Shopping for supplies

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Shopping for supplies

Post  Lynise on Wed Aug 21, 2013 6:58 am

It's me again. My tree needs to be repotted and I don't have bonsai supplies in my area so I will be internet shopping for a pot. Do you guys have any favorite sites that you like to get stuff from? Thanks.

Lynise
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Re: Shopping for supplies

Post  PeacefulAres on Wed Aug 21, 2013 8:25 am

I wouldn't waste your money on fancy pots and materials, especially if you're just starting. Any generic pot will work as long as it drains properly. And there are plenty of components suitable for bonsai which can be purchased on the cheap. Try to find a turface dealer in your area. Or, if you have a NAPA auto parts store in your area, they sell bags of a diatomaceous earth based floor absorbent which is great for bonsai. You'll want the stuff that is small pellet rather than a powder.

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Re: Shopping for supplies

Post  Todd Ellis on Wed Aug 21, 2013 1:24 pm

Hi Lynise,

If you only have a few trees you might want to buy some pre-mixed bonsai soil for potting. There are good deals on the Internet if you know where to look. Bonsai Outlet often has some good buys and they also include soil with some of there pots. I have seen their soil and it would probably be a "decent" soil for your climate.

http://www.bonsaioutlet.com/clearance/

Todd

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Re: Shopping for supplies

Post  Lynise on Wed Aug 21, 2013 5:34 pm

Thanks for the info. Ares, I'm assuming that the diatomaceous earth would be to mix into the soil or would it be a layer?

And Todd, thanks for the site. I am looking at some of the pots now. I will try and stay away from that blue glaze. Wink

Lynise
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Bonsai Supplies

Post  bonsaisr on Wed Aug 21, 2013 8:11 pm

This may help:
http://www.phoenixbonsai.com/PSources.html

Dallas Bonsai Garden has a good selection of pots. Shipping shouldn't be too prohibitive.
All soil ingredients are mixed together. Layering is an obsolete concept.
Iris

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Re: Shopping for supplies

Post  PeacefulAres on Wed Aug 21, 2013 9:02 pm

Lynise wrote:Thanks for the info. Ares, I'm assuming that the diatomaceous earth would be to mix into the soil or would it be a layer?

And Todd, thanks for the site. I am looking at some of the pots now. I will try and stay away from that blue glaze. Wink
For bonsai(or really any container gardening) you don't want to use what would normal be considered soil. By soil, I mean dirt. It's better to use either a purely inorganic material(such as turface/diatomite) or some mixture of an inorganic and an organic component, like composted pine bark. Personally, I've found the pure diatomite to be an extremely good growing medium. My plants seem to thrive in in.

This is just my 2 cents though. Other soil components may work better in your area.

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Re: Shopping for supplies

Post  JimLewis on Wed Aug 21, 2013 9:22 pm

Other soil components may work better in your area.
Yup. In dry, deserty Arizona, you will want to have quite a bit of organic material -- composted pine bark is good -- mixed in with the inorganic. Otherwise you will be watering 3-4 times a day in the summer.

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Re: Shopping for supplies

Post  PeacefulAres on Wed Aug 21, 2013 11:06 pm

JimLewis wrote:
Other soil components may work better in your area.
Yup. In dry, deserty Arizona, you will want to have quite a bit of organic material -- composted pine bark is good -- mixed in with the inorganic. Otherwise you will be watering 3-4 times a day in the summer.
Jim, during your time in Florida, did you find that your plants did better with a larger degree of organic material in your soil? I've been thinking about trying out some fairly organic mixes for my next round of collection.

