Spring on its Way – A Short Tour of Herons Bonsai 1

In this video I take you on a tour around the nursery on a blustery day showing you the signs the trees are showing signs that spring is on its way.

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Today is the 10th of march and as always the talking point is the british weather so yesterday we had bright sunshine and lovely warm uh afternoon and today it’s blustery and stormy and we’re expecting gears in the morning if you can look at those trees they’re swaying in the wind westerly wind blowing you can hear the wind but despite all that there are signs of spring definitely spring on its way and here i am standing in front of this huge large bonsai and if you only like come close and look at some of the detail and all these lovely little cones are beginning to appear on the tree so i’ll just walk around with the camera i just finished the class i’ve started doing the classes again so this morning we had a class for five people especially distanced in my hall so we were all about four five meters apart look at what the wind is doing see blown the tree over it’s about to fall over and this is the trouble with the wind we’re going to get very strong winds and some of these tall trees will definitely get knocked over by these strong winds i better put this on the ground in case it gets blown down some more of course with the strong wind a lot of people suffer broken pots and then they come bringing them here and we have to repot them so i’m just going to walk through the tunnel these maples have been outside all through the winter all through the winter without any protection and we had temperatures of minus eight for three four days this is a deshojo look at the red buds all starting to appear another maple with the buds starting to appear and let’s walk through the big pine area these pines are perfect they are not put away at all this is the literati pine that i did which will be subject of another youtube video or big white pines so although they’re just covered with the shade netting and they’ve been exposed to minus eight degrees centigrade several nights running i don’t think they’re suffering another tree this has been outside all winter in the hard frost and they’re already starting to leave what a lovely sight what a lovely sight these are our satsuki azaleas the condition is beautiful again no protection just the shade just the shade tunnel look at us the bright green lovely bright green they’re certainly looking good these are the trees that i make for the youtube videos all youtube projects and my japanese apricot this has been flowering for well over a month almost six weeks this is the last of the flower and if i walk into another area here look at the maple here almost completely in leaf look at that so spring is really on its way i haven’t put the camera down yet and i’m just walking to another area and this is the tree that i split in half with the axe look at that beautiful flower look at that flower and that was the tree that was cut in half and this is looking good so this is outside with no protection whatsoever i’ll just walk into another area now in this area look at this great big foresight here this is the one that is always covered in flower and the flower buds are almost about to break into bloom look at that massive trunk i don’t know if you can hear the wind wind is really gusty sometimes these tall trees i fear they get blown over so i may get some of the stuff to put them on the ground i’ll just take you for a complete walk these are all our old trees again just the protection of the shade tunnel and it has kept them so strong and healthy and green no need for the greenhouse no need for the greenhouse the other thing i want to show you the evergreens we’ve started feeding already so this is the fertilizer we use so the trees have been fed this was done a week ago and this is a good time to do it our white pines they’ve been repotted we grow them from small to become big and this maple here look at that this has been growing outside all winter and already almost in full leaf this pine by the way is a japanese five needle pine on its own roots they have this slight yellowish cast and they’re different from the grafted ones the grafted ones have got more of a deep green color and look at how deep green my junipers are this shade netting has prevented them from getting brown the usual winter frost blush what i call and these are our satsuki azaleas again in beautiful deep green condition we didn’t have to repot this uh batch of satsuki’s because they were done last year so they’re doing quite well they didn’t have to be repotted some of the trees we keep outside another tree about to be blown over by the storm so let’s put these down on the ground i must get the staff to do these jobs before the day is out more maples about to come into leaf look at that beautiful sight look at that beautiful sight all starting to leave look at that it really brings joy to your heart this i have revived this great big 200 year old you this is one of our very old trees and we’ve had this since 2005 so we’ve had it 12 15 16 years and it is still being refined a lot of people ask how come you’ve got old trees yes we get old trees but they’re already three four generation trees and i’m probably the fifth generation not in the same family but we’ve had four other generations look after that tree and i’m carrying it on and this is something rather unusual this is just a rosemary bush that i dug up from my garden this already rolls me a nice trunk and look at the flowers on this rosemary bonsai so you can make rosemary into bonsai these are our itoigawa junipers these are all very long-term projects these are imported from japan back in the 1990s and the early 2000s those were the years i used to buy junipers from japan to grow on so they’ve been growing on the nursery for more than 20 years so these trees are all 60 80 plus years old this puts things into perspective most people see my videos and say oh you make a bonsai in three minutes so the trees are only like three minutes old no no thanks it’s not three minutes