Urban yamadori Azalea

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Urban yamadori Azalea

Post  Poink88 on Tue Jun 26, 2012 4:07 am

I collected this today (06/25/2012) free via Craigslist. I think this is my best collected tree to date. It is destined to be destroyed tomorrow if no one takes it. For reference, the container is 16" x 21" wide.

I pray this survives.

Pardon the background mess, pic was taken just after potting.







Added 09/02/2012. This plant initially pushed lots of buds but due to heat (and low humidity?)...they stopped growing and some started to wilt. In desperation, I bagged the tree a month ago and the tree stabilized and the buds started growing again last week. Hope it continues this until (our late) fall.


As of 09/25/2012


As of 10/15/2012 most buds are similar to those shown above in size. cheers If it can survive this coming winter, I think this plant made it. Smile


Last edited by Poink88 on Mon Oct 15, 2012 3:00 pm; edited 3 times in total

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Re: Urban yamadori Azalea

Post  hometeamrocker on Tue Jun 26, 2012 4:47 am

Nice find... Did you bare root it? I was given a dwarf azalea today that is in heavy clay. I knocked some off but would like/need to do more, but didn't know if now was ok. Not trying to thread jack, thanks.

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Re: Urban yamadori Azalea

Post  Poink88 on Tue Jun 26, 2012 4:53 am

I washed most of the soil that I can off just because it is out anyway.

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Re: Urban yamadori Azalea

Post  hometeamrocker on Tue Jun 26, 2012 5:03 am

Very nice piece of material... Best of luck and keep us posted!

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Re: Urban yamadori Azalea

Post  JMcCoy on Tue Jun 26, 2012 5:30 am

WOW.. that's the largest azalea I've ever seen collected in this area! Our soil is so alkaline that most don't do well unless the owner was smart enough to heavily ammend or change out the soil before planting. Even with this, azaleas tend to just wither away over time, not developing that nice heavy base. From the remaining foliage it looks like one of the large-leafed & big flowering ones (maybe Judge Solomon?), which is fine since you have a large base to support the image. I have one of these from a nursery that I don't think will ever make a good enough Bonsai as the leaves & flowers are just too big for my small trunk. Really great find! It's so late in the season and so darned hot and dry right now.. I hope it survives well. Good of you to do the rescue in our 104+ temp today!

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Re: Urban yamadori Azalea

Post  luc tran on Tue Jun 26, 2012 5:45 am

How did you managed to find it on Craigslist?

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Re: Urban yamadori Azalea

Post  Poink88 on Tue Jun 26, 2012 12:30 pm

luc tran,
I just saw the ad in Craigslist (free section).

Joey,
I was afraid it will be something like that but that is okay. The bush was more than 4' tall x 5' wide x 4' deep and I was told by the workers that it could be 40+ years old based on what they heard. The original soil level is about 8"-10" above the current so I saw nothing but multiple sticks shooting out of the ground, I was actually disappointed at first. As I dig, it was like unwrapping a gift though. The soil is like humus top soil but a bit clayey also. I bet it is mostly leaves that worked as mulch over the years. It actually hit about 106 while I was collecting, good that this is under a huge tree but as luck will have it...I was right on the branch/foliage opening as I was digging...so I was under direct sunlight most of the time.

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Re: Urban yamadori Azalea

Post  Poink88 on Tue Jun 26, 2012 3:00 pm

IF this survives...

I am considering ground layering the 2 left branches (shown on the last pic) and possibly eliminating the middle front branch leaving the main tree with 2 trunks. I think it will make for a better tree.

Or ground layer the 3 older branches, remove the younger one and leave a single trunk tree...best shown on pic 2 (rotated about 30* to the left).

I'll take pics with the branches bagged later (or create a crude virt)

What do you think?


Last edited by Poink88 on Tue Jun 26, 2012 3:09 pm; edited 1 time in total

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Re: Urban yamadori Azalea

Post  Russell Coker on Tue Jun 26, 2012 3:02 pm


That leaf looks more like 'Mrs. G. G. Gerbing' (white) or 'George L. Tabor' (soft pink with a dark blotch), and those two always seem to make the best trunks of all the indicas. Win-win either way, and a really nice find.

