A Year in the Life of an Elaeagnus Silverberry

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A Year in the Life of an Elaeagnus Silverberry

Post  Rob Kempinski on Mon Apr 11, 2011 7:59 pm

Here is a year in the life of a Silverberry (Elaeagnus sp). Nursery grown bonsai material

March of 2010. Taken at a club members yard during a study group meeting.

Side 1

Side 2


Side 3


Close up of the left side showing aerial root and sucker shoots.


Aerial root removal.

Initial work

This was it a month later. It seemed to survive the prior work but I didn't like the lack of taper up top, so I decided to shorten the tree further and to grow a new leader (one of those two new shoots that had popped.) Round pot by Dale Cochoy, USA.


Now 12 months later. Good virorous growth. The leaves are a bit big but that is due to lack of pinching.


Removal of two smaller aerial roots.

Partially defoliated.

With wire and time to grow some more taper and ramification. As it develops I may streamline the branching a bit as there is a some extra now and what is there is very curvy due to lots of wire over the year.


This work summarize my favorite approach to bonsai design - that is to grow into the design instead of rerouting branches all over the place.

Rob Kempinski
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Re: A Year in the Life of an Elaeagnus Silverberry

Post  Zach Smith on Mon Apr 11, 2011 10:32 pm

Rob Kempinski wrote:Here is a year in the life of a Silverberry (Elaeagnus sp). Nursery grown bonsai material

This work summarize my favorite approach to bonsai design - that is to grow into the design instead of rerouting branches all over the place.
Very nice work, Rob. I've been wanting to do an elaeagnus for years, haven't yet found the right material. Please post more pics as this one develops.

Zach

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Re: A Year in the Life of an Elaeagnus Silverberry

Post  F. Waheedy on Mon Apr 11, 2011 10:41 pm

Hi Rob,

Very nice approach and very well documented.
I'm doing the same with a few of my trees as well. couple of Tridents and a massive crab apple.
Have a long way to go but some day I too will post some pictures.

Thank you for sharing.

Regards,

Faisal

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silverberry

Post  moyogijohn on Tue Apr 12, 2011 1:05 am

Nice tree Rob,,,it has went through a lot of changes!!! you did wire the branches tight,,,it will be good take care john

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Re: A Year in the Life of an Elaeagnus Silverberry

Post  Randy_Davis on Tue Apr 12, 2011 1:51 am

Rob Kempinski wrote:Here is a year in the life of a Silverberry (Elaeagnus sp).
This work summarize my favorite approach to bonsai design - that is to grow into the design instead of rerouting branches all over the place.

Very nice tree Rob and I agree with you on growing into a design when you can. Your tree looks like Elaeagnus angustifolia (Russian Olive) to me. They are considered a noxious weed here. I guess I should get out and see what those weed shrubs have to offer as material. That should give me something to do tomorrow! Very Happy

Randy

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Re: A Year in the Life of an Elaeagnus Silverberry

Post  sunip on Tue Apr 12, 2011 8:13 am

Rob Kempinski wrote:

Now 12 months later. Good virorous growth. The leaves are a bit big but that is due to lack of pinching.
This work summarize my favorite approach to bonsai design - that is to grow into the design instead of rerouting branches all over the place.
Hi Rob,
You gave me a great idea, do i see it right, you wire the watering system in place!
Thanks, Sunip Wink

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Re: A Year in the Life of an Elaeagnus Silverberry

Post  Rob Kempinski on Tue Apr 12, 2011 12:30 pm

sunip wrote:
Rob Kempinski wrote:

Now 12 months later. Good virorous growth. The leaves are a bit big but that is due to lack of pinching.
This work summarize my favorite approach to bonsai design - that is to grow into the design instead of rerouting branches all over the place.
Hi Rob,
You gave me a great idea, do i see it right, you wire the watering system in place!
Thanks, Sunip Wink

Sunip,

yes sometimes I do if the plastic holders (on the left) have difficulty penetrating the root pad or if I happen to have none on hand, I'll use a thick piece of old wire to hold the microsprinkler in place.

I use what we call in the space business a two-fault tolerant watering system. That means there can be two system failures and my trees still get watered. It's absolutely necessary due to my professional travel schedule. A well and pump system water the trees first, followed immediately by a city water system with microsprinklers. If the power goes off the city water is under pressure and works with a battery operated computer for controlling the microsprinklers (happens during hurricanes). If city water goes out, the well can still pump and a battery back up controls the timing. The last leg of redundancy is my wife who checks the trees in the afternoon when I'm not around. I love you

The system does require constant maintenance but it does save lots of labor in hand watering.

Rob Kempinski
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Re: A Year in the Life of an Elaeagnus Silverberry

Post  sunip on Tue Apr 12, 2011 1:12 pm

Hi Rob
Wow a three legged system.
Years ago a Japanese neighbour told me about his family who had bonsai
and because of that never went on holidays.
My reaction then was; crazy.
Ah well, her i am now doing bonsai.
regards, Sunip Wink

sunip
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A couple of weeks later

Post  Rob Kempinski on Tue Apr 26, 2011 3:08 pm

A couple of weeks later the leaves have filled in nicely and are still small.


