willow leaf ficus

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willow leaf ficus

Post  moyogijohn on Sun Dec 19, 2010 1:09 am

I have found myself a willow leaf ficus..i checked jim lewis trees when he had them posted and really liked the way they looked...now i need to know how to thicken the trunk the best way...now the tree is 10 inches high the trunk a little over 3/4 inches wide 2 inches above the soil....thank you very much take care john

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Willow leaf fig

Post  bonsaisr on Sun Dec 19, 2010 3:09 am

Sorry, from my experience this one is not for the zone envious. What you've got is what you've got. Over time, the trunk may thicken some, but you won't get the kind of trunk thickening you will get in the tropics, or from planting a maple in the ground.
Ficus salicaria is from the jungles of Guyana (as far as we know). It thrives on heat, humidity, & sunlight. I have not gotten much cooperation from it, even in the summer. It sits around under the fluorescent lights all winter & does practically nothing. I am trying my two little shohin willow-leafs in a baggie & a terrarium to see whether increased humidity will help. Post a picture & maybe you will get some suggestions. Your trunk thickness is not that bad for a shohin. Work on arranging the branches & keeping it pinched.
Iris

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willow leaf ficus

Post  moyogijohn on Sun Dec 19, 2010 1:34 pm

Thank you Mrs Iris,,If i have to settle with the trunk so be it...I will try and get a good canopy..what about wireing branches to get a good branch placement???? take care john

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Re: willow leaf ficus

Post  JimLewis on Sun Dec 19, 2010 1:58 pm

Unless you invest in a fancy greenhouse, exhaust fans, heat, and the linke I'm afraid that you're stuck with what you have.

Those trees you admired (and thanks) came from Jim Smith's nursery in Vero Beach Florida and had been grown outdoors for a number of years before i picked them up at a BSF meeting in Cape Canaveral in the spring of 2004. They've done very little in the way of growing fatter since then.

When I got it:



Shortly after the workshop:



Today (or last summer -- it's inside now and as usual, isn't happy):


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Re: willow leaf ficus

Post  Guest on Sun Dec 19, 2010 2:02 pm

Hi John,
a photo would really help.
If it's in a small container I would suggest you plant it first in a deeper growing pot to thicken the trunk. With some ficus, I also fused several trunks to have a bigger single trunk, much faster than letting the tree on its own to acquire a sizable girth. most of the times the fused trunk gets more dramatic and older effect than a single trunk alone.

regards,
jun Smile

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willow leaf ficus

Post  moyogijohn on Sun Dec 19, 2010 2:17 pm

Thank you Jim and Jun,, I Knew where your trees came from...what i didn,t know is that you made such a drastic chop on them!!! i will try and post a picture soon..take care john

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Re: willow leaf ficus

Post  JimLewis on Sun Dec 19, 2010 2:17 pm

Jun, in the snowy mountains of West Virginia USA, that's a difficult option. In winter, without a tropical-temperature greenhouse, figs just do NOT grow.

You people down near the equator need to remember that most of us live in vastly different climates than you do.

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Re: willow leaf ficus

Post  JimLewis on Sun Dec 19, 2010 2:19 pm

what i didn,t know is that you made such a drastic chop on them!!
!

I left those 8 leaves only because I couldn't stand to have a tree with NO foliage. <g> Everyone else in he workshop totally denuded their trees.

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Re: willow leaf ficus

Post  John Romano on Sun Dec 19, 2010 2:26 pm

John,
I have to disagree with Iris. I live in New England and am _not_ a big fan of tropicals but find the ficus salicaria one of the few that I thoroughly enjoy working with. It is one of the few species that increase nebari size / lower trunk girth in a pot without having to grow them out in the ground. I've been developing shohin ficus salicaria up here for over 10 years and find them one of the best materials for us to use in colder climates. That being said, they drag through winter like most tropicals but can grow quite fast in the warmer weather once outside. I also defoliate them once or twice in the summer and wiring is no problem. I'm on a new computer and don't have my old photo's available but will try to get to them sometime today and post a couple of pictures.
Good luck,
John Romano

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Re: willow leaf ficus

Post  Guest on Sun Dec 19, 2010 2:32 pm

JimLewis wrote:Jun, in the snowy mountains of West Virginia USA, that's a difficult option. In winter, without a tropical-temperature greenhouse, figs just do NOT grow.

You people down near the equator need to remember that most of us live in vastly different climates than you do.