It's a little late in the season - but sometimes we don't get the choice. You did exactly what I would have done.

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Re: Urban yamadori Azalea

Post  Glaucus on Tue Jun 26, 2012 3:06 pm

Americans call those southern indica's but wouldn't you agree some of them are actually Hirado azalea?

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Re: Urban yamadori Azalea

Post  Poink88 on Tue Jun 26, 2012 3:23 pm

Russell (and everyone else),

Thanks!

Any tips you can add to help this tree?

I actually added a thick layer or sphagnum moss over the base and the top of the soil and kept it under shade. You think putting a clear (or white) bag over this in the mean time will help? I know it will increase humidity but not sure if it is advisable.

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Re: Urban yamadori Azalea

Post  Russell Coker on Tue Jun 26, 2012 5:14 pm


Glaucus, I put that question to Maarten van der Giessen, my azalea grower friend. He said that the Hirados and the indicas do share some of the same genes (parents), but the hirados actually have bigger flowers and leaves than the Indicas, and are not as cold hardy. That really limits their wide scale introduction into the Southern azalea market here in the USA. Although he is only a 20 minute drive west from Mobile into the county he could not grow them without protection. It is possible that I could grow them here in town in my very protected garden, but nerds like me are a very small market. I'd try them if I could find them, I'll have to do some snooping around.

Dario, I think the sphagnum was a great idea - I was going to suggest you do that. Humidity is helpful, but I think I'd sit it in a protected site and pray. Wet the trunks every now and then, but don't over water it. They are really tough, I bet it's popping in no time.


Last edited by Russell Coker on Tue Jun 26, 2012 9:32 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : clarification)

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Re: Urban yamadori Azalea

Post  Poink88 on Tue Jun 26, 2012 7:29 pm

Thanks Russell,

Though I made sure I have 1" of pure turface at the bottom, I think tilting the pot a bit will encourage better drainage as well. The pot is now on top of an upside down soda crate to elevate it from the patio concrete floor.

Misting the trunk is a challenge, I can only do it mornings and evenings.

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Re: Urban yamadori Azalea

Post  marcus watts on Tue Jun 26, 2012 8:00 pm

hi Dario,
nice digging...the best trunk line i can see is this one, taper is perfect, scars will heal etc.



cheers Marcus

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Re: Urban yamadori Azalea

Post  Poink88 on Tue Jun 26, 2012 8:27 pm

Marcus,

I am assuming there is a virt attached...can't wait to get home to see it. Smile Thanks!!!

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Re: Urban yamadori Azalea

Post  Ryan on Tue Jun 26, 2012 9:39 pm

Aw, Marcus beat me to it. Oh well, here's my stab at it...


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Re: Urban yamadori Azalea

Post  Poink88 on Tue Jun 26, 2012 11:37 pm

Thanks Ryan and Marcus. I think both designs is in line with what I described (option 2) earlier.

This can be done but will have to wait and done in stages...maybe in 3 years? I would rather take it slowly but surely than risk losing the tree.

Just arrived home and I took a quick peek...it seems to be in good shape even though we are at 108*F today. Evil or Very Mad I sprayed the trunks/branches a bit but I am sure it will dry up in just a few minutes.

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Re: Urban yamadori Azalea

Post  marcus watts on Wed Jun 27, 2012 6:51 am

hi Dario,

i'm not so sure where you get the cut back in stages idea from?. The initial collection and cutting is the biggest stress, once you start chopping it makes absolutely no difference how much you chop off the top as you are not working with a conifer, in fact the more removed from this the better as you increase the root to trunk ratio. At the moment you have chopped off all the stubs very long - the two designs have the same trunks chopped off much lower (and sealed)-so there are the same number of cuts, just in the right places. This then directs new budding energy to the main trunk, where it is needed - yours will bud right up the long stubs that have to be chopped off again - wasted time and wasted tree energy.

Every major job done on a tree is another weakened growing season where it has to recover yet again, so correct initial planning can minimise the amount of 'chopping' years.- this approach would work very well on many of your multi stumped stumps - but you need a clear vision and plan for the finished tree from the start, until then I agree it is better to just sit and wait.

cheers Marcus

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Re: Urban yamadori Azalea

Post  marcus watts on Wed Jun 27, 2012 6:56 am

Ryan wrote:Aw, Marcus beat me to it. Oh well, here's my stab at it...


