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TOPIC: Newbie looking for advice - ultimate indoor bonsai

Newbie looking for advice - ultimate indoor bonsai 1 year 7 months ago #28728

It all started two weeks ago when a friend of mine showed me a miniature terrarium made by her... since I have rather big hands :) I can't do miniatures but wanted to build something green and pretty... and that is how the project began... didnt want one tree.. wanted more natural scenario with a Japanese house and a few bonsais mixed together... maybe a little river in the middle..
Went to Herrons bonsai near London and bought 2x sweet plum... 1x pepper and a chinese elm... Than right after started researching about light.. conditions etc...
Since I live in London there was not much hopes for good sun in my mini garden (subterranean). The only way for me is to grow it fully indoor...

Based on the research and tests in my house I've concluded following
1. I dont have enough light... = buy grow lights... so I bought 3x Sunblaster T5: 48"
2. Humidity with underfloor heating is rather poor.. 50% and can go quite dry... so I bought an ultrasonic frogger .. but for that I need more controlled environment (terrarium) so I dont end up with some black stains on my wall :)
3. To control humidity and trigger the frogger only sporadically when the value drops below certain level.. lets say 65% I've purchased humidity controller for reptile terrariums (long probe on a cable which can be installed inside)
4. Since it will be an enclosed terrarium I want it to be as self sufficient as possible... with that came Arduino... temperature/moisture sensor connected to a pump and programmed to shower the plants like normal rain would.. although the size of the drops I've reduced to more like a mist size... It can be switched to normal dripper...

I have no idea if the project will work... but so far I've noticed that all the trees started to shoot new leaves like crazy... both plums are covered with new growth... pepper also showing cute little branches... Chinese Elm had 2-3 days od dropping leaves when I moved it from the place below London to a complete different environment. but it stabilised ... I think it did...

Apologise for not being knowledgeable about bonsai .. Im more tech guy... and learning about the trees...

Ah forgot to say that moss is also healthy so far...

I need to landscape and think about ideas to make it look very natural... but it will be a longer process.. for now I want to finish the system and put plexi glass to test how the final environment will work... so far mist generator is working on short intervals as I dont have it sealed (ish)

Please advice and share what you think.. am I realistic thinking they will be healthy and strong? What is the correct value for humidity? should be always same or more like in the nature... more wet in the morning and less during the day.. .
Also been thinking to switch the lights intensity (1.. 2 and 3rd) emulating normal day intensity... 3 during mid day...

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Newbie looking for advice - ultimate indoor bonsai 1 year 7 months ago #28729

more recent photos

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Newbie looking for advice - ultimate indoor bonsai 1 year 7 months ago #28730

last for today... so far two weeks of hard labour :)

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Newbie looking for advice - ultimate indoor bonsai 1 year 7 months ago #28733

Bird Plum... not sweet plum :)
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Newbie looking for advice - ultimate indoor bonsai 1 year 7 months ago #28760

michaelpuk wrote: Bird Plum... not sweet plum :)

can you explain, the difference? please
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Newbie looking for advice - ultimate indoor bonsai 1 year 6 months ago #28783

now all you need is a fan to act like the wind.
A very brave project. I wish you success!!
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Newbie looking for advice - ultimate indoor bonsai 1 year 6 months ago #28787

Already put x super quiet 60mm fans which are distributing the fog .. its a lovely view to see the fog inside cumulating.. didnt cut all pelxi yet but got some pics...

Now buidling a real river from non toxic clay and rocks (slate).. will flow from back to front.. only 12 inches..

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Newbie looking for advice - ultimate indoor bonsai 8 months 1 week ago #36593

Its been a while since I posted the initial project... it evolved quite a lot since.. I must admit it was a great journey and I've learned a lot about bonsais.. I can say now with confidence that it is possible to grow bonsais indoor ;) 2 years and the trees are developing very well! growth is so rapid that I have to trim it every week or two..

At the moment I have a few Chinese elms.. and one unknown one which I picked up in pretty bad shape for free.
Whole thing is fully automated.. there are 6 circuits of water (filtered while watering from minerals and chemicals).. Sensors inform the pump to start quite precise amount of water every time I reach 15% moist. Each tree is feed separately.

At the moment I've removed moss as I want to change it to much nicer irish moss and miniature ferns.. soil moist is also fully controlled.

Occassionally.. mostly for visual effect I get frogger producing fog for a few minutes.. that gives that amazing and realistic feel of a real forest :)

On the side of the whole setup I've build 80L water tank which is hidden inside that japanese style unit (one of the pics).

All that gives me quite great joy! and satisfy my geeky nature :)

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Newbie looking for advice - ultimate indoor bonsai 8 months 1 week ago #36594

A few more

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Newbie looking for advice - ultimate indoor bonsai 8 months 1 week ago #36595

The species of trees you picked are definitely suited for an indoor environment, and I really hope your project works out. :)

I don't have much experience with plums or elms, I'm a newbie just like you :)
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