I know that for a FACT Jim. where ever you are there will still have some growth on your tree as long as it is alive. and fusing the tree together will still be possible, the only difference between you people up the equator is that it will take longer time for your trees than our trees to develop, but it will still fused together and will have a faster result than waiting forever to gain some girth on your ficus. plus the more tree you fused the wider the nebari flare will be... it's an option for somebody who's willing take the risk... not necessarily you Jim or John but someone with different approach on their trees and someone willing to accept and explore new solution to old problems. If it succeed you can have a new solution to your climate problem on some tropical tree.

regards,
jun


Last edited by jun on Sun Dec 19, 2010 2:42 pm; edited 1 time in total

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Re: willow leaf ficus

Post  Guest on Sun Dec 19, 2010 2:36 pm

John Romano wrote:John,
I have to disagree with Iris. I live in New England and am _not_ a big fan of tropicals but find the ficus salicaria one of the few that I thoroughly enjoy working with. It is one of the few species that increase nebari size / lower trunk girth in a pot without having to grow them out in the ground. I've been developing shohin ficus salicaria up here for over 10 years and find them one of the best materials for us to use in colder climates. That being said, they drag through winter like most tropicals but can grow quite fast in the warmer weather once outside. I also defoliate them once or twice in the summer and wiring is no problem. I'm on a new computer and don't have my old photo's available but will try to get to them sometime today and post a couple of pictures.
Good luck,
John Romano

That's what I'm TALKING about Jim. See it means most people in the upper part of the equator knows something else.

regards,
jun


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willow leaf ficus

Post  moyogijohn on Sun Dec 19, 2010 3:31 pm

MY THANKS Go to all of you for your information and insite... thanks for all pictures,i just like to look at everyones trees..i may not be able to accomplish what you all have but i can look at great trees and still work with what i have with everyones input..thanks for your post..take care john

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Re: willow leaf ficus

Post  DreadyKGB on Sun Dec 19, 2010 3:45 pm

John,
You should look over Bonsaikc's blog. He has a good progression for a ficus microcarpa in the northern climates. The techniques would work the same for the salicaria. He uses a clear plastic dry cleaning bag to create a humidity tent during the winter. If you look at the progression the higher humidity has had a great effect over a couple years when he first started using it as opposed to the little size gain over the first few years he had the tree. I am using the same technique but I have created a frame for the tent by bending wire coat hangers, this way the leaves don't touch the plastic. Here's the link: http://bonsaikc.com/2010/11/23/ficus-microcarpa/

Todd

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Re: willow leaf ficus

Post  Khaimraj Seepersad on Sun Dec 19, 2010 3:58 pm

Jim,

just wanted to say thank you for the inspiring images. After reading Rob's book I went out and bought a nursery cast-off, did both the major chop and repot. Sure enough I got the multiple bud to become branches effect. This also proved that the local willow fig trees, growing as weeds, are not the same plant. They don't re-sprout like that ficus does.

I hope my effort turns out as well as your own did.
Thanks again.
Khaimraj

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willow leaf ficus

Post  moyogijohn on Sun Dec 19, 2010 4:40 pm

TODD,,Thank you for the link,,i think i need more humidity on these trees ..i can work on that...take care john

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Re: willow leaf ficus

Post  JimLewis on Sun Dec 19, 2010 5:09 pm

That's what I'm TALKING about Jim. See it means most people in the upper part of the equator knows something else.

Ahhhh, Jun, Jun, Jun . . . .

John Romano is a legitimate expert grower of bonsai. Myogijohn, though he is learning, is not -- yet. He may succeed at nursing a fig's growth as john R. suggests, or he may not, since it would take several carefully managed years to know.

Believe it or not, I also tend to know what I'm saying (or I don't bother saying it) and have been doing bonsai (I suspect) longer than you have been alive -- tho maybe not, since I've never met or seen a picture of you. I also, perhaps surprisingly, have lived in the Philippines -- though it was SOME years ago -- and in other tropical and semi-tropical lands such as Hong Kong, Hawaii, and south Florida. Still, I seldom give cultural advice to people who grow tropical trees -- especially if they grow them in the tropics!

I think you should at least caveat your horticultural/cultural advice to those who live where it can get COLD for a significant amount of time with the fact that your bonsai experience is in the tropics, where trees grow a lot differently than they do up here -- faster, too. This is not to say that you shouldn't encourage people to try new and different things. Just warn them.

