Which Larch is Best For Bonsai?

Larch Forest Work, Day 2, The Bonsai Zone, Jan 2022

The composition on this forest is gorgeous! Your earlier videos is the reason I own so many! Thanks for sharing and the suspense!

hi everyone nigel saunders here welcome back to day two of working on my large forest in the middle of winter in day one of this series i worked on the apex of the tallest tree up here trying to get it a little slimmer and fitting in more with the style of the other trees in the forest that was somewhat successful i’m going to keep working on that into the future years i also removed all the needles off of the trees the ones that we’re still hanging on and i’m starting to clean up all the needles from around the base of the trees cleaning up the moss and i’ve got to get rid of all the lichen off the trees which is building up very very thickly here’s a look at some of the branches and you can see the lichen is getting quite a thick layer in some places so i’ve got to scrub that all away a little bit of lichen can look quite nice on your trees it kind of gives them a bit of age but when you get big thick layers like that on some of the branches it can prevent back budding all those dormant buds that could develop on your branches are kind of blocked blocked by the lichen they don’t get much light and they’ll just stay dormant they won’t develop so i’m going to clean all the branches today of the lichen i’m going to use a toothbrush to clean the lycone away and it’s very hard to get off the trees when the lichen is dry so what i do is i get my spray bottle and i missed all the trees soaking the lichen you let it soak for a few minutes and then when you go to brush it with the toothbrush it’s much much easier to get off someone said that if you get a lot of lichen on your trees it means you have good air quality so i don’t know if that’s true but i get a lot of liking on my trees it builds up and builds up look how thick some of these branches are covered in lichen like it’s unbelievable even the trunks on some of these trees i mean they’re bright green with lichen no bark texture at all on them it’s incredible like even up in my apex here it’s all covered in green yeah it’s just definitely time to thin out the lichen holy i’ve done this before it just keeps building back up yeah incredible just incredible amazing stuff lycan i have finished brushing the lycan off tree number one can you guess which tree it is they’re all green except for one here so this is the tree here it’s all the lichen is off of it so that yeah that was a lot of work it took me a full hour to do this one medium-sized tree so there’s eight trees in this forest so i have seven left to do so i’ve got a lot of work i’ll just keep working away i’m not going to be able to get it all done today so i’ll just i’ll just have to keep going i’m working on taking all the lycan off the main tree so when you’re doing this make sure you support your branches as you’re brushing you don’t want to break them off so you’ve got to get a hand underneath all the branches especially the fine delicate ones because they can break quite easily and this time of the year the buds are quite tightly closed so you don’t really have to worry about you know you can brush around the butt area as long as you’re not scrubbing too hard so i’m just doing all the branches getting this lichen off just keep spraying with water which kind of makes your hands quite cold out here but what can you do now so it takes a long time for doing each tree it is you know you got to be very careful around your branch tips occasionally on some of the dead branches you’ll get you know the little fine handle break off or something but you know what can you do you try and be as careful as you can and that’s all you can do you might get a little bit of breakage here and there on some dead fine dead twigging but that’s just the evolution of the tree as it won’t say i guess this branch is getting there so i think it’s going to take me uh probably several days to do this i’ll probably get you know maybe i can get four trees done a day i don’t know i guess it depends on how how much time i’ve gotten the day to spend on it i’ll just keep at it so if you don’t see any videos coming you’ll know this is what i’m doing i’m scrubbing lichen off my large trees here’s a dead branch here so you got to be really careful with these that they don’t break off you’ve got to support them with your hand as you’re brushing i’m starting at the top of the trees and my working my way down because it is a fairly messy job now right now when these trees are you know wet like this and the lichen is freshly scrubbed off they look very kind of reddish dark brown reddish color but as soon as the sun hits them and they dry out a bit this will turn to kind of a light gray and then as the tree grows all this bark will begin cracking like it is down below and it’ll slowly obtain or get that really aged mature look to the trees it’s kind of like the bark is like the final icing on the cake something that comes with an old tree is you get that nice fine old looking bark on it there’s always something to look forward to as your trees get older they are they’re always changing and hopefully getting better not all bolts i get better with age but with proper management they should you know barring insect attacks or you know weather events that are out of your control but you know most trees should get slowly better with age well i’m glad i’m doing all this because this will keep all these branches nice and healthy come spring all these buds won’t have to fight with all this liking on the branches [Music] especially at the branch tips here sure gives you a good look at your uh trees it’s like washing your car when you wash your car you notice every dent and scratch in the bodywork and when you’re scrubbing lichen off your branches you sure get a good look at each branch you see what’s doing well on the branch what areas have died off what needs pruning and what doesn’t forces you to look at every branch very carefully so here i’m into the delicate branches being very careful to use a light touch on the brush support it with my fingers give it a rinse and even if you don’t get 100 of the lichen off you know as long as you get like 90 off the tree will do really well i mean there’s some spots that are just really really hard to get into that’s looking quite good all right still got some work on these back branches but i’m getting there the top of the tree is slowly being revealed i have got the main tree in the forest cleaned up of its lichen it took a long time it’s a lot of surface area on this tree and a lot of branches to do so that’s two trees done now so i’ve got to do all the ones at the back a lot of work to go but i’m really glad i got that done it’s uh nice to see them scrub clean once again i’ve now got three trees all cleaned up of the lichen so i did this back one in here yeah so i’ve got one two three four five five to go some of them are small but there’s a lot of details to do on them it’s gonna be a lot of work so i’m going to continue this work tomorrow i didn’t think it takes so long but you know it doesn’t matter how long it takes it’s got to just get done so i’ll just keep working away until they’re all cleaned of their algae and then i can continue on with the moss cleaning moss away from the base of the trees and then eventually cleaning the whole landscape up and making it a little better so that’ll be coming in the future i made a small bit of progress on my larch forest today cleaning all that thick lycan off the branches and the trunks hopefully setting it up for maybe a bit of back budding and that’s all for today i’m nigel saunders thanks for joining me in the bonsai zone [Music]

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