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Boon Mix?

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These juicy debate threads seem to take on a life of their own.  Since I am not a SOB, probably will never be an SOB, that allows me to poke fun.

While it is true that Fresno California may not be known as a "the hotbed of bonsai" nationaly, the central valley does have many credible bonsai artists.  I started bonsai in 1984. In that first year I was introduced to inorganic soil mix. Akadama, pumice and lava.

Just exactly what year did this concoction become known as Boon Mix?

I been usuing it since 1984, Ray Thieme showed it to me and he's been usin it since 1964. Why are we not callin it Ray mix?

Did bonsai not exist before Boon?

I may have his Japan papers around here somewhere, I think I signed them, that would be a hoot to see. I'll look for them.

To no real defense of Boon or any SOB, I think he/they are just the ones really driving this mix home and not accepting alternatives.

John Kirby:
All was this before or after they nailed you to the cross?

The Japanese have been using it for decades, so it probably predates Fresno, the center of the Bonsai Universe. I believe that people started calling it Boon's mix when he started using it on others trees. I am pretty sure it was not Boon, maybe Morten.

Nathan, I am sure that there are other mixes that will work fine- straight pumice, strait lava, Calidama, whatever. The point is consistency. Oh, by the way I do use other mixes. Kanuma and pumice for Satsukis and perlite for starting cuttings. My non use of the other stuff available to me is not because I blindly jumped in to using Boon's mix- I used to get tiurface by the Ton (pallet loads), haydite and Bark by the dump truck load. I switched to Boon's mix about 7 years ago because it works unbelievably better. Not necessarily the only thing that works. Get the Turface folks to get us 3/16-1/2 inch screened material and I will be happy to try it again- maybe.

John -- When you say it "works unbelievably better", can you say more about what that means?  In what ways does it work better?  What the key factors you use in judging whether a soil mix is good?   Thanks! 

-- I should add, presumably "better" is relative to various things, but can you speak in particular to the good qualities of this mix relative to the one other you mentioned, Turface, which is what I've been using (screen tediously to 1/8") since I have easy access to it.   


John - I note that you mentioned using Kanuma and Pumice for a Azaleas, I am using 100% Kanuma here with great results

1/ what benefit do you see adding Pumice to it?

2/ What ratios of each do you use ?



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