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TOPIC: Starting a prebonsai from nursery stock

Starting a prebonsai from nursery stock 3 months 4 weeks ago #52225

Hello,
do you have any experience of starting a bonsai or prebonsai from a 2-3yo tree saplings?
I would like to purchase some trees suitable for bonsai such as maple or oak but from a non-specialized bonsai nursery.
What are the drawbacks? The proportions/ratio could be wrong?
Or it is better to buy a young starter tree from a bonsai nursery?
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Starting a prebonsai from nursery stock 3 months 4 weeks ago #52228

Main challenge is often that in the nursery they might grow for tall plants, whereas you want trees grown to be curvy with low branches. Also, the roots might need a lot of work.

That being said, I have done a couple of projects with young nursery stuff. Just be aware of the risks.
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Starting a prebonsai from nursery stock 3 months 4 weeks ago #52229

leatherback wrote: Main challenge is often that in the nursery they might grow for tall plants, whereas you want trees grown to be curvy with low branches. Also, the roots might need a lot of work.

That being said, I have done a couple of projects with young nursery stuff. Just be aware of the risks.

Ok, thanks. I will try.
I found a nursery selling 20-30cm high tree saplings. Hopefully the first branch is not too high.
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Starting a prebonsai from nursery stock 3 months 4 weeks ago #52236

I would not buy anything from mail order. I have before, and what comes is never quite satisfactory.

If I go to the local garden oriented nursery I would only buy if I found what I want. Best available does not mean good.
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Starting a prebonsai from nursery stock 3 months 3 weeks ago #52245

On the other hand, buying something inexpensive from a garden center to practice on with the understanding that it will never be great can be a good strategy when you are stating off. This can be especially true if you don't have a green thumb for potted plants, don't live near an actual bonsai nursery, are unsure what to look for in good-great starter material, are unsure how much you will love this new hobby or your budget is a little tight.

This is what I did and 4 years later I am ready to start spending significantly more money on unrefined stock. I just need to make some space on my benches for new friends.
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Starting a prebonsai from nursery stock 3 months 2 weeks ago #52409

Hi,
yes, going to the local nursery and choose the ideal saplings is the best way. I could not at this time and I received the two trees in the attached pic.
They are a scots pine and a common oak (quecus robust). I realized a under layer of gravels and a top soil by mixing 1:1 bonsai soil (westland) and coarse sand (RHS) with a small quantity of gravel/grits.
One pot maybe is to large.
I will keep them in partial shade until they are not full set in the new environment.
First task, keep them alive
second task: cutting back the trunk of the oak.

Any idea/suggestion/tip?
thanks
A

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Starting a prebonsai from nursery stock 3 months 2 weeks ago #52410

Antrox wrote: Any idea/suggestion/tip?


Yes. Wait a couple of years.
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Starting a prebonsai from nursery stock 3 months 2 weeks ago #52412

Auk wrote:

Antrox wrote: Any idea/suggestion/tip?


Yes. Wait a couple of years.


I second that
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Starting a prebonsai from nursery stock 3 months 2 weeks ago #52413

Yes, maybe 3-4 years for the oak.
I meant, do you cut back the trunk once a year or just leave it as it is for a couple of years?
I do not know how to keep it short in order to have the fist branch at the right height.
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Starting a prebonsai from nursery stock 3 months 2 weeks ago #52415

Antrox wrote: Yes, maybe 3-4 years for the oak.
I meant, do you cut back the trunk once a year or just leave it as it is for a couple of years?
I do not know how to keep it short in order to have the fist branch at the right height.


... how do you know the right height of the first branch If you don't know how tall the tree will be?
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