A little fall color

Here are a few shots of fall color…and an inadvertent study of blue pots.

A year in the life of a Ginkgo

Last year, I tried this Ino Shukuho pot for the ginkgo. It was significantly undersized, but I though I could make it work.

Here is is in winter 2021.

Repotted into this Sara Rayner pot in March 2022
Late May 2022
October 2022

Clearly the tree had a weak growing season. Really the only difference was the too-small pot used last year. It will be interesting to see if next year is stronger. I will not repot it in 2023 and hope for a strong recovery.

Fall color

After leaf drop, I cleaned up the tree, lightly pruning the few extension shoots.

Since this tree has been grown exclusively through clip and grow, pruning to outward-facing buds is important for the structure.
Additionally, some of the long and straight internodes are allowed to remain for fullness, but will eventually be replaced with other branches in the area with shorter internodes.
Moss, while pretty, needs to be removed from the trunk to prevent too much moisture retention.
Finally, a shot of the tree cleaned up and ready for winter.

Chinese Quince update

I bought this tree on eBay in 2006, and it is spent some time in the ground, had a few chops, and a few different fronts. But it is finally started to settle into its shape, and I decided to put it in our club’s annual show this year.

I have been bored with some of the trees lately, and less than inspired, so I thought it would be good to try to put a tree or two in the show that have never been shown before. A couple reasons, first, it adds some variety to the show. Second, it pushes me to advance different trees to a higher level. This year, the quince and the Stewartia will be making their debut appearances in a show.

I had already pruned it back a month ago, and sprayed it heavily several times with Mancozeb to stave off the rust. So far, knock on wood, it hasn’t been a problem this year.

The challenge is to balance the foliage so the viewer can see into the tree a little…appreciate the branching structure and exfoliating bark. But not so much that it looks plucked.

I started in the middle of the tree on the front and just started removing large leaves, and those growing downward. Hey, it works on junipers, so why not? Starting in the middle allows me to set a midpoint, where I can get more aggressive in higher, more dense areas, and go heavy on the lower, interior, weaker areas.

I also did just a little light pruning, shortening a few branches, and removing one on the lower right that was kind of bugging me, and distracted my eye from the first bend in the trunk.

After light pruning and some leaf removal.

Notice I shortened the lowest right branch too. The way it was hanging down before made the tree look a bit droopy, while the branching structure is decidedly perky. removing it made a big improvement in my eye. I actually appreciate the negative space, and can take in the lower trunk line better now.

I know the goal of bonsai is to produce the appearance of age, but some trees can look young and vigorous without being sticks in pots.

The final display, Heian Kouso pot, David Knittle stand, and erodium in an accent pot by Ron Heinen.

A close up shot of the nebari and exfoliating trunk:

One parting shot looking up into the tree. Branches have decent movement and taper for how this type of tree grows. Imagine with the next 15 years will bring…