TOPIC: Mystery Plant!

Mystery Plant! 7 years 1 month ago #371

Hi all! I have a new pet project I'd like to share with you. My aunt Lucy has recently purchased a new house, and the yard has been neglected for several years. She's going to rip up everything back there and put down new sod, so before she had a chance I rushed over with shovel in hand. Most of it mom wouldn't let me keep, calling them, "weeds" and saying they'd take over the yard. (I should do a rant about that. Her definition of weeds is any plant that kills and forces out other plants. I should ask her if the willow saplings that pop up every year qualify. ) But one I would not back down on. It was around the front of the house, and I think it used to be a bush, but had been hacked down because it was near the water spigot. It was still alive, though, and when I tried to dig it up, very difficult to remove. I was amazed to find the tap root was bigger than the stem! I eventually had to cut it, but it's a very interesting plant with lots of character. I don't know what it is, though, so if anyone knows and has care tips, I would greatly appreciate them. The pictures are of the mystery plant after I potted it in a mix of sphagnum moss and the natural dirt out back and placed it in a partly shady area. It's right next to Phil, a mallsai and my first bonsai ever. I also dipped the broken tap root in rooting hormone, just to be safe. I (and aunt Lucy) live just south of Indianapolis, Indiana, so if anyone has seen this plant before, has care tips, or just knows something basic I'm doing wrong, please let me know! My first priority is this plant not dying. I'd like to be able to do a long progression of turning this scruffy, but interesting, plant into a beautiful bonsai.

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  • BassandBonsai
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Re: Mystery Plant! 7 years 1 month ago #383

I have no idea whatsoever! Sorry :)
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Re: Mystery Plant! 7 years 1 month ago #441

Hi,

Is this not a normal walnut sapling? For comparison: www.hainaultforest.co.uk/Walnut%20tree.JPG

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  • leatherback
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Re: Mystery Plant! 7 years 1 month ago #442

It looks quite similar, although I'll probably have to wait until it sprouts new leaves to be able to tell. It didn't like the ride over, and I've been at camp for the past week, so I don't know how my mom handled watering. Also I might need to switch the soil; it's not nearly porous enough for a bonsai mix, but I wanted something as close to what it was used to as possible. I hope to get some insight from my local bonsai club. Thanks for the info, though!
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Re: Mystery Plant! 7 years 1 month ago #446

As long as you are training it, I understand the soil is less important: You want the plant to get as much out of the soil as possible. I always keep plants I get which do not go into the garden in very firm soil, to provide nutrients & keep the roots moist. I suppose that bonsai stock can handle the same conditions as long as you are not training it.

As for it being a walnut: The damaged leaves are very fragrant. Rub a section betwen your fingers. Is het ana roma quite unique -I have never smelled a tree like it-.
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Re: Mystery Plant! 7 years 1 month ago #459

Hmm, I don't smell anything particularly special. Then again, the leaf I smelled was pretty withered, and it had just rained. Not that I've ever smelled a walnut leaf before. I think I'll wait, just doing the best I can to keep this poor thing alive. (Haha, my mom saw me go out back, and she's like, "it just rained! You can't possibly need to water them again!" I smiled at her and went out, and when she saw what I was doing her eyes about popped out of her head. It didn't help that my reply to her, "Why did you do that?" was, "Someone on the bonsai forum thought it'd be a good idea." ;P )
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Re: Mystery Plant! 7 years 1 month ago #486

Hahahaha :lol:

It's now crucial to keep it alive and then it's not so important to know what tree it is. It's an outdoor tree, just water it when the soil is dry and I think the tree wil survive this year :)
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Re: Mystery Plant! 7 years 1 month ago #488

Youri1995 wrote: Hahahaha :lol:

It's now crucial to keep it alive and then it's not so important to know what tree it is. It's an outdoor tree, just water it when the soil is dry and I think the tree wil survive this year :)


Sort of agree.. Naturally, what a plant needs to stay alive will be dependent of the species :D

But indeed: Keep moist, try to not place it in full afternoon sun, and keep out of the wind for a while, untill new growth is appearent. Then your plant will have reached a stable state again and will survive. Often it is beneficial to dig in the pot, to protect the root system from too much heat in the summer & keep a cooler root environment. At this point your plant needs TLC to recover from the 'maltreatment'

J
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Re: Mystery Plant! 7 years 1 month ago #546

Update time!!! I'm pleased to report that not all of the leaves have died, and while it hasn't sprouted new ones, the previous ones that are still there are nice and healthy.

Aunt Lucy had her yard professionally cleared. When she told the guy I'd taken some of the saplings from her back yard, he asked her, "Why would she want a stinkweed?" A google search has turned up nothing on what this might mean.

I asked the guys at the Indianapolis Bonsai Club how they handle damaged trees; they said not to worry, they wait 6-8 months before diagnosing a dead tree! I have hope for the tree I pulled out of dad's shrubs; even though it's been leafless for a month, I still have 5 in which the mulberry might bounce back!
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Re: Mystery Plant! 7 years 1 month ago #565

Good to hear that not all leaves are fallen off! I don't know anything about stinkweed, I'm sorry.

I hope it will be better soon! :)
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