Greenwood Bonsai – Maples Made Easy

Bonsai Maples Made Easy

Hello everybody i’m corinne tomlinson from greenwood bonsai studio here in the studio again this week we’ve had a really busy week at the nursery this time of year in early spring but i want to try and just do a sneaky little video for you on what we’ve been doing this week at this time of year early spring we’re fighting against nature to try and get deciduous trees worked on and processed before they come into leaf so recently quite a few of our videos have been deciduous trees and particularly maples and i’ve done some videos of some quite nice maple some specimen trees and more mature trees but all these mature specimen maples they have to start somewhere here’s a clump style multiple trunk japanese maple from my collection but this tree is about 45 years old and obviously it started from a more basic younger tree so one of the jobs i’ve been doing this week is working my way through a batch of maples and i’m going to just talk you through the process and show you what we’re doing so these are some maples not bonsai maples just garden tree maples ace upon martem and the bare roots they’ve been dug out the ground like this and there’s a bundle here i think there’s about 10 in a bundle so i’m just gonna work my way through them and i haven’t had a look at these trees so you’re looking at them the same time i’m looking at them and obviously they can be quite variable and what we’re going to do is going to process them for bonsai and to see uh to see what we’ve got so let’s start off with this top one and i’ve tried i’m trying to talk my way through what we’re going to do with them so this particular one look it’s about about a meter tall maybe a bit over a meter tall yeah just with the normal root system you’ll find they’ve been growing in the ground and probably about about four or five years old so this one’s a potential to be a multiple trunk you’ve got three trunks here it’s got quite a good radial root system on it you see here there’s a few wispy roots that we don’t need so what i’m trying to do with these trees is to trim them so we can use them potentially for bonsai now this is a grading process they might not all make the grade some might be used for bonsai some will sell in nursery pots and they can perhaps become bonsai with a bit more growth and some might just be sold as garden trees here at the nursery so this one the roots i’m going to trim the roots back to get less diameter to them there’s a root here that’s growing strongly upward so that can come off this one here is a bit long this strong root i’m going to shorten that back in can you see this this has got a quite a lot of roots at this level and then it’s got the old tap root coming down here so this can be removed so best way to get rid of that with a concave pruner see if we can get it in there and just trim that tap root off like that so we’re always trying to get a flatter root system particularly important if the future of this tree is going to be bonsai related so this isn’t a problem getting it like this obviously that will go into a shallower pot so let’s have a little look at the top of the tree so briefly speaking this is a main trunk here this is the thickest one so we might be looking at this as the front of the tree this section here has got a bit of scarring on it look where it’s obviously rubbed against something in the field so that’s not a very good formation so we’re probably wanting to get rid of that so what i’m going to do we’re going to just come up here as a main tree we’re going to trim this section back get rid of that section that had the scar in it we’re going to travel up this one a little bit more to about here and then this secondary branch here this trunk will take to this sort of height and this one to this sort of height and just snip those little bits back like that so what i’ve tried to do is just briefly trim it back so we’ve got a main leader trunk the secondary one and a third one and they’re not they’re all different heights and this tree has got potential in future to be a triple trunk bonsai so this one we might end up potting it we could probably put this with it’s quite quite a shallow root system but it could potentially get it into a plastic bonsai training pot something like this i’m going to talk my way through these trees like this and then we’re going to pop them up and i’m going to show you them afterwards when they’re all potted i’m going to keep them here on the nursery for a few months so we can do a follow-up video of how they progress over the next few months so that’s the first one trimmed and potentially it’s going to go into one of those parts so just pop that to one side for now let’s have a look at the next one see what we’ve got so again with this quite a deep root system not an issue to trim it back like this to get a more compact root system and the top of the tree again look if i hold it up against the plain background this is a little bit too flimsy and this this secondary trunk is quite good but this is quite substantial and a bit boring so if i take that shoe off and then we come up here up here and we leave the top of the tree here and shorten this back and leave back and this is the sort of thing we’re looking at and again that’s not bad that can develop into a into a twin trunk tree so that’s potentially gonna go into a pot like this and even if we’re putting them into these training pots try not to put them in the center straight up right a little bit off center a little bit of a lean to it to make it look a little bit more dramatic so we’ll pop that to one side so that’s probably going to go into one of those pots so let’s have a look at another one so again here we trim back the diameter of the root ball take the remains of the tap root off i see these are young trees that have been grown from seed and again with this we’ve got two trunks this one on the right is the thicker one so this wants to be taller and more dominant over this secondary one now this secondary one this growth here is quite strong but quite thick and clunky we’re better off using this more delicate growth here so if i get