One of my favourite hobbies is Bonsai, I have a small selection of trees and I am happy to share some pictures and experiences on this page. One of my favourite trees is the Cotoneaster, which is around five years old and was rescued from a garden centre/DIY store.
In these pages I shall show you more of my trees with accompanying photographs and describe the activities carried out on them to keep them as attractive bonsai trees.
I shall also introduce you to other bonsai growers that have influenced me and kept encouraging me through some of the disasters I have had.
I’ll start by introducing you to my current trees and a little information about them. The Cotoneaster shown above was bought 2 years ago from a DIY shop for 50p, it looked a little worse for wear, but I thought it had some potential. I trimmed the roots and heavily pruned the tree leaving just one main branch. Following re-potting I then heavily wired it into the trailing shape I desired. The wiring was left on for 12 months, changing every now and again to ensure the wire didn’t eat into the bark. Here we are two years later with a nice looking tree that has produced flowers and berries this year.
Another of my favourites is my Butterfly Acer. I bought this from Aldi’s I believe for two or three pounds. This was bought potted in a standard pot and was about 20″ high.
I therefore pruned the roots quite heavily and removed a lot of the top shoots and foliage , I then re-potted it into a bonsai pot.This tree has had its roots and branches pruned quite heavily each year and currently stands at about 12″ high.
I mentioned that I have had some disasters along the way. So let me tell you about one of them, my little Chinese Elm (at least I think that is what it is). I
bought it as a Bonsai tree from a local nursery (Deens Garden Centre). All was well with it, as you can see in the picture on the left, until we went on holiday. When we came back I found that it had not been watered for the entire fortnight and was looking decidedly unwell, well dead actually.
But I did not give up with it and continued to water it along with the other trees and soon it began to show signs of life, producing little branches up the main trunk. I was delighted and nurtured it, talked to it and encouraged it to grow. And it did, becoming a beautiful looking tree once again.
Then disaster stuck again, we went away in the winter and during that time had some very hard frosts and several inches of snow. I had not left any instructions with the dog-sitter so the tree was left in these freezing conditions. When we got back, guess what? Yep, it had died again.
Once again I did not give up on it and put it a bigger pot with some fresh compost and Bonsai soil and left it. And beyond all expectations it has started growing again. It now has a completely bare trunk with a 6″ branch luxuriously covered in leaves. This little tree just did not want to give up!!!