At that point it's living art, a stress reducer, a hobby, and an investment, all rolled into one.
 

007

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Anyway, I'll go ahead and travel against the grain here and say that you should NOT convince him to spend more money on another tree, i.e. you should not get another tree at this time . . . If you end up acquiring many small trees in a short period of time, you eventually get a bunch of sticks in pots, and nothing to be proud of.
I respectfully disagree completely. You will learn far, far more from those cheap "stick in a pot" trees than you will from any single juniper or any book. And while you might not end up with any specimen tree's (though you might! you just never know! One of my best tree's is the first one I ever got. A $10 "stick" . . . it didn't even come with a pot!!!), the knowledge you'll gain is priceless.

I spent the first several years in this hobby with nothing but these types of tree's while I learned the basics foundational aspects of each tree. And anytime I venture into a new species, I ALWAYS start with a cheap-o tree. Art aside, you need to know how to care for each tree and, personally I'd rather learn on a $25-50 tree than a $250-500 tree. The other downside is that if you stick with just this one little juniper, it is much more likely that you will become bored and disenchanted with the hobby . . .

Just my .02
 
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I see where you are coming from 007. Not that you are wrong, just different. Kinda like those that go with Chevy over Ford, or vice versa. Both sides of the coin are good here.

The other downside is that if you stick with just this one little juniper, it is much more likely that you will become bored and disenchanted with the hobby . . .
I think that's exactly my point. If you have one tree, and get bored with it so quickly and easily, to her husband it screams as if she isn't serious or interested in it. At what point does she not become bored? Two trees? Six trees? Forty trees? At that point, is she really loving the art of the trees, or is she more loving the art of acquiring sticks? Which one do you think her husband think's it is? If he knew, from the start, that one tree at $50 wasn't enough, but ten trees at $80-120 will be enough, how willing do you think he'll be in supporting this hobby, especially if he knows she's borderline disenchanted with it?

Personally, I know the difference, but I know that it is also difficult to show the difference to others, especially your significant other. Learning aside (which I will again respectfully disagree with you on that side 007), the two large issues it appears she has is 1) convincing her husband to let her spend money, and 2) money itself (as it usually is with everyone, because after all, if she had won the lottery I don't think her husband would mind her buying a tree or two).

The easiest way I know for her to convince her husband to spend more money on it is to show him how much she truly enjoys this hobby. Show it with actions, time, and dedication. Not with money, numbers of trees, and short distances. If he can see how much joy one tree can give you, it would be difficult for him to say no to you acquiring another one. But if instead you just start acquiring things, things start acquiring you. As far as the second one goes, that's easy. Just don't buy stuff right now! Lol, ok, maybe not "easy."

Not to say, of course, that I'm 100% correct, just a different perspective.
 
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Dav4

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I respectfully disagree completely. You will learn far, far more from those cheap "stick in a pot" trees than you will from any single juniper or any book. And while you might not end up with any specimen tree's (though you might! you just never know! One of my best tree's is the first one I ever got. A $10 "stick" . . . it didn't even come with a pot!!!), the knowledge you'll gain is priceless. I spent the first several years in this hobby with nothing but these types of tree's while I learned the basics foundational aspects of each tree. And anytime I venture into a new species, I ALWAYS start with a cheap-o tree. Art aside, you need to know how to care for each tree and, personally I'd rather learn on a $25-50 tree than a $250-500 tree. The other downside is that if you stick with just this one little juniper, it is much more likely that you will become bored and disenchanted with the hobby . . .

Just my .02

I agree with much of what is written above, but I believe reading as much as you can on forums like this as well as current magazines like Bonsai Focus or International Bonsai will provide you with a wealth of information. I also find that folks new to the hobby tend to obscess over the few trees they have. This usually leads to over watering, poorly timed pruning/re-potting/wiring/etc, and subsequently, a dead tree or at least one that fails to thrive. Patience in this hobby comes with experience, usually at the expense of our first trees that were killed with kindness. Having a small collection of trees, comprised of several different types that interest the hobbyist, will spread out that nervous energy and dissipate the potentially adverse effects of loving your one or two trees too much.
 

rockm

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Two words for any beginning bonsaist to remember:

"benign neglect"
 
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