2 bonsai bought in Taiwan - need confirmation of identification

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2 bonsai bought in Taiwan - need confirmation of identification

Post  Morskate on Tue Sep 03, 2013 9:10 pm

This is my first post on this forum, but I gues you have to start somewhere :)I've read the guidelines concerning useable pictures for identification and I think the pictures I've taken will suffice. If they don't please tell me, it's no bother to take more.

While on a trip in Taiwan, me and my girlfriend visited one of Taipe's major flower markets. The largest table in the center of this large hall was reserved for bonsai of varying ages. We were impressed and decided to bring two small (and probably young) trees home with us. Since neither me nor my girlfriend has any experience with Bonsai we've decided on our bonsai based on looks. There was a huge language barrier so the advice we got from the seller was basically; take good care of it, don't water too much and if you want it to grow bigger get a bigger pot. Now that we're back home I've read a bit about Bonsai and have tried identifying the trees we've got by using Google, wikipedia and various sites. While I've come quite close to identifying some things are still quite 'off' so I would kindly request your help in confirming my conclusion. (or help me identify them correctly if I'm wrong.

The first tree I've identified as a Fukien Tea (or Ehretia micropylla) mainly due to the spots on the leaves and the color of the bark. But I also noticed some differences in the shape of the leaves so I cannot be a 100% sure of the species.


The second tree I've identified as a Tilia Cordata or small leaved lime due to its leave shape and some similar looking trees named like this on google images. But on most of the sites where I find tilia cordata trees discussed it looks quite different. So am I correct or is it a distand cousin or even something entirely different?
http://www.tiesmorskate.nl/forum_images/bonsai2.jpg

Obviously if my identification is correct the small leaved lime should be outside, and only the fukien tea can survive inside (outside seemed unwise since I live in the Netherlands where it gets quite cold). So I now have the first tree inside in a nice sunny position and the second tree outside on the balcony (we have no garden).

I hope someone can help me in identifying these trees and perhaps someone knows of specific guides / youtube movies / threads on this forum concerning my specific trees. I would appreciate any help.

Thanks so much

Morskate
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Re: 2 bonsai bought in Taiwan - need confirmation of identification

Post  Bonsaiteen on Wed Sep 04, 2013 5:15 am

All trees have various differences. If you were to classify a tree per every per different trait there would be millions of trees.

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Re: 2 bonsai bought in Taiwan - need confirmation of identification

Post  tap pi lu on Wed Sep 04, 2013 6:38 am

pic 1: phu kien tea. pic2: seems more like Hibiscus flowers.

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Re: 2 bonsai bought in Taiwan - need confirmation of identification

Post  Morskate on Wed Sep 04, 2013 8:40 am

Thanks to your suggestion of it being a Hibiscus I've found some images of the Hibiscus tiliaceus species that look similar to mine. Can others confirm this or have other suggestions?

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Re: 2 bonsai bought in Taiwan - need confirmation of identification

Post  fiona on Wed Sep 04, 2013 12:37 pm

Wait until it develops a bit more and see what fruits or flowers or other distinguishing features appear.

The moral of the story is don't buy anything if you don't know what it is (eg there is no clear label or other means of telling). People often underestimate its importance but as you've found out the hard way, a positive up front identification is needed if you are to have any chance of caring properly for your tree or indeed even to make that decision as to whether it is suitable for your climate before you purchase it. Isn't hindsight a wonderful thing? Wink 


But to move forward on a more practical note, both of those trees are a long way off being decent bonsai and you don't have much to work with on either. I'd put them into much bigger pots as your seller suggested and let them develop before doing anything to them.

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Re: 2 bonsai bought in Taiwan - need confirmation of identification

Post  JimLewis on Wed Sep 04, 2013 1:18 pm

Bonsaiteen wrote:All trees have various differences. If you were to classify a tree per every per different trait there would be millions of trees.
Well, there are trees and then there are trees. These differences between trees have, for us who do bonsai, important consequences. I don't know if there are "millions" of (different kinds) of trees, but there are at least many, many thousands of different species. And classification is how we tell them apart. A pine, for instance, isn't just a pine. There are 120 different species of pine and each is different from the other in many respects. If you do bonsai, it is important to know these differences; some pines make good bonsai and others don't.

It has been so long since my school days as a teen, I don't recall what is taught in high school biology classes, but if you are going to continue to work with bonsai, I suggest you learn about these differences.

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Re: 2 bonsai bought in Taiwan - need confirmation of identification

Post  fiona on Wed Sep 04, 2013 4:10 pm

You've also got a number of great bonsai guys on your doorstep in the Netherlands. Why not make contact with them by PM and ask their advice for what works well in your climate and what doesn't and take it from there. I'd start with Ed van der Reek and Hans van Meer. There are others as well - those were the two names that came to mind first.

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Re: 2 bonsai bought in Taiwan - need confirmation of identification

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