How to create A Juniper Cascade Bonsai in around 15 mins!

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Juniper’s are currently one of the most popular species for bonsai. They are popular not just in Japan but all over the world. Fortunately, the juniper is a very common species and there are many many varieties of juniper scattered all over the temperate climate regions of the world.

This is a Chinese juniper and the variety is called the Ito Ogawa, which is a very fine foliage juniper. You have other varieties too. This is another variety of Chinese juniper called a Kissel. This is also from Japan and that’s another Otago, this particular juniper with lots of beautiful driftwood.

This is the Sabina juniper which comes from the European mountains, so junipers are lovely species, but most of these very exotic and large, beautiful specimens are usually very expensive trees and they are purchased by bonsai collectors and enthusiasts, who appreciate large beautiful material.

But what I’m going to show you today is how you can start off small and make beautiful juniper from ordinary common nursery juniper material. I’M now going to show you what we can use for making a Juniper bonsai.

These are very ordinary juniper plants, the varieties juniper communists, which is the common juniper and the varieties green carpet. It’S an evergreen. Of course all the junipers are, and you can buy these quite easily in garden, centers and we’ll pick one of these.

They are almost identical and we will make a bonsai from one of these plants. First thing you do when you get a plot like this, is to study the plant and try and find the trunk line. Some of the branches are pretty thin, but there is always a trunk in there which is much thicker.

So let us probe around there and see what is inside the plant. I will take it out of the pot and then tease around and look for the trunk. As you can see, it’s got lots of very healthy root and if you look closely, if there is a trunk which is visible, so I’m going to port around and clear it a little I’d have tea some of the roots and taken the soil level a bit Lower and you can see that there’s a nice trunk there and it’s got quite an interesting line, so we’ll just take away some of the branches.

I know that I won’t need just to show even more of the trunk now. This variety of juniper is a creeping juniper, it’s a ground-hugging juniper, it doesn’t tend to grow tall and because it’s a creeping variety, I think my first impression is that it will make a very nice casket type tree.

So, let’s find a little top for the Cascade and then a cascading branch that goes downwards, so I’m still touring around and seeing what is hidden inside this mass of branches. Whenever you choose nursery material, it’s always important to choose plants that have lots of branches because the more branches you have the more options you will have for creating the bonsai design.

You will hopefully be able to see that there’s quite a nice trunk there and there are several options for the cascading trailing branch which will make the Cascade and then a top as well. What I’m now trying to do is I’ll make a little head for the Cascade and perhaps one or two possibly two trailing branches going downwards for the Cascade part.

So I will begin by doing some very basic wiring. That’S the start of the head beginning to show, and I’m trying to find the trailing portion to make one of the first Cascade branches. The choice of Y will depend on how thick the branch you’re trying to wire the wire views is, I think, two and a half millimeter WA and the thickness of the trunk is about, I would say, ten or twelve millimeter, but much of the judgment comes from Either experience or knowing how flexible they were, the branches are, some junipers are stiffer than other.

So you may need to use a thicker piece of wire, but if it doesn’t work then you can always switch to another thicker grid of this one seems to work created. The head, which are finding the two – it seems, a shame, but we have to cut a lot of this off, as they say in bonsai.

Less is more if you’re not prepared to prune or freight to prove. You won’t make much progress, so be a bit bored. I’M now deciding which of these two main trailing branches to use as the main trailing portion.

I’Ve decided on using one, but I may need to use another one. I think it may have to be this one now, as you can see, there are three trailing branches that I can use. This middle one seems very stiff, and very straight, so I might have to discard this one.

This one in the front is more interesting because it’s got a bend in it and that could possibly be used and then the one up, the other end is also possible. So if I don’t use the center one, I will trim the shoots off, but I won’t cut the branch off completely because I can always make that into driftwood, so that will become a bit of a driftwood feature after all, with junipers driftwood occurs, naturally, with most Junipers as they get old, the weather and the growing conditions are such that they create natural driftwood.

So I will try and exploit that and make an artificial piece of driftwood. As you can see, a cascade style is appearing quite obviously from something which was completely flat. You can now see the start of the Cascade.

A lot of people ask me: how do you know what shape or what style to make it and the detail of the style? There are some bonsai enthusiasts who actually draw the design on paper and then try and create the bonsai from the design they’ve made.

But I don’t adopt that principle, because if you make a design beforehand, you try to stick rigidly to that and very often you end up trying to force the tree to follow the pattern of the design that you have visualized on that piece of paper.

I find it far better to not draw anything on paper, but have a vague impression in your mind as to what the shape will be and then, as you create it, let the shape emerge naturally what they call organically.

So that is my way of approaching the creation of bonsai. I have a vague idea. It’S not that I don’t have any idea, for I have a vague idea, but the detail I allow to emerge gradually as I work on the tree, so I may even change my mind, but that’s not a problem.