rid of this heavy section and then if we come up this right hand trunk and we get rid of a heavy section in the top of that and then here we can trim this back like so so that’s three of them done let’s see what else we’ve got now this one here hasn’t got so many twigs further down and the roots aren’t really as good on it so this has got of the ones we’ve done so far this has got the least potential now if this was your tree and you got it in your in a pot at home one of the things you could do with this you could potentially do an air layer at this sort of level which will allow you to take the top of the tree off in the coming months so that would be a usable section this is a little bit boring so what we’ll do with this one is we’ll just uh we’ll trim this heavy root back we’ll shorten these back a little bit and we’ll trim the top back to this break here and that one i think we’ll put into uh we’ll just put that into into a plant pot something like that and we’ll grow it on see if it becomes a little bit better looking in future uh or it might go for a garden tree so that’s four of them done let’s see here’s another one so again with this these roots shorten this back this tap root if we kind of shorten it back through here this is split just here this route can you see where they’ve dug it out the field there’s a crack and a split in it there so that wants to be taken off just to neaten up that area this is funny this branch coming out with a strange movement on it these are a bit too flimsy and then looking at the actual rest of the tree again potentially a multiple trunk if we come up here up this trunk shorten this trunk back to this finer growth and probably shorten that right back down to that little break just there let that make a make a tree in that sort of style i think this tap root actually might be able to take that back a little bit further into here which will allow me to get into a slightly shallower part so this is quite a chunky one it’s one of the biggest ones in this in this bunch quite heavy roots so a few flimsy little wispy roots there that we don’t need and again when i’m trimming these trees because of the size of them and they’ve got quite a lot of thick moves you know that’s why i’m using a pair of secateurs which i rarely use for bonsai but in this case they’re the best tool for the job so here the roots on this aren’t great but the trunks quite good it splits here into two but it all gets a bit busy in here so i’m going to try and take out the thicker sections this bit this section here and i’m coming up here this is nice movement through here when you get to this point there’s a nice break here where it breaks at three or four sections but then this is very heavy you know so if i take that heavy section off and a lot of this i’m taking off the heavy clunky sections and keeping the finer growth so once i get to this sort of stage with this tree then i’m going to go in with a pair of on-site scissors and just trim back some of this longer growth some of you know that be surprised at how quick i’m trimming it’s not because i’m being slap dash with it it’s because i’ve got about 300 of these and i’ve done 200 so i’ve been practicing this week and i’ve got a bit quicker so once we get into that sort of stage look that’s got some potential in the future let’s see what we’ve got now this is this is this looks like the runt of the litter of the 10 trees and maybe that this is one of them so that’s just a little tiny one so we’ll just knit the top back on it and that will just go is to use probably at the back of a group planting to give us a bit of depth or pop that into a little a little plant pot let’s see what else we’ve got here and again another one here with some little wispy roots that want taking off the tap root once taken back these can be shortened structure of this tree this is a bit strange torta twin trunk goes up to here and breaks to three or four places this one crosses over this one this one’s not very good um a bit of a bit of an ugly duckling that let’s take that off so it doesn’t cross over let’s come up this section and then we’ll just come up this main one and shorten these back all together yeah and that’s that’s destined for a plant pot to grow it on for a little while so a bit variable well that’s what it’s like sorting through them seeing what we can do with them this is a quite a large one of the batch let me trim the roots first to make it a bit more more manageable right so with the roots trimmed this is what we’re looking at and this again has got some damage on this upper section yeah this this could have been from this could have been from uh animals or something nibbling them in the field could have been from deer or something like that or something strip the bark off these before we’ve purchased them so let’s see what we can do we’ve got a sort of twin trunk here and what brakes have we got on it this is a bit boring isn’t it if we take this section down to here again we’re coming up this thinner line and that’s at the back and then we take this same section off here and shorten it back so that we’ve got something like this [Music] a couple more left again with this one look these roots have grown a little bit too far up the trunk they can be taken back and then this tap roots just shorten it back like so trim this back a little bit take that heavy shoe top will come up these finest shoots so that’s a good one that we could use uh in a group planting in the future a lot of you perhaps would have seen the video that we did a couple of weeks ago on japanese maple group plantings and the trees that i used in that group planting were basically this sort of tree but a year further on with a few more twigs so this is as they start out and if we’re lucky we get to you know a few hundred of these every year that we do this procedure to that make good stock for group plantings either for me to do here or to do on workshops and classes now this one the roots are a bit of a jumble there’s a break on the roots here where it come it goes to a finer route so if i take that section off there and in here a little bit back and this section back and then