Author Topic: subalpine fir  (Read 5383 times)

Jason E

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subalpine fir
« on: November 01, 2012, 10:33 PM »
Was wondering if anyone has any subalpine firs in their collections?
Share some pics? Experiences?

Jason
 

Yenling83

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Re: subalpine fir
« Reply #1 on: November 02, 2012, 01:12 PM »
I sure love looking at Fir up in the Sierras.  Very beautiful.  Sorry I don't have any Fir Bonsai or pics.  I'd sure like to collect one at some point, but I guess we will see.  Hopefully you get some good response.
 

Jason E

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Re: subalpine fir
« Reply #2 on: November 02, 2012, 11:12 PM »
the subalpine are nice, very small needles that radiate out 360 degrees from the branch like a M. hemlock. Also tend to be rather contorted when growing above treeline on exposed areas.
collected some this year along w/ Mt. Hemlock. Will post some pics.
 

Dan W.

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Re: subalpine fir
« Reply #3 on: November 03, 2012, 12:50 AM »
Jason, how is their bark? Most that see around my neck of the woods are straight and smooth...but I sure wouldn't mind finding a nice one.

A buddy of mine has had one for several years now; I'll ask him for pics and any info. :)

ps- love to see the ones you collected ;)
 

Jason E

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Re: subalpine fir
« Reply #4 on: November 03, 2012, 05:25 PM »
subalpine fir, collected at 5k ft. in WA State.
 

John Kirby

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Re: subalpine fir
« Reply #5 on: November 04, 2012, 09:27 AM »
Love these trees, I had one for about 5 years in NW Arkansas, was always too hot and the tree wasted away over time, eventually made for a nice Marshmallow roast. I would expect that in climates with cooler summers (at least cooler summer nights) that these trees should be fine. Don't see many firs in bonsai, and I am not completely sure why, I once heard a well known collector say that "Fir Bonsai are on the path to death once you start working on them", I thought, well technically that is true for all bonsai, eventually his point was that he didn't feel that they held up well under culture. I would hat if you can gradually get them out of the Mountain soil/gunk and into a reasonable mix they could do great. Like Mountain Hemlocks, they certainly have the character and age to certainly make a go at it. Even if they only work in a limited range, they would be great to see more of!
 

Chrisl

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Re: subalpine fir
« Reply #6 on: November 04, 2012, 11:15 AM »
Agree John.  I'd love to see more bonsai from this material.  And JMEK, this is a really nice yamadori!  Very very nice!
 

Jason E

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Re: subalpine fir
« Reply #7 on: November 04, 2012, 09:05 PM »
Thanks guys, have spoken w/ a few PNW folks who have learned the hard way to remove the old soil over a number of re-pottings as these don't take well to aggressive root work. Ryan has started a new species specific intensive focusing of fir,hemlock,spruce and redwood that Im exited to get into as these are the trees I've been collecting and plan on focusing my work on trees native to the PNW.

a neat pic of an old alpine fir
 

Chrisl

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Re: subalpine fir
« Reply #8 on: November 04, 2012, 11:47 PM »
That IS cool!  Thanks, I really enjoy seeing trees like this that have lived a rough life ;)

I saw that info on specific species intensives on Ryan's new website.  Man, if I had the money I'd be all over that.  I like conifers much better than deciduous trees, so it'd be a match made in heaven if I had the opportunity to study with Ryan lol  I bet you're going to learn a ton there, Good Luck and have fun!
 

Yenling83

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Re: subalpine fir
« Reply #9 on: November 05, 2012, 05:12 PM »
JMEX Thanks for those awesome pics!
 

Dan W.

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Re: subalpine fir
« Reply #10 on: November 05, 2012, 11:32 PM »
Those look great Jason  :)

I've had better luck finding Douglas Fir's with character, but certainly won't pass up the opportunity to collect nice Sub-Alpine if I find any.
 

Allen

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Re: subalpine fir
« Reply #11 on: November 06, 2012, 04:54 PM »
This is a yamadori collected on Mt Adam's, Washington
 

thomas tynan

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Re: subalpine fir
« Reply #12 on: November 06, 2012, 09:21 PM »
The examples of collected trees of sub-alpine fir are all very good - but as John Kirby mentions - perhaps these firs, along with Mounatin Hemlock, I might add - simply cannot be cared for on the East Coast. Although some of the native trees such as Ponderosa Pine, Lodgepole Pine, Limber Pine and Rocky Mountain Juniper do adapt well on the East Coast - my own experience with the Sub-Alpine Fir has not been favorable. I had a wonderful specimen collected by a very well known collector that had a well developed root system - that up and died after about a year and a half. The roots of the sub-alpine fir and the mountain hemlock are unique and seem to suffer in our heat and humidity. In addition the needles themselves have many small pores (stomata). They like a cooler evening and not our oppressive July and August months.

The best examples of these will be in the Rocky Mountain Bonsai Society and in the Pacific Northwest clubs and shows. The best known example I believe is the composition by the late Bob Kataoka known as the 47 Ronin or a group planting of alpine fir - 47 trees  at  the Pacific Rim collection. I don' t think you will find much on-line in the way of care and  training. Enjoy the trees esp. the wonderful bark and needle aroma. A few good examples in "The Bonsai Workshop" by Herb Gustafson.  Tom
 

Chrisl

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Re: subalpine fir
« Reply #13 on: November 07, 2012, 01:20 PM »
Where are you located thomas?  Just curious.
 

thomas tynan

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Re: subalpine fir
« Reply #14 on: November 07, 2012, 02:09 PM »
Chris: New York State. Tom