Haha, it just confirms the best trunk that is in the material Very Happy - azaleas look way too shrubby with multi trunks so finding a well tapered single line is the key.

cheers Marcus

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Re: Urban yamadori Azalea

Post  Poink88 on Wed Jun 27, 2012 12:37 pm

Marcus,

I agree that the most traumatic phase is the collection time. I also think this is the time the tree has the most stored energy and I would have done as you are suggesting if I've not read that older Azalea specimen do not like drastic chops (which I did) and could be prone to die back. I may be mistaken with my approach but I try to have other options in such eventuality. Note that this type of find may never happen again for me.

As mentioned, I also plan on layering (much later) the 2 or 3 older branches, thus the reference to 2-3 years. I think they are worth the trouble.

I am surprised that you think I left long stubs. Except for one, I thought I've been very brutal taking into account the possible bigger leaf & flower. There is also a younger trunk/branch that I kept temporarily for its foliage.

Hope I am making some sense, but if I am mistaken, please let me know. Hope some local (to my area) tree collectors chime in.

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Re: Urban yamadori Azalea

Post  Poink88 on Wed Jun 27, 2012 12:42 pm

Poink88 wrote:IF this survives...

I am considering ground layering the 2 left branches (shown on the last pic) and possibly eliminating the middle front branch leaving the main tree with 2 trunks. I think it will make for a better tree.

Or ground layer the 3 older branches, remove the younger one and leave a single trunk tree...best shown on pic 2 (rotated about 30* to the left).

I'll take pics with the branches bagged later (or create a crude virt)

What do you think?

marcus watts wrote:
Ryan wrote:Aw, Marcus beat me to it. Oh well, here's my stab at it...


Haha, it just confirms the best trunk that is in the material Very Happy - azaleas look way too shrubby with multi trunks so finding a well tapered single line is the key.

cheers Marcus

LOL, I have no virt but I've also seen that design earlier. Only reason why I included that pic actually Wink

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Re: Urban yamadori Azalea

Post  Russell Coker on Wed Jun 27, 2012 1:07 pm

Poink88 wrote:Marcus,

I agree that the most traumatic phase is the collection time. I also think this is the time the tree has the most stored energy and I would have done as you are suggesting if I've not read that older Azalea specimen do not like drastic chops (which I did) and could be prone to die back. I may be mistaken with my approach but I try to have other options in such eventuality. Note that this type of find may never happen again for me.

As mentioned, I also plan on layering (much later) the 2 or 3 older branches, thus the reference to 2-3 years. I think they are worth the trouble.

I am surprised that you think I left long stubs. Except for one, I thought I've been very brutal taking into account the possible bigger leaf & flower. There is also a younger trunk/branch that I kept temporarily for its foliage.

Hope I am making some sense, but if I am mistaken, please let me know. Hope some local (to my area) tree collectors chime in.


Yes, that's the right path. You need to be very careful removing large branches and trunks from an old azalea. It's a slow go or you end up with big dead areas in the trunk that will extend into the root system. Deadwood on an azalea is never a good thing.

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Re: Urban yamadori Azalea

Post  Poink88 on Wed Jun 27, 2012 2:21 pm

Russell Coker wrote:Yes, that's the right path. You need to be very careful removing large branches and trunks from an old azalea. It's a slow go or you end up with big dead areas in the trunk that will extend into the root system. Deadwood on an azalea is never a good thing.
Thanks Russell. This is consistent of what I've read.

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Re: Urban yamadori Azalea

Post  JMcCoy on Wed Jun 27, 2012 4:17 pm

Dario,
I think it's a good idea to keep it on the big side. Like you said, the leaves/flowers on these aren't satsuki and you'll need the space to spread the image. I'll always err on keeping more material if its a species that has unknowns or if it's a time of year that unexpected dieback is more likely. This is also how I would have cut it back if it were mine.

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Re: Urban yamadori Azalea

Post  Poink88 on Thu Jun 28, 2012 2:23 pm

Thanks Joey.

So far so good...no sign of wilting on any of the foliage even when we hit 109.

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Re: Urban yamadori Azalea

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