Author Topic: Ground growing... without the ground?  (Read 2222 times)

jlushious

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Ground growing... without the ground?
« on: March 17, 2014, 12:40 PM »
I am struggling with a good method to try and thicken up some of the juvenile material I have acquired. I don't have a yard or space to plant anything out in the ground and am trying to find out what the next best option is, but everything I have found just says to stick it in the ground. Anybody have any suggestions? Or am I pretty much just needing to be more patient with pot growing/thickening?
 

Anthony

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Re: Ground growing... without the ground?
« Reply #1 on: March 17, 2014, 12:53 PM »
jlushious,

Questions,

[1] How thick a trunk to how tall a tree?

[2] How long a growing season/period?

[3] Placement in the sun or dappled light?

Options-

You can place colanders at 8" wide into colanders 12" wide in colanders 16" wide into .............
Soil mix depends on your growing conditions.

You can also use fibreglass or plastic window mesh or landscape fabric [ stitch a cylinder add a base ]. Or just buy a large smart pot on Amazon.com.

Expect long, long branch extensions and probably a fertiliser high in Nitrogen.
As you respond.
Good Day
Anthony
 

jlushious

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Re: Ground growing... without the ground?
« Reply #2 on: March 17, 2014, 12:57 PM »
 Most of them are just whip sized, a variety of species (deciduous and conifers). If they were ground growing they would definitely need a good 4-6 years of ground before they are anything special.

Growing season is maybe (wishful thinking) about 4 months or so, at most. Very cold winters with rapid freeze/thaw cycles even in the depths on January.

Right now it's morning sun with mid-day and afternoon shade, no dappled light unless I set up a shade cloth. I could also potentially move them to another spot that gets more mid-day/afternoon direct light.

I can make big grow boxes, have access to colanders and standard nursery pots, lots of options, just no garden/ground.
 

Yenling83

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Re: Ground growing... without the ground?
« Reply #3 on: March 17, 2014, 01:42 PM »


J-Just use colanders and grow boxes for now if you don’t have ground space.  Depending on the species you are growing generally for the first several years you will want to work organizing the nebari of your trees with each repot.  Some of the best producers of Deciduous in Japan do not grow in the ground, and they get some very large trunks with amazing nebari.  You need to feed like crazy, I’ve heard of these growers feeding every three days.  In the ground is the fastest way to grow, however if you don’t have access there’s nothing else you can really do.  Check out Bonsaitonight.com if you search around that site you can see some great examples of ground grown vs. colander/grow box growth.  Good luck     
 

bwaynef

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Re: Ground growing... without the ground?
« Reply #4 on: March 17, 2014, 07:35 PM »
I'd also recommend doing some research into the soil you're going to use as well.  I believe (and hope and trust I'll be corrected if I'm wrong) that the looser the soil, the faster the growth.  The downside is that it also means you'll have to water more often.
 

Anthony

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Re: Ground growing... without the ground?
« Reply #5 on: March 17, 2014, 07:45 PM »
jlushious,

if in colanders, how do you winter your trees ?
Would the cold kill them?
The colander technique is used in a zone 7 in Japan.
Good Day
Anthony

* with such a short growing season, trees under 20 cm might be easier for you.
 

jlushious

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Re: Ground growing... without the ground?
« Reply #6 on: March 17, 2014, 08:37 PM »
I am using all non-organics for my soil. I don't have a problem watering regularly as I know the wind can dry out colanders really easily.

Zone 3 is pretty crazy so most of my trees will be in cold storage in a cellar type space. It get below freezing but not ridiculously below. Mostly we have to worry about the rapid freeze/thaw and keeping sun off the foliage which works if I keep stuff in a cellar.

I have a few trees in colanders, a few in grow baskets and most of the rest in cut down nursery pots.
 

Gaffer

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Re: Ground growing... without the ground?
« Reply #7 on: March 18, 2014, 03:11 PM »
Hi jlush
Are you going to live in Alberta long. That will answer a few questions. Instead of dealing with whips and like, save some money and by a couple of trunks that arenot developed and start your collection from there. You can buy a maple trunk no branches for about 250 and it will save you 10 years and you can have a reasonable tree in say 7 to 10 years. It might sound like a lot of money but it sure speeds up the process. Besides growing trunks is just the start but not as much fun as creating the branches and working the nabari . Just a thought.
Qualicum Brian
 

Leo in NE Illinois

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Re: Ground growing... without the ground?
« Reply #8 on: March 23, 2014, 10:29 AM »
Brent Walston has a few articles on Evergreen Gardenworks site about growing trunks. He uses pots rather than ground for much of his stock. One suggestion is to step whips up into large and larger pots. BUT he cautions not to overpot. Roots must fill the pot before going to the next size up. cut down nursery pots are the norm. Pot growing might be slower, but with good care, can be within a couple years of in ground.
 

jlushious

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Re: Ground growing... without the ground?
« Reply #9 on: March 24, 2014, 09:07 AM »
I will be in Alberta for the long haul, my challenge is that right now we just rent, and the house has no usable garden space (just grass), so I can't really dig up some sod to make a small planting out area or anything.

There IS a lot of great material out there, more mature stuff for a higher cost, it's just hard to get my hands on it (lots of it is down in the US) although if I do make a trip out to BC again, there are lots of options there, just not necessarily anything that's going to survive well out here. My second option would be to try and buy something off a member of the Edmonton Club or the Lethbridge one, they probably have the closest climates and would more likely have something that would also survive out here.

Thanks Leo, I had read about the danger of "overpotting" particularly for some species so will definitely not just stick everything in 5 gallon pots! I have been using some colanders and some net pots (used for hydropnics) but with the wind out here I may have to take steps to protect them in the summer from drying out.