Ficus nebari development

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Ficus nebari development

Post  clint1982 on Mon Aug 10, 2009 11:50 am

G'day everyone, Im Clint from Australia. i recently acquired three small port jackson figs.[ficus rubiginosa] Just wondering if anyone has any tips or techniques on nebari devlopment I could use. Thanks

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Re: Ficus nebari development

Post  leonardo on Mon Aug 10, 2009 12:12 pm

If you ever get to Sydney mate look up Bonsai South, Leong Kwong is a ficus expert Clint.

ciao...Leonardo

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Ficus Nebari Development

Post  bonsaisr on Mon Aug 10, 2009 2:16 pm

I just acquired an otherwise very nice tiger bark fig that lacks nebari. It has already been potted, so this is for future development.
I am on the other side of the Globe from Sydney, so any information here would be welcome.
Iris Question

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Re: Ficus nebari development

Post  leonardo on Mon Aug 10, 2009 3:07 pm

I like to fire up all the boilers for max speed when growing for trunk size.
No clippers allowed on deck.
I use lots of perlite products and sizes for total control of the ship.
We sail in warm climates and big oceans for optimum growth potential.
Feed that boiler with all the food she can handle.
And may the bonsai gods be with you.

ciao.....Leonardo

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Ficus Nebari Development

Post  bonsaisr on Mon Aug 10, 2009 3:19 pm

I don't think we are talking about the same thing. I have no problem with the trunk size. It has a caliper of about 4 cm at the base. Nebari are the surface roots around the trunk. That is what this tree is lacking.
Iris

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Re: Ficus nebari development

Post  clint1982 on Tue Aug 11, 2009 11:21 am

Thanks Leonardo, I checked out the bonsai south web site very impressive, will have to check it out next time im in sydney. I do have to agree with bonsaisr though I was wondering about the surface roots. Do you think by letting the tree grow fast as you said with the trunk the surface roots will develope more?

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Re: Ficus nebari development

Post  leonardo on Tue Aug 11, 2009 2:09 pm

Trees try to grow like a tooth molar. So with ficus we cut the molar roots off, a derootation if you will if there was a word. Then you grow the spoke surface roots to make up for lower root formation removed. The younger the plant you start with, the better results as you could well imagine.

ciao.....Leonardo

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Re: Ficus nebari development

Post  Rob Kempinski on Wed Aug 12, 2009 2:41 am

Most Ficus will make a tuber-type root - like a fat potato eventually. So when the tuber develops you have to be ruthless and cut back and carve it. New roots will sprout at teh cut sites.

Ground layering works, so does root grafting. So does trimming all the bottom roots off the tree (cut it flat across with a saw), place it on a tile so the new roots have to grow outward and mound the soil around the future nebari site. I actually demonstrated the saw cutting in my book. Ficus are tough trees and can take this treatment - I wouldn't try it on all trees.

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Ficus Nebari Development

Post  bonsaisr on Wed Aug 12, 2009 3:06 am

Thank you. Although the tree is ten years old, it is new to me, and I think I pruned the roots drastically enough for now. I will repot it next year & see if I can encourage a new set of roots.
I have been meaning to ask you, why is your avatar a lawn sprinkler? One might think that your chief function in life is to run in circles, spouting in all directions. Doesn't sound like you.
You may have met my friend Jackie Kinney. She goes to Melbourne in the winter and has been to your club.
Iris

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Re: Ficus nebari development

Post  Jay Gaydosh on Wed Aug 12, 2009 11:47 pm

On all the Ficus I have I allow the plant to grow as it will. I develop the nebari by cutting off the walls of the growing pot to expose the roots, as I go further down the pot the web of roots begins to develop.

Below is a photo of one of my better "office plant/bonsai reduction" projects and the resulting nebari. (The original soil line was just above the top of the root mass.)

forbey


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Re: Ficus nebari development

Post  clint1982 on Fri Aug 14, 2009 10:14 am

Thanks for all the tips I guess I will try a different technique on each of my figs see which works best.

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Re: Ficus nebari development

Post  Rob Kempinski on Fri Aug 14, 2009 1:56 pm

clint1982 wrote:Thanks for all the tips I guess I will try a different technique on each of my figs see which works best.

Take a look at the posting I made on the bonsai forum called "Kracken Update." I used three nebari improvement techniques on that tree. Chopping the right hand root, grafting the middle root and ground layering the left hand side. (You may have to go to my blog to see the blow up photos of the roots.)

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ficus rooting

Post  moyogijohn on Sun Aug 16, 2009 2:46 am

Rob,iwant to know what feeds the tree when you saw the root system off??? is this a spring time thing to do where the tree can be outside..thanks john

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Re: Ficus nebari development

Post  Rob Kempinski on Mon Aug 17, 2009 2:21 pm

moyogijohn wrote:Rob,iwant to know what feeds the tree when you saw the root system off??? is this a spring time thing to do where the tree can be outside..thanks john

Good question. The tree can live off its stored sugar/nutrients and wastes no time making new roots. In a week or two it has the beginning of new roots feeding it. It in essence is a large cutting.

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Re: Ficus nebari development

Post  Rob Kempinski on Mon Aug 17, 2009 2:23 pm

Jay Gaydosh wrote:On all the Ficus I have I allow the plant to grow as it will. I develop the nebari by cutting off the walls of the growing pot to expose the roots, as I go further down the pot the web of roots begins to develop.

Below is a photo of one of my better "office plant/bonsai reduction" projects and the resulting nebari. (The original soil line was just above the top of the root mass.)

forbey

I think you are better off putting this in a tall Mexican pot and making an office plant. Either that or it will need serious work to ever be a decent bonsai and in your climate unlikely.

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