Watering a baobab tree

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Re: Watering a baobab tree

Post  redbeard on Wed May 29, 2013 5:14 am

Conny wrote:How is it with Baobab and air humidity? As mentioned I keep my Baobab inside my apartment, with unknown humidity level. I have an air humidifier that I plan to place next to my Baobab, to give it some moisture. Would this be a good or bad idea? Would the leaves enjoy it? Or could it harm my "tree" in any way?
In my experience, humidity doesn't have any enormous effect. My oldest baobab (from 2003) started life in Washington DC area - WAAAY too cold, of course, for outdoor overwintering, but it did perfectly well in the humid Summers. I gave this baobab to a neighbor when I moved away; after a year or two, he mailed it to me when I lived in Phoenix. It lived most of the year outdoors with virtually NO humidity. No big difference in the health of the plant... And now this lovely specimen of mine lives in Kentucky and still seems indifferent to humidity levels. When I bring it in for the Fall/Winter, it does tend to get spider mites as the humidity goes down, but this is when the leaves are falling off anyway (I don't water it in late Fall/Winter). I have yet to determine whether high humidity and cold conditions cause any problems... I suspect that's one combination you'd want to avoid.

As for light: Mine mostly just gets natural light now... when it was younger (ah, they grow up so fast, don't they?) I would put it under lights on a 12:12 schedule. How much of the year are you able to keep it outside?

As for the leaning: meh, looks like a healthy tree. As long as it doesn't get etiolated, it shouldn't need support. And it looks old enough that this isn't an ongoing concern. Hey, that baobab of yours could make an AWESOME bunjin... What a Face

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Re: Watering a baobab tree

Post  Conny on Wed May 29, 2013 8:33 am

redbeard wrote:As for light: Mine mostly just gets natural light now... when it was younger (ah, they grow up so fast, don't they?) I would put it under lights on a 12:12 schedule. How much of the year are you able to keep it outside?

As for the leaning: meh, looks like a healthy tree. As long as it doesn't get etiolated, it shouldn't need support. And it looks old enough that this isn't an ongoing concern. Hey, that baobab of yours could make an AWESOME bunjin... What a Face

Unfortunately I keep it inside all year round, I have no garden and no balcony. Also, I live in Sweden, would be tricky to keep it outdoors any time of year as warm nights (over 10C) is no guarantee here.

I have no bonsai-thoughts for my tree (just happened to find this forum and thread), I want it to grow big, as big as it can get indoors. It´s one year old (soon), and 70 cm tall right now.

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Re: Watering a baobab tree

Post  redbeard on Wed May 29, 2013 1:24 pm

Conny wrote:

Unfortunately I keep it inside all year round, I have no garden and no balcony. Also, I live in Sweden, would be tricky to keep it outdoors any time of year as warm nights (over 10C) is no guarantee here.
I have no bonsai-thoughts for my tree (just happened to find this forum and thread), I want it to grow big, as big as it can get indoors. It´s one year old (soon), and 70 cm tall right now.

I see. You want it big... If you want a big fat plant, you could try cutting it back severely every year or two and exposing a little more root each time... I've done that before and the result is a wonderfully chunky form. It sounds like you want it tall too... There may just be a limit to what can be done given your climate/conditions. I have grown (and killed Sad ) quite a few baobabs; what happens when I try to get them to maximum height is that during the Winter dry spell, the very tip top of the plant will dry up and die. The plant as a whole will be just fine, just the very tip is affected. Then when it starts growing and greening up, it will want to branch out a bit. From this point its rate of upward growth slows a bit. I suppose if you are able to maintain favorable growing conditions year-round, you may be able to prevent this.

As for keeping it outside: I have let mine remain outside a few times when it dropped below 50F, but I only did this in more recent years when the tree was large. I know of a baobab on the campus of the University of Arizona that has been able to withstand light snows... But this is a very large tree, planted in the ground.

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Re: Watering a baobab tree

Post  kauaibonsai on Thu May 30, 2013 8:01 am

sorry to jump in so late. was given 2 baobab last year. just repotted this one today in fast draining mix. water daily with everything else.

best wishes, sam


[/url[url=http://www.servimg.com/image_preview.php?i=2250&u=15061647]

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Re: Watering a baobab tree

Post  redbeard on Thu May 30, 2013 12:37 pm

Awesome, kauaibonsai!

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Re: Watering a baobab tree

Post  kauaibonsai on Fri May 31, 2013 8:14 am

sorry for yesterday's poor pictures. again with less background confusion. development just starting-two baobab bunjin-ji

best wishes, sam

[/url[url=http://www.servimg.com/image_preview.php?i=2252&u=15061647][/[url=http://www.servimg.com/image_preview.php?i=2254&u=15061647]

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Re: Watering a baobab tree

Post  Andre Beaurain on Fri May 31, 2013 9:22 am

Do you realize that your Baobab is an Adult!!!!

That is very rare indeed. For a Baobab to grow into an Adult when still in a pot, that is very strange.