old most of them are i will show you some of the use we use these used seedlings here are four years old and these are the ones i can make in three minutes and i’ll show you some other projects this is the project that padma priya made this is the cascade procumbens juniper this is the backside and this was made in about half an hour but the trees themselves are about eight maybe ten years old see these are all eight to ten year old trees that we convert into bonsai in in very quick time and while i’m here these are the christmas trees this is a christmas tree that i made maybe a year ago i refuse to sell this people keep worrying me to buy it but i haven’t sold this i want to see how this develops more for scythia coming into bloom this is the big trident maple of ours which i just pruned yesterday so this has been pruned and it’s about to come into leaf if i show you the detail you can see all the leaf buds the ones that i didn’t prune just about to open into leaf but i’ve pulled quite hard over here you can see all the ends that i pruned and this is a tree i don’t think you’ve seen this yet but i made this about two months ago so this will be the subject of another youtube video this is also going to be a subject of another youtube video this was done last week this is our main growing tunnel and this tunnel has slightly elevated temperatures so the trees grow faster here that’s my great big forest that i’ve owned for 1993 nearly 30 years it’s been here our pride and joy these are customers trees we repot trees for customers because they are either too big for them to handle or they are scared to do it themselves so these have all been repotted for customers and they’re waiting for the customers to come and collect them now over here we’ve got maples which have been in the tunnel and just the slightly elevated temperature of the tunnel has brought these maples out into leaf how nice is that so if you can invest in a polytunnel like this not as big as this and just elevate the temperature a little bit you will get about one or two months of extra growth this is the naka juniper forest that i’ve re constructed and remade this will be the subject of another youtube video and these are the japanese quince which are just coming into flower we’ve got them in many different shades of color and we produce a lot of the white ones which we propagate and for those who think that we don’t propagate these are juniper cuttings we produce a lot of junipers ourselves more cuttings those are satsuki azalea cuttings these are hornbeam cuttings and these are little projects that i did bonsai for free if you remember black pines being refined and let me show you this famous tree of ours this is the tanooki larch again i’ve started feeding the tree and you can see the detail of this tanooki let me turn it around for you there you go look at the buds look at the lovely birds all coming into leaf all coming into leaf is that lovely and these are the forest groups that we make from five six-year-old seedlings those are seedlings that we grow ourselves and here there are more seedlings and cuttings that we are sowing these are junipers that are waiting to be refined we grow them on as bigger specimens you can see look at this growth 30 to 40 centimeters of growth has occurred between the autumn and the spring and we will now decide whether to make this a bigger tree to plant on or to make air layerings from them so from one tree you can get two trees by air layering so all these junipers have produced all these long long shoots and i’m not in a rush to prune them off because i’m going to either make cuttings from them or grow these trees into larger trees so we are no rush to sell these trees because they’re all being grown either for propagation to make cuttings or to make into smaller trees by air layering so this is what we do with these trees this is the backside of that famous maple forest of mind these are large forests that we make here on the nursery these are four going on five-year-old seedlings and there you are there are more large forests all made here so please don’t think that everything is imported we grow most of the things here we are a growing nursery in more centers than one and this is the tunnel that i’ve spent a lot of money refurbishing this tunnel was completely refurbished at enormous cost and this is where we grow all our plants there you go have a look i don’t know why i’m showing you all this i’m giving you all the trade secrets these are the big maples you may remember that we did a youtube video where we cut the six foot high tall maples and we cut them down to 18 inches that’s 45 centimeters and this is how the large bonsai are made so growing a tree six foot tall and then cutting it down what a stupid thing to do a lot of people say you must be mad i think i am and there are more juniper plants growing those are the bloss junipers which again we buy as very small plants and they’ve been growing here for two years and they won’t be sold for another two or three years they will be sold when they’re much bigger and i’m going to wire each and every one of those i sometimes feel like doing a video of all of them but i can’t strap a camera on my chest and work at the same time but in the late evening i work on these trees and make bonsai some of my staff also do it but there are so many other jobs that they can be doing i don’t often take you to our growing fields but you will all know that we have some huge growing views let me just walk you through there these are all our old junipers that are here for going on and that’s the big see the forest that i made in the youtube video this is it this is that great big cedar forest since making it uh i’ve planted so that two four six eight nine trees have made up the number four to six six and three nine so i’ve added one more tree to it so there are nine trees in that group i do chop and change and keep altering the shapes of these trees everything looking very green so as i say spring is certainly on its way and i will just show you what jack has been doing this morning well the weather has been so good lately that we’ve been