Help with a Kumquat Bonsai

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Help with a Kumquat Bonsai

Post  Feymaker on Thu Jan 07, 2016 4:41 pm

I came back from my Thanksgiving break to find a kumquat bonsai on my desk.  My boss said it was a gift to the office and I was in charge of keeping it alive. It came from BonsaiBoy, I need help.  I've been trying to give it enough light I even purchased a daylight lamp to help since my co-workers won't open the blinds.  Our office is kept fairly warm and dry. When I touch below the gravel it feels slightly moist but not saturated.  I give it about a 1/2 to 3/4 of a cup of water every week.  I can't tell if I'm over watering it or under watering it.  When I came in this week and added water I had no drainage and if I do I immediately empty the overflow tray.  I would be grateful for any help.  I really don't want to be a plant killer. I'm posting two pictures the one in the plastic wrap is from day one the other is today.  I just noticed leaves curling.




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Re: Help with a Kumquat Bonsai

Post  JimLewis on Fri Jan 08, 2016 2:15 pm

"Nice" boss.  Get a new job. 

http://houseplants.about.com/od/Easy_Plants/p/Fortunella-how-To-Grow-Kumquats-Indoors.htm

I think yours is a variegated plant, which is too bad, but . . . http://www.indoorbonsaitrees.com/e1429.html

http://valavanisbonsaiblog.com/2013/09/

Good luck

_________________
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: Help with a Kumquat Bonsai

Post  MichaelS on Mon Jan 11, 2016 5:13 am

It has dried out very badly and will probably die. But try watering heavily (submerge the pot until the bubbles stop) once and then not again until it is **ALMOST**  dry again. If the leaves don't perk up in a day...throw it away.....

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Re: Help with a Kumquat Bonsai

Post  Andre Beaurain on Tue Jan 12, 2016 9:29 am

Hi Feymaker

I'm not sure that this is a kumquat, I think this is actually a variegated calamondin citrus. Kumquart has Orange egg shaped smaller fruit.

This tree needs the sun, its sulking because of the lack of it, and probably to wet me thinks. It wont survive indoors for long, lack of sun causes leaf mold, which your tree has got, me thinks.

Love and Light
Andre

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Re: Help with a Kumquat Bonsai

Post  BrendanR on Sun Jan 17, 2016 2:27 pm

The tree was heavily fruited when you got it. Producing fruit is extremely hard on a tree in a pot. If you want it to live you need to get it out of the office, into a greenhouse and properly watered.

I would not take it personally if it died - you had the odds stacked against you from the outset. The people who produce these for sale are extremely cynical. They know that most die within a few months of purchase, but they also know that most people will blame themselves or circumstances beyond their control when they die. No-one thinks it was a "built in" flaw. That's why they can keep on selling them despite their high mortality rate.

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Re: Help with a Kumquat Bonsai

Post  Leo Schordje on Mon Jan 18, 2016 5:55 pm

By the way

Citrus in general are slow to become good bonsai, but once you have 30 to 50 years of age on the tree, they become quite nice.

The others gave you good advice, though I would be slow to throw it away. Flooding the pot with water at the sink, let it drain, then return it to its tray is the best way to water it. Only water when a half inch to inch below the top of the soil it has dried to barely damp. Use your finger, its the best water meter ever invented. Dig finger into soil to past the fingernails, well into the mix and feel whether it is wet or dry. Notice the heft of the pot when you pick it up. Heavy, its still wet, dry it will be lighter. After you use your finger to "calibrate" your sense of heft, or weight of the pot, you will know just picking up the pot whether or not it needs water.

Good luck, this tree will need it. It might recover, but once it looses all its leaves chances are very low that it will recover.

But the advice you were given will help you with your next tree too.

They are definitely sun lovers.

Leo Schordje
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Re: Help with a Kumquat Bonsai

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