Tell us immediately how you grew it. Was it in the ground first? When did you transplant it? Have you ever cut the roots? How old is it? What soil is it in? What do you feed it?

I mentioned earlier that Baobabs love small pots, look how small Sam's pot is...maybe that is the secret..... How long has it been in that pot.

I had a baobab in a very large pot. It matured into an Adult after many years, when I transplanted it, it went back into juvenile stage... so how did you do it?

Thanks for the better photos.

Love and light

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Re: Watering a baobab tree

Post  kauaibonsai on Sat Jun 01, 2013 8:24 am

hello andre

I can feel your excitement. I have no knowledge of baobab other than from reading your posts, but I will happily try to answer your questions as best as I can. I acquired the trees last year from a friend who was moving. she mentioned she had two baobab in 3 gallon plastic pots that I could have if I was willing to pick them up. otherwise, she was going to leave them in the yard for the next tenant to deal with. the trees were in a weed patch in the backyard. hadn't shoshana pointed them out, I wouldn't have found them. besides being choked with weeds, neither tree had any foliage. they looked dead. shoshana explained they they were dormant but would awaken come spring. I didn't think to ask her how old the trees were or how long they'd been in the plastic pots. I think she said she'd stuck seedlings into the pots years ago and basically forgot about them. the trees were planted in sticky clay soil which didn't look too promising. other than weeding the pots, I put them on the shelf and let them be. new growth appeared up and down the trunks. the leaves were 5 lobed which I know now, signifies an adult tree. about 5 months ago the trunks were wired and bent, unusable growth was eliminated and the trees left to recover. both responded with a flush of new growth , so within the last 2 days I repotted both trees. the root systems were very poor and weak looking resulting from a life in wet clay spoil. I removed the old soil, pruned dead roots and potted the trees in a fast draining mix of compost and cinders. they are in a shady spot recovering. too early to early to tell whether they'll grow-but they should, having been liberated from a life in near swamp like conditions.
hope this helps.

best wishes, sam

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Re: Watering a baobab tree

Post  Conny on Thu Jun 13, 2013 10:51 pm

Andre,

Last year you commented that my leaves were too big, due to lack of light. This year I´ve added light (cold and warm), but the leaves are on their way to get just as big again. What am I doing wrong?

Pic of today:

http://postimg.org/image/9sos5kdyf/

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Re: Watering a baobab tree

Post  Billy M. Rhodes on Fri Jun 14, 2013 1:39 am

Conny wrote:Andre,

Last year you commented that my leaves were too big, due to lack of light. This year I´ve added light (cold and warm), but the leaves are on their way to get just as big again. What am I doing wrong?

Pic of today:

http://postimg.org/image/9sos5kdyf/
 Indoor lighting such as you describe does not match sunlight.

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Re: Watering a baobab tree

Post  Down Under Jason on Fri Jun 14, 2013 9:05 am

Such a wealth of info in this thread! We've just hit winter here in australia (or just hitting it), and the leaves on my Boab are just starting to turn yellow, so from what I've read, its time to bring it and leave it until the buds start popping?

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Re: Watering a baobab tree

Post  Conny on Fri Jun 14, 2013 11:15 am

Billy M. Rhodes wrote:
 Indoor lighting such as you describe does not match sunlight.

I do realize that, but I assume its better than nothing? It grows like crazy so it cant be all bad :-)

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Hi all frien.

Post  tap pi lu on Sat Jun 22, 2013 3:21 am

My baobab. I cut off the tops, and after a week, well-developed buds. where I am in the middle of summer weather.

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Fertilizer

Post  Plantfever on Thu Jul 04, 2013 9:35 am

Dear friends,

I would like to use a fertilizer to improve growth of the baobab tree.  Is it good or not? At the mall I've seen some fertilizer, like small sticks, mostly for plants and flowers, will those do for trees in pots or would it be a bad idea? Any suggestions, tips of what fertilizer I should use?

Thanks

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Re: Watering a baobab tree

Post  Conny on Wed Jul 10, 2013 9:32 am

My baobab is growing out of my window size, and has reached my lamp... can I cut it some now in middle of summer or will that kill it?



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Baobab

Post  lennard on Wed Jul 10, 2013 10:54 am

Conny wrote:My baobab is growing out of my window size, and has reached my lamp... can I cut it some now in middle of summer or will that kill it?

There seems to be shoots lower down on the trunk. You can cut it there if you have to. Remember with less foliage after the cut, you can cut down on the watering too until the new shoots have grown out again.

If it is summer there you will not have any problems.

Lennard

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My Baobab Experience

Post  merman on Wed Jul 17, 2013 2:21 pm

Hi friends,

I found this forum today. I was looking for information online, if i could grow Baobabs in Cyprus outdoors or not.
Our climate is, rainy winters and very dry summers.

