Monday, October 29, 2007

Bonsai gnats

Gnats can be a common problem in plants kept indoors including bonsai. If you notice little flying bugs around your indoor plants and trees you probably have fungus gnats. Their young feed off the fungus in the soil. Hence the name, fungus gnats. They are a problem indoors because there are a lack of natural predators to control them and soil conditions indoors are more favorable for them. Learn how to get rid of gnats in your soil

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Saturday, October 27, 2007

Choosing the type of wire to train your bonsai

As a general rule, the thicker the branch, the thicker the wire it will require to hold it in place. Copper wire is stronger than aluminum wire of the same diameter. As a result, aluminum can be easier to work with, but you may need a thicker gauge wire to do the equivalent work that a lesser guage copper wire could accomplish. One advantage of a thicker gauge wire is that it has more surface area to distribute the pressure of the wire onto the bark with so it may bite into the trunk less than a thinner wire would. For bonsai wiring, the thinnest usable aluminum gauge would be 1mm and .5mm would be the lowest recommended copper gauge. Often times it is better to wire a branch using two wires in parallel than use a heavier gauge wire. More training and wiring information.

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Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Ginkgo biloba

Ginkgo biloba are a very ancient tree species and a living fossil-the oldest tree species known. The straight ash-gray trunk has cracks running down the bark. The branches are spreading and horizontal. Female trees have a wide crown with more deeply incised leaves, turning yellow a month later than those on the male tree. The light-green leaves turn golden yellow in autumn, and the Chinese have called it “tree of the forty gold crowns.” As a tree ages, it often grows aerial roots.

Learn more about ginkgo biloba.

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Monday, October 22, 2007

Concave Pruners

Concave pruners are, in most cases, the most used of all the tools in a bonsai artists arsenal. They are designed in such a way that promotes quick healing. However, most important is the fact that they allow the pruned area to heal flush with the bark--no bumps. As the name suggests, the pruned area leaves a concave region. When the tree forms a scab or callous it tends to be raised from the normal surface of the bark. The concave depression compensates for that which is one of the reasons why it heals flush. The concave cutter also promotes faster healing because of the shape of the cut it makes which tends to be taller than it is wide. Trees heal faster from the sides rather than top to bottom. Click here for concave pruners and branch cutters.

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Friday, October 5, 2007

Defoliating a bonsai tree

The art of bonsai attempts to grow full scale trees in miniature. One not only needs to make the size of the overall tree and branches smaller, but the leaves as well. Full scale leaves on an otherwise miniaturized tree tends to ruin the perspective. People who practice the art of bonsai use a process called defoliation as one of the techniques to produce smaller leaves on their bonsai trees.

Read the full article on bonsai tree defoliation

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Monday, October 1, 2007

Succulent watering tip

It is best to wait for the soil to completely dry out before watering again to avoid rot in succulents like mini-jade in lower lighting conditions.

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