mowing our grass for the past two weeks so you can see how our japanese gardens look not japanese garden it’s all part of the nursery but it is just kept neatly these are our big trees that are grown here these are all very long-term projects we have long-term projects where trees are just grown to become older and older we are not in a rush to sell it and we do sell the things which are made very quickly which don’t take long time to make so all this grass has been moan but the maples growing in the field they have not come out into leaf yet because they are really exposed to the cold weather so they will come into leave i would say towards the end of march early april i’ll just walk up to some of these field grown trees and show you the state of the foliage because i want to compare it with those that have been grown in the tunnel which are in full leaf so you can get different stages of growth in different areas so these maples this is a arakawa this isn’t showing signs of growth yet ah but look at this this is the white bark beach vegas granata and the leaves are already starting to open you see they’re green already so the beach leaves are starting to come out and this is one big area this is about i would say 100 meters long maybe more it could be 120 meter long by about 50 no this must be about 15 to 20 meters wide this area we’re going to use as a new planting area this used to be the orchard and we’re going to plant our maples and pines in this area to grow into larger trees so this has been plowed up waiting to plant and in 10 days time i’m going to get a big digger and we’re going to dig the trees up from the field trees i’ve been growing here for the last 20 30 years so from time to time we dig them up these are trees that i’ve counted 20 years ago this is japanese yew so they will be dug up and made into big bonsai or big garden trees these are the horn beams that we’ve been growing in the field and you can see all the bags on the trees these are the air layerings that we did towards the end of last summer and because they were started last summer i don’t think they may have rooted so we’ll keep it for another year and i would say by the middle of the summer these should have rooted so this is how we propagate our big trees with air layering bags this how we grow our pines these are pines in the field these are maples that we plant in the field to thicken these were planted a year ago as six-year-old trees and they will probably be left here for about another three or four years these are our fuji cherries that we grow in the field look at them they’re all starting to bloom so these are fuji cherries that we grow these are all our own production here so they’ll be grown into bigger trees not everything is grown permanently in the ground all these pines have been grown in the ground and they were dug up two years ago so they are waiting to be used for projects when people come to the nursery to for workshops they use these trees to do projects with us these are the tall maples which are about three four meters tall all grown for the last 20 to 30 years and on the right hand side these maples were all about three four meters tall and after going at 3 4 meters we cut it down to 60 centimeters or 70 centimeter this is where people say that i’m crazy but this is how bonsai is made so more maples in the ground we grow a lot of maples in the ground we are self-sufficient in maple i’ve always told people this is how we produce our thick trunk maples when you see all these beautiful maples on the nursery with thick trunks they don’t start as important trees we do not import our maples at all we are proud that we produce all our maples here on the nursery there are just thousands of maples eat your heart out other nurseries these are all our own production these are larches all large is our own production those are all our pines our own production so that’s a quick tour and i’m just passing some larches and look at that beautiful sight of all these lovely cones on the trees just waiting to burst open even the largest with just ordinary leaf buds what a lovely sight all beginning to leaf so on this very dull and dreary day look at the blue sky leading skies cold wind but spring is certainly on its way again look at these seedlings for free holly seedlings growing inside this pot of lots there four holly seedlings there they’re all self-sown they will all become bonsai on the nursery oh i can’t stop look at these larches all starting to leaf howling gale and howling wind more maples in the ground thick maples thin maples there are 200 maples here waiting to be dug up i will show you another clip when we have the digger here the digger is coming in 10 days time and we will show you how we’re going to dig this up with the digger that will be fun that will be great fun so that will be the start of another journey so these are all maples either still growing or cut see these have been cut so this is the start of another maple bonsai more maples more maples thousands of maples and here there are thousands of hawthorne junipers use these were grown in the ground and then dug up because we can’t leave them in the ground forever some more large seedlings these are already into leaf look so these are well advanced we use these for making forests or into s-shaped trees so this is herons i hope this gives you some appreciation of how we grow our trees this is just growing it’s not about converting into bonsai this is how the raw material is propagated and then this is what we use for making bonsai so there you go i hope you’ve enjoyed this little series these are the junipers they’re caught by frost so they’ve got that brown blush normally they should be bright green but they’re not dead a lot of people look at these brown trees and they think they’re dead and those are our big zelkova trees reaching to the sky they will just help to improve the environment to give us clean air so they will not be cut down to make into bonsai they will be there just to give us pleasure so with that i hope you’ve enjoyed this little walk [Music] you

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