I have 3 baobabs, i planted 5 seeds last year in April.
I got 3 of them grown. Now 3 of them are approx. 14 months old.
They went dormant last year November (2012). And went out of dormancy at the end of May 2013. -nearly 7  months-
I gave them water till they had a little leaves left. Then stopped till May.
I was expecting them to wake up earlier as Cyprus has got warm climate. But as they were still indoors windows open, they didn't show a sign of fresh buds. Then i put them outside on the balcony, and gave tiny water to just damp the surface of the soil. And in a week or so, i saw green buds on one of them. Then other two too Smile


7 June 2012



10 June 2012



21 June 2012



8 Oct 2012





11 May 2013



20 May 2013



6 June 2013


16 June 2013

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Re: Watering a baobab tree

Post  Plantfever on Sun Aug 25, 2013 9:08 am

merman wrote:Hi friends,

I found this forum today. I was looking for information online, if i could grow Baobabs in Cyprus outdoors or not.
Our climate is, rainy winters and very dry summers.

I have 3 baobabs, i planted 5 seeds last year in April.
I got 3 of them grown. Now 3 of them are approx. 14 months old.
They went dormant last year November (2012). And went out of dormancy at the end of May 2013. -nearly 7  months-
I gave them water till they had a little leaves left. Then stopped till May.
I was expecting them to wake up earlier as Cyprus has got warm climate. But as they were still indoors windows open, they didn't show a sign of fresh buds. Then i put them outside on the balcony, and gave tiny water to just damp the surface of the soil. And in a week or so, i saw green buds on one of them. Then other two too Smile


Excellent share merman, thank you for your post. It is always interesting to see how baobabs grow around the world. I am fascinated that you've had them grown up so much during that short period. My baobab is perhaps 15 cm and that's all for this first year.

Take care.

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Re: Watering a baobab tree

Post  Plantfever on Wed Oct 30, 2013 12:01 pm

Dear friends,

I would like to have your opinion of how to go further with this baobab and when to stop water it. Since I have had it indoors a lot of time, I believe that the temperature has not decreased remarkable and therefore I do not know when to avoid watering because of winter season.

Here is a picture of how it does look now and has looked like this for weeks. Any signs that I should stop?

Thanks


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When to stop watering.

Post  lennard on Wed Oct 30, 2013 12:22 pm

It seems that the tree has stopped growing and next season's bud has formed. For me this would be a good sign to stop watering.

Lennard.

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Re: Watering a baobab tree

Post  Plantfever on Wed Oct 30, 2013 5:59 pm

lennard wrote:It seems that the tree has stopped growing and next season's bud has formed. For me this would be a good sign to stop watering.

Lennard.
Thanks Lennard for your reply. Very Happy May I ask how  you can see that next season's bud has formed?

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Re: Watering a baobab tree

Post  lennard on Wed Oct 30, 2013 6:35 pm

Plantfever wrote:May I ask how  you can see that next season's bud has formed?
On the inside of the last small leaf the bud is visible- looks like scales closing up each other.

It seems there are still juvenile leaves lower down - they will also shut down if you stop watering now.

Even for a Baobab as small as yours, there will be a big tuber below the soil. This tuber stores enough energy to carry your tree over to the next growing season.

These tubers are amazing! I have a removed tuber that is going into the 4th growing season now - it seems that the tuber is photosynthesizing on its own. There are even some new tubers on the old tuber. I have tried to graft some twigs on the tuber but my experiment failed. (The tuber is kept in my greenhouse.)

http://lennardsbonsaibeginnings.blogspot.com/2010_04_07_archive.html

Lennard

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Re: Watering a baobab tree

Post  Plantfever on Thu Oct 31, 2013 1:58 pm

Thank you Lennard for the help. I will stop watering now and hope that it will not be any complications with it. Hopefully it will wake up next season. Smile 

Thanks also for sharing the blog, very interesting reading and great pictures.

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Re: Watering a baobab tree

Post  Conny on Wed May 28, 2014 6:08 pm

Hello again


Well, my Baobab isn´ t feeling well this year, think I killed it last autumn... I kept it in my livingroom, so it didn´t drop all leafes until some weeks ago. We are soon in the middle of summer here, and there are only some few buds emerging, and they are doing it painfully slowCrying or Very sad During late winter/spring some branches have dried out, at some only the tops. I recently chopped some of the dried parts off, but it keeps drying further down the branches. I don´t know exactly what I did wrong last year, but is it ready for the bin? Maybe I watered too long last autumn and killed most roots?


Not much action here


Even less further down


This branch was a healty one last year, now it´s completely dried out.


/Conny

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Re: Watering a baobab tree

Post  Neli on Sun Jun 01, 2014 8:00 am

The biggest problem with baobab in your climate is over watering, or watering it when it is dormant.
I would not try to adapt it to southern hemisphere seasons, but grow it in your summer outside and make it sleep in winter, in a place where it will not freeze.
Some people here take out their baobabs from the soil when dormant and hang them up...
Mine are now in a hip on their side on top of each other...will not be watered until I see buds.
If the trunk goes mushy...soft you have problem of rot. Check the roots...if they are rotten cut of all damaged parts, dust with sulfur and replant...Hope for the best.
Dont water until you see some signs of life.

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Re: Watering a baobab tree

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