Wild trees for bonsai 2019 (UK)

Mike Hennigan

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G potter has great success in collecting hawthorn. he's another who doesnt completely bare root/hose off the tree after collection. he did an article on this quite recently
https://www.kaizenbonsai.com/blog/2018/03/potting-yamadori-hawthorn-for-bonsai/

im in the same boat, i would remove most of the field soil by hand and leave a little something in the roots, that the tree was previously used to. i dont usually bare root nursery trees either.
Mad respect for Graham Potter! I think it just comes down to what works. I know, that for me, sweating works like a miracle for hawthorn. And the soil they grow in around here is super heavy clay. If I can get rid of it right away, I will. And I can easily do so with this method I use. I also look at it as capitalizing on this moment in time where this hawthorn will be the most vigorous it will ever be, the moment of collection. It’s always going to be less vigorous after it’s been in a pot for any number of years. Meaning it will probably give me the strongest response to root pruning it will ever give me, right after collection. If I have to go back in and slowly correct the roots over many years, that is taking years away from the development of the tree, I’d rather cut back really hard, wash it out, and then not have to bother the roots very much at all, besides minor trimming, ever again.

I understand my method isn’t going to work for everybody or for every tree though. At the end of the day it’s whatever you have to do to make it work!

Fantastic article by the way. That thing is a beast!
 

BobbyLane

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Mad respect for Graham Potter! I think it just comes down to what works. I know, that for me, sweating works like a miracle for hawthorn. And the soil they grow in around here is super heavy clay. If I can get rid of it right away, I will. And I can easily do so with this method I use. I also look at it as capitalizing on this moment in time where this hawthorn will be the most vigorous it will ever be, the moment of collection. It’s always going to be less vigorous after it’s been in a pot for any number of years. Meaning it will probably give me the strongest response to root pruning it will ever give me, right after collection. If I have to go back in and slowly correct the roots over many years, that is taking years away from the development of the tree, I’d rather cut back really hard, wash it out, and then not have to bother the roots very much at all, besides minor trimming, ever again.

I understand my method isn’t going to work for everybody or for every tree though. At the end of the day it’s whatever you have to do to make it work!

Fantastic article by the way. That thing is a beast!
more than one way to skin a cat the saying goes. i find trees establish far quicker without being completely barerooted.

i actually thought you was only into growing from seed. would love to see some of your larger tree projects sometime buddy!
 

Mike Hennigan

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more than one way to skin a cat the saying goes. i find trees establish far quicker without being completely barerooted.

i actually thought you was only into growing from seed. would love to see some of your larger tree projects sometime buddy!
LOL omg, let’s not bring that up again. ?. Well these two are my largest projects, literally speaking. A couple yews I dug up just this past spring about 6 feet tall from the ground. One I think will make a very nice almost-formal upright. Not sure about the other. They’re being left to recover for another year or two before I do any reduction.
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I haven’t posted many threads on my own trees yet but will be doing more come spring. I’m collecting my largest hawthorn yet in a couple months and plan to post a thread for that one so you can see how the magic happens in “real time”. ?

Always look forward to your threads, your style is along the lines of how I’d Like to treat a lot of the deciduous I collect around here. On a side note, I haven’t had great success in collecting American hornbeam, only about a 50% survival rate. Maybe I’ll see if retaining some field soil with those helps.
 

Cattwooduk

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Found this one a couple of days ago. Plan is to carve out the more central trunk and follow the existing bend from right to left then grow out a new leader heading right again depending where buds may pop. I think it's got some nice movement and interesting fat base, also gives me a chance to eventually do some nice carving and try some hollowing out of the large right hand section.

Excuse my crappy 2 minute virt!

