Tag Archives: cutting

One way to create a bonsai

There are many ways to shape raw material into a bonsai. In this case the bonsai was created from a Ficus rubiginosa cutting. At first it was allowed to grow long and healthy in a large container. It was then chopped down to a short segment and it was allowed to grow for several years. Next stage is to select branches and apex.

In the last stages it was moved to a smaller container to develop secondary branches and reduce leaf size. This process has taken 7 years but can be accomplished in a shorter time if grown outdoors in a tropical or sub-tropical area and kept in a large container or the ground until the refinement stage of development.

Even raw materials can be transformed into nice bonsai with this sequence of development.

Large healthy cutting of Ficus rubiginosa has been grown with no trimming to develop trunk size

The plant was chopped back(reduction cut) and allowed to sprout out. 

All new growth is allowed to grow to regain vigor. Tree is kept in a large development pot and not a small bonsai container during this phase.

 

 

Seven years after starting the cutting was beginning its transition to a bonsai. Further development will involve more secondary branches and leaf size control. Pot is about 8′ long.                                                                                                                                   

 

The definitive reference work on Ficus for bonsai. The book is a softcover, 8 by 10 inch volume, with 144 color pages, containing detailed information for the beginner as well as the advanced hobbyist. Click here for more information

 

 

 

Creating a bonsai from a cutting

Taking cuttings is one of the best ways to start a bonsai tree. In this example a cutting of Ficus ‘Mystery’ was taken. It was a long straight piece of stem with several aerial roots. A cutting taken with aerial roots is almost guaranteed to root.

In this case the cutting rooted successfully and several years later the bonsai created was an attractive semi-cascade tree.

I take cuttings regularly and place them in bonsai soil and enclose the pot and cutting in a plastic bag to keep the humidity high. The bag is kept out of direct sunlight but in good bright light. Open the bat and water the soil as needed to keep the soil from getting dry but do not keep the soil totally full of water.

The bonsai created from section 4 of the photograph

The bonsai created from section 4 of the photograph below

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Section 4 with its aerial roots was taken as a cutting

 

Root cuttings

Some species of Ficus will grow from pieces of root. This is fortunate as repotting of figs is required every few years to maintain the health of the tree. At this time thick and unnecessary roots can be removed and rooted to form new plants.

A root cutting is shown from a Willow Leaf fig. The bonsai is now about 10 years old.

Willow Leaf fig from the root cutting removed 10 years ago

Willow Leaf fig from the root cutting removed 10 years ago

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This root cutting was removed from a bonsai tree and grew into the above tree


The definitive reference work on Ficus
for bonsai. The book is a softcover, 8 by 10 inch volume, with 144 color pages, containing detailed information for the beginner as well as the advanced hobbyist.
 Click here for more information

Ficus ‘Mystery’, piece 4

Ficus ‘Mystery’ is an unknown fig given to me in 2004 by friend David Fukumoto of Fuku-Bonsai.

The first shot shows one of the pieces of the tree that was initially sectioned into 5 pieces.

The second shot shows the piece #4 in 2014.

Ficus 'Mystery' as part of a larger plant, 2004

Ficus ‘Mystery’ as part of a larger plant, 2004

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Piece #4, 2014

This material is vigorous and aggressive and shapes up into beautiful bonsai. I would recommend it highly to anyone growing figs as bonsai.

See http://www.bonsaihunk.us/public_html/?p=125 for more about Ficus ‘Mystery’.

Splitting a fig into two future bonsai trees

Sometimes splitting a fig into several parts is the way to go with initial styling to maximize the material’s potential.

The pant is a Ficus natalensis grown from a root cutting and perhaps two years old. The only exciting thing about it is the twisting lower trunk which should make a nice tree using that as the focal point for the future bonsai.

An appropriate spot was chosen to split the tree into two sections. This point was selected since it would leave the top section with a good aerial root to keep it alive. This section will live happily on this one root until it is time to give it a styling.

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The start

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Close up of the top section of the plant

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The two sections are now split apart leaving the top part with a good root to carry it

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The top section planted using its one root

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The bottom section potted and several branches remain to form the future of this bonsai

The final design is not done but this is just the initial blocking out of the future bonsai. Consider breaking up a tree when the parts are more exciting  than the original tree left intact.


The definitive reference work on Ficus
for bonsai. The book is a softcover, 8 by 10 inch volume, with 144 color pages, containing detailed information for the beginner as well as the advanced hobbyist.
 Click here for more information