coming up the tree it’s got a few twigs lower down well these are all going to put out and these will develop as branches and with them not being too thick we’ve got a possibility of managing to wire some of these down so i don’t want to come too far up this tree so i’m going to going to finish this tree off in here so concave prune will be the best tool for the job here and get in between that section and trim that back like so okay so what we’ve ended up with let’s have a let’s have a recap we’ve got that quite chunky one we’ve got this massive one that’s kind of a twin trunk so those two and then we’ve got another twin trunk another little one here four [Music] five six seven that triple trunk eight nine ten so we’ve got eleven in that bunch of ten well we’ve got about ten and a half i don’t think you can count that as a one but it count that as a half so what i’m gonna do is i’m gonna pop up these uh these eleven trees uh i’ll do one for you now [Music] okay so stage two of this procedure now is popping the trees up so i’ve just been to get a tripod turntable and some pots and the bits of wire and things that i need so we’re going to wire the tree into this pot so use a bit of two and a half mil wire just pop it up through the drainage holes in the bottom of the pot like so we’ll put a little bit of mesh over the drainage holes just to stop the soil falling out as we usually do like that and then we’ll put a bit of compost in the bottom now i’m just using our basic bonsai compost for this which is a mixture of two parts peat two parts grit and one part johnny’s number two just like that we’re gonna pop this tree into it this is what i think i think also the first tree that we trimmed this triple trunk so facing me want a little bit more root off that back a little bit more compost add in and then we’re going to plant it just to the left hand side of the pot like this lean it over to the right so once we’re happy of where we’re planting it within the pot we can add more compost like that and then just firm it down all the way around the tree [Music] and then this wire i’m just going to bring it across the back of the tree pull up this end to meet it like that just hold the tree and pull just twist the wire just because it’s a shallow part it doesn’t take a minute to wire it in just to make it a little bit more secure pop it down that’s the first one spotted like that these larger cuts that we’ve made on this tree anything over a sort of pencil thickness at this time of year early spring it’s quite important to seal those cuts it will stop the tree weeping and losing sap but also cosmetically look that’s quite an obvious cut we put some wound sealant on it my preferred wound sealant is that balsam and we’ll just dab some of that on those cuts to help to seal and promote healing on those tips so dab that on that’s that done i’m gonna pop it over here on to the side and we’ll have a look at doing a few others so a few of these ones that were a little bit less interesting this was just a sort of a boring one wasn’t it we said we’d we’d grow it on for a while so that one can go into a plant pot some soil in the bottom you can use normal horticultural potting compost for these in plant pots but we prefer to use our bonsai mixture because it’s a bit grittier and it gives better drainage for the trees so another one potted up like that see what else we’ve got in these larger ones probably slightly larger training pot for this sort of one to give it a bit of room to grow on so what i’ll do i’ll get the rest of these potted and then you can come back to me in a few minutes and i’ll show you them all lined up and talk you through them thank you okay so welcome back i’ve just been busy potting up these trees it’s a little bit boring to show you me potting up 11 trees so i showed you the first couple and now i’m just doing the uh the last one here this has got quite a nice base to it here so we’re putting this into an oval training pot plastic bonsai pot so if you’ve got any trees young trees like this that you’re developing then these pots are really cost effective alternative to give you a bit of a bonsai image but without that breaking the bank just tie it in just snip off that excess piece of wire push it into the soil so we’re doing i’ve already put the wound sealant on the top of this there’s a little bit to go on further down on this little cut here and this one here that’s a bit more at the top okay so these ones behind me are the ones that we’ve got from that it’s that big bundle of japanese maples so we’ve graded them out we’ve probably got we’ve got a couple that are a little bit boring that we’ll grow on for a few years we’ve just put them into plant pots for now we’ve got the tiny little little wimpy one that can go over with those we’ve got this one that was a bit had a bit unusual structure not really very good for bonsai so they’re probably the four sort of b grade ones if you like and then we’ve got a couple of nice twiggy ones at the back there that we’ve put into bonsai training pots we’ve got that larger single one with a nice base to it we’ve got a possible sort of twin trunk here in this one with some movement another one here quite chunky at the base and then we’ve got the first one we did this triple trunk and then another little twin trunk here so we’re going to take all these trees we’re going to put them in a cold greenhouse just to shelter them a little bit and we’re going to pop so we’re going to just let them come into leaf naturally they should be in leaf in about three to four weeks time once they’re in leaf we’ll pop pop a bit of bonsai food on them probably use bonsai food and it will just help to keep them healthy and get them to put some more growth on and we will do this as a follow-up video uh i’m gonna put these trees to one side and label them up so in a few weeks time i can bring them back in the studio and we can show you them in leaf and show you what they’ve done if you’ve enjoyed this video then please watch our other videos and like and subscribe to our channel so you don’t miss any new content thank you very much

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