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Willow leaf fig

Post  bonsaisr on Sun Dec 19, 2010 8:20 pm

A couple of warnings for John (from the 43rd Parallel pale ). If you are keeping your F. salicaria on a windowsill for the winter, even with added humidity, don't panic if the leaves fall off. It is just dormant. Treat it like any dormant deciduous tree, reduced water, no food, etc. In the spring it will grow new leaves.
A peculiarity I have observed in the North is that this species tends to have weak apical dominance. If you don't stay with it, the top tends to die off and it grows many new side branches. They tell me it doesn't happen in the tropics.
Iris

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willow leaf ficus

Post  moyogijohn on Sun Dec 19, 2010 9:55 pm

Thank you Mrs.Iris for your comment...Jim is right ,i have 1/10th of the knowledge that you all have..that is the reason i talk to everyone..like i have said befor,,my trees are for my injoyment not show worthy at all.Jun,Jim,You,,well everyone gives encourgement and their knowledge to me and every body else.this is why i come to this site with a plus to see some very good bonsai...thank you all take care john

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Re: willow leaf ficus

Post  Guest on Sun Dec 19, 2010 10:14 pm

My advice to you John if you won't mind, is to get as many insight as possible, then filter them out one by one. pick which one works well, probably not my general advice or Jim's, but coming from someone who has the most working positive solution and has the best results on their trees, that you would need. and that's the essence of this forum.

regards,
jun Smile




Jim,

You spent time here in the Philippines? nice
...I wish I can spend lot of time in your region, several growing season, not just a few months of stay in Canada, NYC (I spent more than a month in manhattan with my brother working there and be back again next year, I hope I can find time visiting some IBC members specially you so that you'll know I am really me with right the 'age' stated here and have a chitchat and tea with you) and some other other places in the colder region so that I can get my hands on some trees for several growing season, I love solving challenges.

regards,
jun

Smile


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Re: willow leaf ficus

Post  Khaimraj Seepersad on Sun Dec 19, 2010 10:32 pm

Jun, get a refrigerator works wonders. Or build a solar powered cold room, just a concrete room on the eastern side of a hill, with a fan to simulate wind. Sounds familiar, will let you know when I am finished mine.

By the way the house I have at the sea is solar powered and home here is having all the ceiling lights done for solar power. Green living.
Khaimraj

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Re: willow leaf ficus

Post  Guest on Sun Dec 19, 2010 10:41 pm

Khaimraj Seepersad wrote:Jun, get a refrigerator works wonders. Or build a solar powered cold room, just a concrete room on the eastern side of a hill, with a fan to simulate wind. Sounds familiar, will let you know when I am finished mine.

By the way the house I have at the sea is solar powered and home here is having all the ceiling lights done for solar power. Green living.
Khaimraj


It wont work with me, My trees wont fit in a large commercial fridge (I dont do seedlings hehehe no offense)...nice idea though on the solar powered cold room, but I'm sure my wife will convert it into our living room. I used passive cooling design system, try that on your house by the beach.

regards,
jun
Smile

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Re: willow leaf ficus

Post  Khaimraj Seepersad on Sun Dec 19, 2010 11:08 pm


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Willow leaf fig

Post  bonsaisr on Sun Dec 19, 2010 11:43 pm

jun wrote:NYC (I spent more than a month in manhattan with my brother working there and be back again next year, I hope I can find time visiting some IBC members
Smile
Any time you are in NYC, I hope you will have a chance to visit Upstate NY. I can show you my fluorescent light room and struggling Ficus trees, which you will find very amusing. Cool
And we can go visit Bill Valavanis if he is around.
Iris

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Re: willow leaf ficus

Post  Guest on Mon Dec 20, 2010 12:40 am

bonsaisr wrote:
jun wrote:NYC (I spent more than a month in manhattan with my brother working there and be back again next year, I hope I can find time visiting some IBC members
Smile
Any time you are in NYC, I hope you will have a chance to visit Upstate NY. I can show you my fluorescent light room and struggling Ficus trees, which you will find very amusing. Cool
And we can go visit Bill Valavanis if he is around.
Iris


That's so nice of you Iris.

I'll make sure I'll find time next time. Do show me the night life too. I'm sure you still have the adventure in you, hehehe.

thanks.

regrards,
jun Smile

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Re: willow leaf ficus

Post  fiona on Mon Dec 20, 2010 1:17 am

jun wrote: Do show me the night life too. I'm sure you still have the adventure in you, hehehe.
Ah Jun, you'd never be able to keep up. Wink

When are you coming to Scotland to see a real climate challenge. Although I suspect you and I have one thing in common climatically: lots of rain.

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