Training portulacaria afra

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Training portulacaria afra

Post  Stphilbert on Mon May 11, 2015 10:36 pm

can some one tell me how to promote branch division, I have cut the tip of the branches in the past thinking that it would help simulate latent bud on the remaining leaves but it didn't work, perhaps their is a special time when this needs to be done?

any help/guidance would be appreciated.

Thanks in advance.

C-

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Re: Training portulacaria afra

Post  Justin Hervey on Tue May 12, 2015 5:31 am

Hi C

You should have no problem getting these to branch in the direction of your choosing as the new shoots will push out from the base of both opposite leaves when clipped back.
Factors that may be influencing negatively:
Your Zone - These grow in hot, dry areas. Fast draining soil and don't over water.
Design cuts should be done when the tree is growing strongly.
Cutting should leave a small nib ahead of the last pair of leaves, too close and you may damage the area where the new buds would have pushed out.

Good luck

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Re: Training portulacaria afra

Post  kevin stoeveken on Tue May 12, 2015 12:39 pm

only thing i can add to justin's comments is in regards to your zone

i do very well with my spekboom (as they are known in their native afrikaans) and i live in wisconsin (zone 5),
so do not let that discourage you...

just do as justin suggests and try to simulate their natural environment (i.e lots of light and warmth)

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Training portulacaria afra

Post  Stphilbert on Wed May 13, 2015 7:55 pm

Thank you both for your recommendations.

The plant is by a south facing window in my office it has been doing great in this location for several years.

it is taking well to wire training, the basic branch structure is established although it is missing a back branch at mid level, can one be grafted on? I was thinking an approach graft?

C-

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Re: Training portulacaria afra

Post  kevin stoeveken on Wed May 13, 2015 8:26 pm

i cant help with grafting on these as i never saw the need...

with these, i wouldnt worry too much about traditional styling rules (i.e 1st branch, 2nd branch, back branch, etc)...
unless that is what you are into...

i think these look better with the basic shape dictated by the silhouette and then try to control how it fills in from there



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Re: Training portulacaria afra

Post  Khaimraj Seepersad on Sun May 17, 2015 10:38 am

My problem with the Elephant bush is if I cut past the leaves, new shoots are very unreliable.
Andre' in a p.m. said I shouldn't have a problem, but now I am faced with constantly expanding bonsai. Eek !!
HELP !!!

Laters.
Khaimraj

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Re: Training portulacaria afra

Post  kevin stoeveken on Sun May 17, 2015 2:21 pm

yes it is difficult to maintain a small one... i have been working on this one for about a year and i have been fortunate.

a shot when i repotted this spring:



and a recent minor restyling



it is about 3-4" tall

i think that spekboom is one of those trees that will do what it does and we can make suggestions to it, but exerting our will upon it and expecting it to listen is pure luck and chance with limited predictability.

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Re: Training portulacaria afra

Post  Khaimraj Seepersad on Mon May 18, 2015 12:46 pm

Kevin,

beautiful efforts !
I do wonder if you are going to have the same problem I am having.
Let me know what happens you try to keep them compact.
Laters.
Khaimraj

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Training portulacaria afra

Post  Stphilbert on Tue May 19, 2015 11:55 pm

Update from May 11th, I've cut the end leaves living a 2-3 mm nub, now the new leaves are coming out but they are in pair instead of fours for branches division!


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Re: Training portulacaria afra

Post  kevin stoeveken on Wed May 20, 2015 1:00 pm

yes - i believe these will always sprout in twos rather than fours

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Training portulacaria afra

Post  Stphilbert on Wed May 20, 2015 8:00 pm

so how do we achieve branch division (forking)?

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Re: Training portulacaria afra

Post  kevin stoeveken on Wed May 20, 2015 9:34 pm

2 becomes a fork
4 would become a clumpy lump that would need to be reduced to 2 anyways... Wink

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Training portulacaria afra

Post  Stphilbert on Thu May 21, 2015 12:03 am

I apologies, I am afraid I don't explain my self very well (English is not my first language)

It is becoming 2 leaves on opposite side of a single stem that continues to grow with intermittent leaves growing on either side.

I am asking the group if there is a special technic (time of the year etc..) that would let this single stem grow into two stems for ramification and pad development.

I know the late Jim Smith from Florida developed tremendous trees with luscious full pad, I would like to learn how to do that.

Thank you in advance for information on this subject.

C-

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Training portulacaria afra

Post  Stphilbert on Fri May 22, 2015 11:19 pm

Here are some bit of information I extracted from a text I fund written By Mister Robert J. Baran from Arizona.

“Removal of a large older leaf along an unbranched segment will stimulate a pair of new leaves to break at that node, and thus the start of branching from that point.”

“A knife cut made along the length of a stem across one or more nodes may result in a bud arising from one or more of those nodes at the site of the cut.”

I will test his recommendations and post the outcome.

C-

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Re: Training portulacaria afra

Post  Precarious on Sat May 23, 2015 1:33 pm

Stphilbert wrote:Here are some bit of information I extracted from a text I fund written By Mister Robert J. Baran from Arizona.

“Removal of a large older leaf along an unbranched segment will stimulate a pair of new leaves to break at that node, and thus the start of branching from that point.”

“A knife cut made along the length of a stem across one or more nodes may result in a bud arising from one or more of those nodes at the site of the cut.”

I will test his recommendations and post the outcome.

C-

Please do, that would be useful info indeed! Thx C!

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Re: Training portulacaria afra

Post  kevin stoeveken on Sat May 23, 2015 2:32 pm

ditto !

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Re: Training portulacaria afra

Post  Andre Beaurain on Thu May 28, 2015 1:59 pm

Khaimraj Seepersad wrote:My problem with the Elephant bush is if I cut past the leaves, new shoots are very unreliable.
Andre' in a p.m. said I shouldn't have a problem, but now I am faced with constantly expanding bonsai. Eek !!
HELP !!!

Laters.
Khaimraj

Huh?

Khaimraj my friend, the purpose of all plants is, ......... to expand...... like me and wisdom. hi hii i
Its you, that have to make the choice, of where the expansion must happen, not to end it. oooo that was deep.

Cut it back hard, like with the clip and grow method. They will always backbud, even on a stump.

Love and light
ps. hallo Kevin Wink


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Re: Training portulacaria afra

Post  kevin stoeveken on Thu May 28, 2015 5:02 pm

Andre Beaurain wrote:
ps. hallo Kevin   Wink

and howdy back to you my friend !
we miss your input both here and in the AAC !
i know you are busy and i hope all is going well with the new nursery etc...

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Re: Training portulacaria afra

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