About Me

My photo
Portland, Oregon, United States
I have 15 formal Bonsai trees ranging from 5-25 yrs old which include conifers, deciduous', tropicals, and shrubs. i try and buy one of everything and i dig up whatever i can find. if you want to get into bonsai quickly, find the book call POP BONSAI by Lisa Tajima. go out and buy a little rosemary shrub, prune it down and expose the branches and you're on your way.

Sunday, August 8, 2010

i have too many ideas to post on this blog

this blog is sometimes hard to write. first because nobody reads it, second because i have too many random things going on in my head to write about. twitter will be slightly easier because i could dash one sentences down at a time instead of writing whatever comes to mind when i decide to write. i procrastinate a lot and for something that i just do for fun, it sometimes takes me a while to write new blog posts.

but i have some good ideas for my plants, and many useful tips.

1) don't buy decorative rocks at your nursery....if you do, wash them before you fill them into your pots. instead, go to your local pet store and buy the rocks you put in fish tanks. why? one, because they don't turn different colors or get dust in the dirt. but second, and most importantly, they're HEAVY. which means you can water your plants and the rocks wont float to the top and wash out of your pots. fish tank rocks are 100% safe and non-toxic, because after all, if a fish can survive the rocks in it's tank, so can your tree. i just went to a pet shop today and picked up a five pound bag of black fish tank rocks for $2.5 and they're great.

2) coffee filters make excellent strainers at the bottom of your pots. yes, there may be a lot of small particles collecting at the base of the pot, but if you cant find rocks for the bottom of your pots, or the ones you find are too small, use the coffee filter. better yet, place a coffee filter inside, THEN search for rocks to put at the bottom of the pots. (use fish tank rocks, duh)

3) before throwing any sort of container away, whether it be tupperware, old plastic boxes, random containers that take up space, stab a hole in them first. before you go through the trouble of building wooden boxes or buying fancy pots, take the tops of burnable CD cases, stab a hole, paint them a bright color, and your have a cheap and easy pot you can use until you find something better. take a old baseball or tennis ball, cut em up: cool pot. this world has an INSANE amount of useless plastic and we use far too much of it. all the packaging from new pairs of scissors that you buy to open the packaging to open packaging etc just gets thrown away. if you see the world like i do, i look for anything that can hold a small amount of dirt and i use it for a plant. why not?

4) if you have a plant that is root bound and it's in a plastic pot, wait before you replant it. instead, simply cut the bottom 1/3 of the pot off, pull some root strands down, and place that on top of a new pot full of dirt. press it in a bit and let your root bound tree now expand into the bottom of the new pot. you have to give it a few more years, or a few more growing seasons for this to work, but once you see that the bottom of the second pot is now root bound, you are ready. cut the top pot off, clear the roots of dirt and wash the roots, trim the small ones, leave the big ones etc. what you now have is a neagari tree (exposed roots.) you have allowed your tree to expand into a lower pot, making the roots in the upper pot its new "trunk" or multiple trunks.

5) and finally, 4 is an unlucky number in Japan because the word "four" and the phrase "go and die" sound the same. here is your 5th tip: explore your world. go out and find plants and make cuttings and experiment and don't worry about killing a few plants here and there and practice. its all about finding your own rhythm when it comes to plants. some people like to water theirs many times in one day, some people check them every few days. either way, find plants that work with your schedule. don't wuss out and buy a cactus because you don't have the discipline to water them. you can't do anything fun with a cactus, and there are so many interesting plants out there.


  1. I'm reading your blog! This entry was great and I learned a lot.

  2. Just found this and I'm now reading it too!