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Cofga

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Last winter/spring I collected 1 viburnum, 2 hawthorns, 2 Car. hornbeam, 2 Am. beech. Lifted all with little or no fine roots. Both hawthorn survived, 1 hornbeam survived, and 1 beech survived. The single viburnum didn’t make it but they grow like weeds here so I will try again. This spring I am going for 2 wisteria, and 1-3 yew. I put mine in a mix of almost pure pumice with about 10% pine bark amd keep them misted and watered. Also used Rhizotonic.
 

Cattwooduk

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Went out and and collected this one. Initial chops made but unsure about leaving the taller one. Original plan was to cut it lower and eventually carve it, but now I'm not sure whether to use that instead. Also should I do an angled chop on the lower branch if I plan on using that to form the new leader, or angle both cuts? Any advice from someone with a bit better foresight would be appreciated!

I was also planning on using some root enzyme to give a boost but I couldn't find the packet I'm sure I had in the shed. Tempting to lift it tomorrow before it settles in and dust it a bit. On the one hand I really want this to pull through but on the other I haven't ever usedit on anything I've collected and had good success !

I put plenty of holes in the bottom of the trug and there's an inch layer of pebbles in the bottom for drainage.
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Mike Hennigan

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Went out and and collected this one. Initial chops made but unsure about leaving the taller one. Original plan was to cut it lower and eventually carve it, but now I'm not sure whether to use that instead. Also should I do an angled chop on the lower branch if I plan on using that to form the new leader, or angle both cuts? Any advice from someone with a bit better foresight would be appreciated!

I was also planning on using some root enzyme to give a boost but I couldn't find the packet I'm sure I had in the shed. Tempting to lift it tomorrow before it settles in and dust it a bit. On the one hand I really want this to pull through but on the other I haven't ever usedit on anything I've collected and had good success !

I put plenty of holes in the bottom of the trug and there's an inch layer of pebbles in the bottom for drainage.
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Nice dig man! I’m not sure about advice for the chops, but you can always take more off later. The one thing that I may be a little concerned about is the container it is in. Is it quite flexible? Can it shift the soil when you pick it up? I’ve stopped using thinner nursery cans even because when moving them their flexibility can disturb the soil too much. I use only quite ridgid plastic for containers now so I won’t disturb the new roots by accident.
 

Cattwooduk

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Thought I'd replied to this yesterday but appears not, maybe I started writing a reply on my phone and then forgot!

I had started making a wooden crate as usual but underestimated the size of this and overestimated how much wood I had which is why it ended up in the green tub thing. Yes it's fairly flexible but was all pretty packed in with the soil.
I actually ended up making a slightly bigger wooden crate today as I wasn't happy with how close to the sides of the green tub the roots were. I know it's pretty bad form to disturb it a couple of days after collecting but I thought I would take the risk and go back to do it properly. I cleaned up some of my root cuts, took some more off the main bulky chunk of central root at the bottom with a nice flat cut and then used some rooting power around to try and give it a bit of a boost, it's also wired in nice and securely now but the whole thing is almost too heavy to move now... think I'll screw a couple of handles on the sides!

I had considered trying the Tony Tickle sweating method as well, but after checking the weather forecast it looks like the whole week is going to be cloudy and only about 12 degrees. His guide says lots of sun and let it get hot inside the black bag... don't think that will happen for this week so I'll just leave it to recover as I usually do. Hopefully lifting it again hasn't stressed it any more but I feel like I've got away with far worse with some of the stuff I've collected!
 

peterbone

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I thought I'd post an update. The first 3 trees (Hornbeam and 2 Hawthorns) have been trenched a few weeks ago. I'll check on them over the summer and plan to collect the next year or the year after.

The big Field Maple has been collected and potted in pumice, bark and chopped sphagnum moss. It's quite impressive and has an interesting hollow going right through the trunk. It's now sweating in my polytunnel but is already developing buds on the trunk. Of course it's not out of the woods yet (pun intended). Not much roots were left after collection, but Field Maple recover well in my experience.



More here.

The Spindle is now sprouting new shoots. It's now sitting in a shaded area of my garden.



