Mikawa Yatsubusa syling

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Mikawa Yatsubusa syling

Post  thatboy5454 on Fri Jul 13, 2012 4:35 am

i bought a Mikawa yatsubusa not to longago and im not sure if it needs styling before going into a bonsai pot or not. Im currently faced with leaving it as is and next growing season reducing the roots and putting it in its perminant pot. Any suggestiuons?











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Re: Mikawa Yatsubusa syling

Post  0soyoung on Fri Jul 13, 2012 5:56 am

thatboy5454 wrote:i bought a Mikawa yatsubusa not to longago and im not sure if it needs styling before going into a bonsai pot or not. Im currently faced with leaving it as is and next growing season reducing the roots and putting it in its perminant pot. Any suggestiuons?

Let's see. The nominal target for bonsai is that the height is about 6 times the trunk diameter. Your tree's diameter is about half and inch, so your bonsai tree ought to be about 3 inches tall. Japanese Maples are usually styled as a feminine tree, meaning that it is somewhat taller than 6:1, so maybe you have a 6 inch tall bonsai as things are. Now, think about those leaves on a 6 inch tall tree (I apologize for being presumptious, but they are big for a bonsai on that scale).

Continue thinking about that thru the rest of this season and thru the winter. During the winter also think about next spring. You could consider putting it in bonsai soil (I prefer inorganic, but you choose). You should also think about whether you just want to cut off the top and throw it away or maybe you want to air-layer it and have another tree to play with by the end of next season. If you choose the latter course (and I suggest that you do and that it is too late to do it this year), you will also be able to defoliate the tree BELOW the girdle at the same time and, therefore, pretty much know how much leaf reduction you will be able to achieve as well as producing a second tree.

If, by the end of next season you are pretty happy with your two little trees, you likely THEN can pot them into bonsai pots, sit back, and enjoy. If, on the other hand, this new data makes you want something more, you will be able to persue those desires/plans with two trees instead of one. I am not meaning to say that you would do identical things with each. You might want to plant one in your yard/garden, for example - they are beautiful landscape plants.




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Re: Mikawa Yatsubusa syling

Post  marcus watts on Fri Jul 13, 2012 7:13 am

hi,
initially i'll say i've had a mikawa yatsususa bonsai for about 14 years now and they behave quite differently from 'normal' acers. i wont reproduce the threads or pictures here but if you search the forum you'll find a quite interesting thread. - if you find the 1999 and 2011 pictures you'll see how slowly they grow.!

The above advice is ok for a very basic standard tree - ie setting a fixed height based on the trunk you have and the species........but I would never style a young tree to this regime (or any tree to be honest - its a very old fashioned and boring 'rule' ) .You are putting this material onto its first rung of the bonsai ladder, not making a finished image anyway.

Mikawa will retain large leaves all the time - even after total defoliation the leaves regrow the same size. the tree makes very short annual extension and is very top dominant. It makes very dense growth with multiple layers of leaves within millimeters of each other, so needs heavy thinning in the upper and outer sections or the tree looses all inner ramification. This thinning is the opposite of other acers - you must remove the 'under leaves' and keep the outer ones otherwise the tree does not grow any more that year. They bud back really well and respond to hard pruning but are very slow growers so take a long time to make into a good bonsai - but they are an unusual bonsai so well worth the effort.

As the leaves stay large the final tree needs to be large for it to look right - 24"+ finished height can just about balance the leaves - not a shohin tree !
As it grows slowly you dont want to cut anything off yet or you are setting the project back years.
The twigs that support the leaves are thicker than normal too - more reason for a large tree and not a little one.

I would grow the tree as fast as possible to a much larger size - either in the ground or in large pots - feed hard and minimal pruning. Remember the tree buds back everywhere so build the height and trunk first and concentrate on branches in a few years. If you are into small bonsai put this one in the garden or on a patio and enjoy it that way as it will not be pleasing as a small tree because of the big leaves in summer and thick stubby twigs in winter. Bud break is the one week you keep these trees for lime green shoots bursting from blood red buds with red flowers too.....it is a great display.

cheers Marcus


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Re: Mikawa Yatsubusa syling

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