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Tiki Central Forums Beyond Tiki Is anybody here into bonsai trees?
Is anybody here into bonsai trees?
finkdaddy
Tiki Socialite

Joined: May 11, 2004
Posts: 2061
From: Wisconsin
Posted: 2006-01-21 08:47 am   Permalink

I've been reading up on how to grow them for a while now because I wanted to have one or two in the Leeward Lounge. Then yesterday, on the anniversary of our first date (yeah, I know, I know), my wife had one delivered to my work with a mushy card (isn't she sweet? ). So now I'm the proud owner of a miniature Hawaiian Umbrella tree. I was hoping that someone here grew bonsai so I could ask some questions about specific techniques.

Mahalo!
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purple jade
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Feb 19, 2003
Posts: 1450
From: New Orleans
Posted: 2006-01-21 09:10 am   Permalink

My husband and I can give you all sorts of tips on killing them...we seem to be experts at it.

One thing I know is that the amount of water they get is critical.
Too much or too little and it makes all the difference.
I think a mister is good for bonsai, but I'm not certain.
And don't bring it inside.
It's small but it is a tree and they don't like the indoor light.
They need real sunshine.

My brother-in-law is great with them, I can see what he has to say.


 
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finkdaddy
Tiki Socialite

Joined: May 11, 2004
Posts: 2061
From: Wisconsin
Posted: 2006-01-21 09:26 am   Permalink

Thank you Purple Jade, advice from anyone would be great. There is 5 inches of snow on the ground, so growing a Hawaiian Umbrella tree outside is not likely. I'm buying a grow light today, and when the weather turns warmer, I'll put it outside. There is a bonsai club in Milwaukee, but I don't know that I want to get that involved.

I guess my specific question is I want to grow a banyan-style root system, but I can't find any instruction on how it's done.

Mahalo!
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TikiJosh
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Feb 01, 2005
Posts: 735
Posted: 2006-01-21 11:15 am   Permalink

wow, that sounds like a heck of an undertaking. I had a bonsai for a while, and PJ is absolutely right. I over-watered mine, at least I think I did, and it went dead. It was super cool while it lasted. I would also advise that if you intend to trim it, don't overdo it. It's not a rosebush that needs to be cut back every year to the stems, just nip a twig here and there. Better yet, think about it for a week, and if a little snip is really needed, then go for it. You don't want to get overzealous with the scissors, otherwise you'll just have a bonsai stick.
I don't know much about umbrella trees, so I can't give you much specific advice. Your local bonsai club may not even know much about them, but if you can't find any info on the internet, they might be your best resource. I'm not sure I know what you mean by a banyan style root system. Do you want the roots above the ground, with multiple trunks coming out of it? Generally roots will come up to the surface when the plant gets "shallow" watering, as opposed to deep watering. I don't know that I'd try something like that as PJ's comment about water is spot on. The amount of water is definitely important! Tweaking it to make the roots grow a certain way may stress it, and these little guys do not handle stress well.
Well, best of luck!

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finkdaddy
Tiki Socialite

Joined: May 11, 2004
Posts: 2061
From: Wisconsin
Posted: 2006-01-21 12:28 pm   Permalink

Quote:

On 2006-01-21 11:15, TikiJosh wrote:
I'm not sure I know what you mean by a banyan style root system.



Here is a picture of the one I just got (being watched over by my son Brendan).


Here is a pic of the same type of tree (a Hawaiian Umbrella tree) with the aerial root system I'd like to have on mine someday.

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Humuhumu
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Aug 22, 2002
Posts: 3612
From: San Francisco
Posted: 2006-01-21 12:37 pm   Permalink

I don't know much about bonsai trees, and even less about Hawaiian umbrella trees, but I wanted to say happy anniversary! It's very sweet that her gift means so much to you.

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finkdaddy
Tiki Socialite

Joined: May 11, 2004
Posts: 2061
From: Wisconsin
Posted: 2006-01-21 12:55 pm   Permalink

Thank you Humuhumu, you always make me smile. My wife could give me a rock and I would cherish it. Her and our kids are my world. Tonight we're going out to a nice Japanese restaurant for sushi (which is what we did on our first date) with the couple next door (Mr Predicta on TC and his wife), then we're coming back here to officially open the Leeward Lounge to the public. I know I've said this before, but please, if you ever find yourself in the area, spend an evening with us.
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