Most of the other trees I mentioned haven't been touched yet. Some will be collected next year. The Ash I will collect in a week or two.

I collected two other trees not mentioned as I found them afterwards. A Hawthorn and Blackthorn. Both are sweating in my polytunnel and have produced buds.


 

Tieball

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Went out and and collected this one. Initial chops made but unsure about leaving the taller one. Original plan was to cut it lower and eventually carve it, but now I'm not sure whether to use that instead. Also should I do an angled chop on the lower branch if I plan on using that to form the new leader, or angle both cuts? Any advice from someone with a bit better foresight would be appreciated!

I was also planning on using some root enzyme to give a boost but I couldn't find the packet I'm sure I had in the shed. Tempting to lift it tomorrow before it settles in and dust it a bit. On the one hand I really want this to pull through but on the other I haven't ever usedit on anything I've collected and had good success !

I put plenty of holes in the bottom of the trug and there's an inch layer of pebbles in the bottom for drainage.
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This...is...a...fabulous tree. It’s exciting to see the start of something with great potential. I hope to see some bud and leaf progress during your summer season.....so.....keep posting as growth takes charge. Mighty fine!

Can you share the measurements of this tree?
 

Cattwooduk

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It's not super even all around the base as you can see on one side it dips in a little, so one side is 6.5 inches across and the other is 8.5 inches. It's about 25 inches tall at the moment but may bring it down some more next year. I haven't quite decided on whether I'm going to keep the tall piece yet or carve it right back. Lots of growth sprouting all over so hopefully it'll keep powering through.

I did take it out of the green trug in the end and put it in a proper crate - need to put some handles on it because it's so heavy, hurt my back last time I moved it, awkward size. This happened a couple of days after collecting and I also tidied up some root cuts and took a bit more of the centre out to get it to sit lower. Decided it was worth the risk and it seems to have taken the work so far. We had a hot Easter weekend and I should have moved it into more shade so a few little bits of the new growth got scorched tips but nothing too serious. Where it is at the moment gets about 4 hours of direct sun and then shade the rest of the day.

Oh and the random pebbles and broken terracotta on the top is to stop my cats using it as a litter tray...

I collected another large ish Hawthorn and an interesting Elm but we're moving house in a couple of weeks, so over the last month I've been moving all my trees and potted plants to the in-laws bit by bit to save some money on the moving costs. I'll bring them all to the new place in time, they're keeping it all watered for me but I haven't looked at some of my stuff for a month or two!

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Mike Hennigan

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It's not super even all around the base as you can see on one side it dips in a little, so one side is 6.5 inches across and the other is 8.5 inches. It's about 25 inches tall at the moment but may bring it down some more next year. I haven't quite decided on whether I'm going to keep the tall piece yet or carve it right back. Lots of growth sprouting all over so hopefully it'll keep powering through.

I did take it out of the green trug in the end and put it in a proper crate - need to put some handles on it because it's so heavy, hurt my back last time I moved it, awkward size. This happened a couple of days after collecting and I also tidied up some root cuts and took a bit more of the centre out to get it to sit lower. Decided it was worth the risk and it seems to have taken the work so far. We had a hot Easter weekend and I should have moved it into more shade so a few little bits of the new growth got scorched tips but nothing too serious. Where it is at the moment gets about 4 hours of direct sun and then shade the rest of the day.

Oh and the random pebbles and broken terracotta on the top is to stop my cats using it as a litter tray...

I collected another large ish Hawthorn and an interesting Elm but we're moving house in a couple of weeks, so over the last month I've been moving all my trees and potted plants to the in-laws bit by bit to save some money on the moving costs. I'll bring them all to the new place in time, they're keeping it all watered for me but I haven't looked at some of my stuff for a month or two!

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It’s a beast! Leafing out all over the place too, should give you plenty of options for a lower chop or branching down the line. Nice.
 

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