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TOPIC: Creating Bonsai from Nursery Stock?

Creating Bonsai from Nursery Stock? 1 year 2 months ago #33807

I'm new to bonsai so this may be too early for me to be thinking about this, but I really like the idea of creating my own bonsai from rough nursery stock

I have some plastic bonsai pots of a few sizes, basic tools and pre-mixed bonsai soil (although it's mixed for evergreens) so I imagine I have what's necessary, but I'm not sure about the time of year. Is June too late to be doing something like that? And do you recommend trying it, despite being a novice?

Also, I read that removing all of a tree's original soil can be detrimental to its health, but wouldn't leaving it hinder water drainage?

(Sorry if I'm being a nuisance with my constant questions, but I think it's better to know for sure than to fumble and fail)
  • Valkyrie2271
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Creating Bonsai from Nursery Stock? 1 year 2 months ago #33809

Valkyrie2271 wrote: I'm new to bonsai so this may be too early for me to be thinking about this, but I really like the idea of creating my own bonsai from rough nursery stock

I have some plastic bonsai pots of a few sizes, basic tools and pre-mixed bonsai soil


This is the first thing where you go wrong. When growing from nursery stock, you are not growing a bonsai. You are growing atree, from which you will create a pre-bonsai, from which you will grow a bonsai. If you want a decent bonsai, this is a process that takes many, many years.

Is June too late to be doing something like that? And do you recommend trying it, despite being a novice?


Depends on what you are planning to do. It is not the wrong time to acquire a future bonsai. It is the wrong time for many other things, like repotting and wiring.
It is OK to repot, if you are slip-potting into a larger pot, or if you are planting in full ground. But I do not really want to go into detail.

First and most important thing to learn is patience. There are movies on youtube, showing how a bonsai is created from raw material in a few hours. You will not be able to do that. The material that is worked on, often has been prepared for many years.

Choose your tree. Study it. Study it more. Then acquire it and leave it alone. Make plans, look at your tree. Reconsider, and look again. Creating a bonsai takes lots and lots of time - if you want to do it properly. Do not wire, prune, repot. Just leave the tree alone until it is growing strongly and vigorous. Working on a tree stresses it, you can only work on trees that are very healthy. You can always do things later. You can prune only once, re-growing a branch is much harder and takes lots of time.

Also, I read that removing all of a tree's original soil can be detrimental to its health, but wouldn't leaving it hinder water drainage?


Depends on the species. Some tolerate to be bare-rooted.
Conifers usually don.

Your questions are not annoying. I like your enthusiasm. However, I do not want to give a basic training, while there is so much information available - eve on this very website.

Start; studying, and practice patience.
The following user(s) said Thank You: yamasuri, Valkyrie2271
  • Auk
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Creating Bonsai from Nursery Stock? 1 year 2 months ago #33810

Auk wrote: Choose your tree. Study it. Study it more. Then acquire it and leave it alone. Make plans, look at your tree. Reconsider, and look again. Creating a bonsai takes lots and lots of time - if you want to do it properly. Do not wire, prune, repot. Just leave the tree alone until it is growing strongly and vigorous. Working on a tree stresses it, you can only work on trees that are very healthy. You can always do things later. You can prune only once, re-growing a branch is much harder and takes lots of time.

Start; studying, and practice patience.


Very sound advice Auk.
It should be a topic on its own, for beginners.
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