So if you notice what I’m doing every piece of wire straddles two branches, so that is reinforcing the two branch principle in wiring bonsai. If you follow the true branch principle, you won’t go far all so.

This is a primary or main wiring fairly thick wiring. I’Ve used allowed us to create the head and the tail as it were now that I’ve done that I’m going to shorten some of these lateral branches, because these are the branches that are going to be wired to form the pad.

So you’ll see the Cascade ship forming that branch that I kept a site for making a gin. I probably may not use it because it’s very straight it’s coming in the way. Now, where did you solve the second rewiring to arrange the branches in position? You have to have a choice of wise handy in case the.

Why we have is not the right one. So some of these bosses are 10 and some of them are slightly thicker. So if you choose the right greater wire to do the particular job, the classic cascade is like a little tree, a little bonsai at the top and then a trailing portion.

So if you make the top portion like a classic bono side, then you won’t go far wrong, so I’ll complete the head and see what turns out so the top is a classic pot size. You can see like an informal apart tree, so this portion is complete and now this is the cascading portion that we’re going to consider it long and we’re going to arrange some of these side branches to make them appear like the classic pads that you get on Any branch, so, as you can see our widest cascading portion like a classic pad, you know triangular shape like a herringbone, and then I will do the same.

This cascade tree is going to have two cascading branches. I haven’t decided to make two or one. I think I can make two: this is where the choice would one be better or two. I think, to make a classic chest kid.

We probably stick with one, so I will dispose of the other one that I did and see how it looks. This is where you have to be prepared to adapt to the design as it turns out, so that will just become an Audrey branch, and here we are, that is the completed cascade bonsai and I’m going to find a pot to fit this, and we will see How it looks in the cascade pot? Well, this is the pot shop at Harold’s bonsai and, as you can see, there are thousands of pots in our shop literally thousands.

We have pots that come from the famous cans of Japan like token army, and then we have the Yi Qing pots, which are from China. We have antique Japanese pots, very good quality, British ports, Korean pots and lesser quality Chinese pots.

There are even plastic bonsai pots in another program, I’ll explain to you how we choose pots for different types of bonsai, but for this exercise I’m only looking for a cascade pot. As you can see, cascade trees have a trailing branch and because it has a trailing branch, you need a tall pot.

You could use a shallow pot like that. That wouldn’t be right, so you need a tall pot to stand the pot taking all the roots in its embrace and then the branch coming down. So we will not use the shallow cuts, but go straight to some of the Cascade pots that we have on the nursery.

You will find that there are quite a lot of different colored pots. The glazed pots are like these. The reason why glazed pots are not often used for evergreen plants, lot of it is tradition in Chinese and Japanese folklore and traditional.

They always use sober, looking pots Anglais spots, the brown spots, the ones that don’t have a glaze for the evergreen trees. The glazed spots are usually used for colorful trees like the maples and other flowering trees.

So, although there are cascade pots which are with a glaze, we will try and stick to a tradition and use an unglazed pot. Mind you a lot of it is tradition. If you like, the look of a glaze pot by all means use it the only cascade pot that I can find that is of the right size and shape.

Is this beautiful, Japanese, red unglazed pottery, which I think will suit this tree now? This particular tree has quite a lot of root and because it’s in the autumn, it’s not really spring. I then cut too much root off and it’s been grown mainly in peat and bark soil to grow these trees for us.

So what I will do is see if it fits the part loosen the sign a little more and then add just a little bit of bonsai compost in this tree. This is our standard bonsai compost, as you can see, it’s a very open, granular soil and our favorite mixture for pines and junipers is to use a mixture of Levington peat based compost, orchid bark a little bit of akadama, some japanese pumice and japanese black sand.

So they’re quite a few ingredients that go in it. There’S no secret recipe, it’s just a mixture of different types of ingredients to make the soil very open and very free draining when we pop bonsai. The usual thing to do is to tie the tree in, but usually with cascade trees or cascade pots, because the pot is so deep.

There is less chance of the tree being pulled out of the pot, then if it will have a very shallow pot. So I won’t bother to tie the tree and, although there are time holds, I will just put some mesh to cover the bottom of the the holes.

So this is the traditional poor mesh so cut enough to cover the pot I’ll just place it at the bottom, because I don’t think there’s any danger of the mesh falling out put some of the bonsai soil at the bottom of the pot.

There are such a lot of roots for cutting a few of the roots off to won’t hurt the tree in the slightest the position of the pot for cascade trees. You can either have the diagonals or the corner of the pot as the front like this, or you can have the flat face of the pot as the front, whichever you wish, I think, to be different.

Let’S use the corner of the pot. That is quite acceptable too. We like to use a tool such as a chopstick to push the soil in because, especially with deep pots, there will be lots of crevices and you have to make sure that you’ve filled all the crevices with one cycle, pasta.

So take your time to turn around with eachother until it’s completely firm and there you are a complete cascade tree, and I think this was done in just 15 minutes.

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