Scheflerra root over rock questions

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Scheflerra root over rock questions

Post  scottm on Tue Mar 23, 2010 3:15 pm

Hi. I am new to this forum but would like to become a contributing member. I've been interested in bonsai for a long time, but have only recently begun caring for any trees. I have a Scheflerra that I bought a little over 6 months ago and I have a few questions if someone would be willing to help me out.

Pitcures: http://bonsai.imgur.com/scheflerra

The first picture (close up of the rock) is from when I first got the tree, showing some of the lower branches that fell off soon after I got the tree home. The other two are recent. Here are the questions I have:

* How can I help stimulate growth lower on the tree? I'm hoping just pruning it will help.
* The dirt material the roots are in seems to be drying out more quickly and almost repels water (like any dirt if you water it a little and let it dry out over and over again). How can I add to it, or replace it to make sure it's holding water for a while, or does it matter?
* How short can I cut the tree without killing it?
* Should I trim the decorative roots if they are dry and brittle?
* Is there something I can do to remove the white deposits on the rock?
* Should I consider re-potting it without the rock?

Thanks for any suggestions!

scottm
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Re: Scheflerra root over rock questions

Post  JimLewis on Tue Mar 23, 2010 4:18 pm

I think I'd take it off the rock. Most root-over-rock trees try to imitate a tree growing in the rocks of the mountains. That's not the Sheffelera's natural habitat in the first place, and trees in the mountain rocks seldom have tall, arrow-straight trunks.

You tree should sprout off the trunk if it is topped. Shefflera tend to do that -- but it's always a risk. Heavy pruning may do as well.

You do NOT want your soil to be continuously wet. You also don't want it to be bone dry. Experience will lead you to the proper balance.

_________________
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: Scheflerra root over rock questions

Post  Joe Hatfield on Tue Mar 23, 2010 6:56 pm

I have seen these for sale recently here in Philadelphia. I think they look pretty neat over the rock but, if you want to take it out of the rock you have to be careful not to rip off the roots. I can't see from the pictures but if the roots go through the roots you will have to cut that Lava rock off or widen the hole to allow the roots to pass. I have been playing with a Sheffelera of mine own jot to much bigger then yours and I have noticed it will bud back (shoot new branches and leaves) without any real struggle. I have chopped off about half of the tree in the past with no real problems. I pot mine in regular potting soil mixed with some aquatic plant soil or any other small gritty soil i have laying around. My Sheffelera responds pretty well to misting but i don't know if its necessary. It seems like it was trying to put off some aerial roots which would be cool if I kept up with the misting on a regular basis.

The white stuff on your rocks is the result of using processed tap water. If its on the big rock you can get a wire brush and go at it. If its on the surround soil just replace it.
To prevent it from happening again you can use rain water collected in a container.

Hope that helped!

Regards,

Joe

Joe Hatfield
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Re: Scheflerra root over rock questions

Post  scottm on Tue Mar 23, 2010 7:05 pm

Thanks for the information. It's been living on my office desk, but I just recently built a small green house at home. I think I'm going to take it there for better care.

scottm
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Re: Scheflerra root over rock questions

Post  scottm on Tue Mar 23, 2010 9:07 pm

Any ideas of where to go in terms of style? Should I just top the tree and see what comes out?

scottm
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Re: Scheflerra root over rock questions

Post  Joe Hatfield on Tue Mar 23, 2010 9:17 pm

I think that Broom style is what you might end up with. Google image the term Schefflera Bonsai.

Joe Hatfield
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Re: Scheflerra root over rock questions

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