Rob Kempinski
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Re: A Year in the Life of an Elaeagnus Silverberry

Post  Billy M. Rhodes on Tue Apr 26, 2011 4:09 pm

This is a vigorous pant to say the least. I tell people if you have an ugly view plant a few of these and in a few years the view will be covered.

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Re: A Year in the Life of an Elaeagnus Silverberry

Post  Rob Kempinski on Tue Apr 26, 2011 6:12 pm

Billy M. Rhodes wrote:This is a vigorous pant to say the least. I tell people if you have an ugly view plant a few of these and in a few years the view will be covered.

Very vigorous. Can't leave the wire on too long.

This is my medium size one, I also have a monster still in work.

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Re: A Year in the Life of an Elaeagnus Silverberry

Post  Pavel Slovák on Tue Apr 26, 2011 6:33 pm

Hi Rob

Very good work. Very nice and interesing development ThumbsUp . Congratulations.

Gretings Pavel

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Re: A Year in the Life of an Elaeagnus Silverberry

Post  Guest on Wed Apr 27, 2011 3:47 am

I have a ton of these puppies growing on my land, 6-8 feet some of them. I have been seriously considering lifting one of the larger specimines and working with it, attracted as i was to small silvery leaves, lovely perfumed flowers and the little red berries.. I now know what My day will be tommorrow..thank you for this!

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Re: A Year in the Life of an Elaeagnus Silverberry

Post  Rob Kempinski on Wed Apr 27, 2011 5:07 pm

man on the mountain wrote:I have a ton of these puppies growing on my land, 6-8 feet some of them. I have been seriously considering lifting one of the larger specimines and working with it, attracted as i was to small silvery leaves, lovely perfumed flowers and the little red berries.. I now know what My day will be tommorrow..thank you for this!

Go for it and let us know how you make out.

Rob Kempinski
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Re: A Year in the Life of an Elaeagnus Silverberry

Post  Guest on Thu Apr 28, 2011 1:49 am

Hi Rob

Here are some pictures of my work today with my local Elaeagnus (most probably E. commutata) trick was to find singal or double trunks, as you can see they're huge and want to make 5 or more massive trunks per plant (more than I can deal with to be sure)

this is a small sampling of these trees up the hill from my house..they're biggies


I found a couple and went to work, It was the perfect time as buds were just breaking, This should allow for course strong back budding which is perfect for my new leaders.


After a lot of work with my trusty Corona pruning saw I got back to this, all cuts were sealed and i leave the branches extra long to use for leverage and for tying points for rope or a winch when its collecting time. The roots were right near the surface so hopefully she wont fight me too hard.
[url=https://servimg.com/image_preview.php?
i=31&u=16408820][/url]

I might even try to lift these later this year once they make some growth, Its been my experience that you really have to work at it to kill these things...we'll see!

Guest
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Re: A Year in the Life of an Elaeagnus Silverberry

Post  Rob Kempinski on Thu Apr 28, 2011 1:52 am

man on the mountain wrote:Hi Rob

Here are some pictures of my work today with my local Elaeagnus (most probably E. commutata) trick was to find singal or double trunks, as you can see they're huge and want to make 5 or more massive trunks per plant (more than I can deal with to be sure)

this is a small sampling of these trees up the hill from my house..they're biggies


I found a couple and went to work, It was the perfect time as buds were just breaking, This should allow for course strong back budding which is perfect for my new leaders.


After a lot of work with my trusty Corona pruning saw I got back to this, all cuts were sealed and i leave the branches extra long to use for leverage and for tying points for rope or a winch when its collecting time. The roots were right near the surface so hopefully she wont fight me too hard.
[url=https://servimg.com/image_preview.php?
i=31&u=16408820][/url]

I might even try to lift these later this year once they make some growth, Its been my experience that you really have to work at it to kill these things...we'll see!

Wow, those are pretty cool. Some basic broom shapes already. Interesting to see that they are deciduous in your area.
Try lifting now, would be a good time to collect, no?

Rob Kempinski
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Re: A Year in the Life of an Elaeagnus Silverberry

Post  Guest on Thu Apr 28, 2011 2:26 am

I need to see some green on these branches to help heal any root damage, I want to use the power of that intact root sytem to blow out buds, these could easily be lifted as late as june or even early july, something I would never try say with a Beech, but these are much like willows in that they will root even if you look at them funny.

Guest
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Re: A Year in the Life of an Elaeagnus Silverberry

Post  Rob Kempinski on Tue Jul 19, 2011 12:51 am

Here's a mid-summer update of the Elaeagnus. As you can see - it has made a bunch of branches. The top has thickened considerably - actually very fast. I removed wire that was digging in and will rewire in the fall. Pot is by Dale Cochoy.
A hasty cell phone shot.


Rob Kempinski
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Re: A Year in the Life of an Elaeagnus Silverberry

Post  Neli on Tue Jan 28, 2014 6:42 pm

Hi Rob,
I did not find much info on eleagnus. I have one that I have just started developing.
I wanted to ask, for any advise on it.
Basically how do you develop the branches? Let them grow a lot and then cut back?
Any advise will be appreciated.

Neli
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Re: A Year in the Life of an Elaeagnus Silverberry

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