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Re: Shopping for supplies

Post  Lynise on Thu Aug 22, 2013 12:15 am

I am lucky to live where it's just a little cooler and slightly higher elevation. This year was awesome and it rained everyday in July. We have several pines trees in our yard and those tall juniper bird apartments, all that drop mulch and needles. Would I be able to prepare this to use for soil? Also, I picked up a juniper at a nursery up the road this afternoon to be a bit of a project along with the ficus I got at the mall. Razz Sorry for not using latin names on all of these. Not totally sure what kind of juniper I have yet and I noticed the other night there was some debate over the type of ficus I was told I have. (Tiger Bark Ficus, seen it listed as ficus retusa but it was also listed under another name.) Also, my terminology is way off. I'll post a picture of the juniper in the appropriate part of the forum in a few minutes. Would cactus soil be decent for bonsai? Cactus don't like a lot of water and if I remember right, the cactus soil drain pretty well. Thanks again for the input. I need all the help I can get.

Lynise
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Re: Shopping for supplies

Post  prestontolbert on Thu Aug 22, 2013 1:13 am

I used to live in AZ and boy did I kill a lot of trees! You don't want to use pine needles or anything you pick up out from under a tree. For such a small amount of soil as we use in bonsai, you would be better off just buying some to start out. It would have saved a bunch of the trees I killed.

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Re: Shopping for supplies

Post  John Quinn on Thu Aug 22, 2013 2:20 am

I have had good service from Dallas Bonsai. http://www.dallasbonsai.com/

Too bad BonsaiMonk closed their online store.

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Re: Shopping for supplies

Post  Lynise on Thu Aug 22, 2013 2:36 am

I'm filling my cart at Dallas Bonsai now. Getting plastic pots for now. Not planning on showing these or anything and I'll get something more fancy later. I saw some pots I really liked at the Bonsai Outlet, but the shipping was more than the pot. Also, I'm getting a small bag of small grain bonsai soil mix. Should be enough to get this ficus repotted. And dangit, I'm looking at the little figurines and making plans for that juniper. It's big enough that once I put it in a bonsai pot next year, I should be able to have some fun with those. (Who doesn't like the figurines?) Smile

Lynise
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Shopping for Supplies

Post  bonsaisr on Thu Aug 22, 2013 2:52 am

It is always better to get the correct name of a plant so you can communicate with other growers. Yes, I believe you have a tiger bark fig. The correct name is Ficus microcarpa 'Kinmen.' Ficus retusa is not in cultivation. It is a widespread error.
Iris

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Re: Shopping for supplies

Post  Lynise on Thu Aug 22, 2013 2:57 am

Yep, shipping was only 4.95. And they are sending out 3 free packets of "bonsai seeds" with every order. They decided to clear them out for a while and instead of selling them, they're giving them away. Razz

Lynise
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Re: Shopping for supplies

Post  JimLewis on Thu Aug 22, 2013 12:10 pm

"Bonsai seeds!" I love it. No work needed. Plant them and -- Presto! -- a bonsai. <g>

Who doesn't like the figurines?
Lots of us, but many do, too. They're not really appropriate for a Japanese-style bonsai. But some of the Chinese schools use them frequently. IMO if not used very carefully, the become a bit tacky looking.

On your juniper, I can't really tell how large it is, but I bet it will be a LOT smaller when you find the bonsai inside it.

_________________
Jim Lewis - lewisjk@windstream.net - Western NC - People, when Columbus discovered this country, it was plumb full of nuts and berries. And I'm right here to tell you the berries are just about all gone. Uncle Dave Macon, old-time country musician

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Re: Shopping for supplies

Post  Lynise on Thu Aug 22, 2013 6:24 pm

Alright, I'll confess, I got a couple little figurines. I also have a four year old who has already decided that the juniper is her bonsai. Probably because most of them looked pretty decent and I was hot and tired of getting poked at and told her to pick one. I'll take a picture next to a tape measure later. For what I am used to seeing in the little store bought bonsais, the juniper is pretty big, but probably small to average for people who do it all the time. It's a nursery pot underneath it and I believe the one gallon size.

Lynise
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Re: Shopping for supplies

Post  Marco Giai-Coletti on Fri Aug 30, 2013 9:37 pm

My daughter, now 4, loves to decorate "her" bonsai with fairies!

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Re: Shopping for supplies

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