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General Bonsai Discussion / Boxwood blight
« Last post by snipologist on June 30, 2017, 04:55 AM »
Boxwood blight is an uncurable and fatal fungal disease that affects many types of boxwood.  It has been detected in several states and has now entered the north eastern part of Illinois.  Due to this serious threat The Chicago Botanic Garden and Morton Arboretum have banned boxwood bonsai from being shown in bonsai shows held in these locations.  Vendors may also not bring boxwood to sell at the shows. 

It would be good for all to check for this disease on any boxwood in their collections.  Here is a link for more information on the disease.
Deciduous Bonsai Discussion / Corylus avellana contorta
« Last post by msudholt on May 13, 2017, 09:10 PM »
Have a Corylus avellana contorta rubra.  Developing nicely into a semi-cascade but the leaves are large.  Does anyone have experience reducing leaf size in this species?  Does it respond well to defoliation?
Mike S
Japanese Black Pine Bonsai Discussion / Re: Dothistroma & blight
« Last post by 0soyoung on May 05, 2017, 06:43 PM »
My view is that you should remove all the older needles, even ones that seem unaffected, keeping only the needles from this season's growth. Pine needle fungi are inside the affected needles - that is why there are visible effects. Keeping them only invites the formation of fruiting bodies and the release of spores to infect anything nearby. The objective of spraying is to kill the spores, IMHO.

I have been fortunate to have never had a serious needle blight type of issue. However, I spray a peroxide solution anytime I see anything I suspect to be a fungal issue on any of my trees. I prefer to leave Daconyl and the like as the nuclear options. Consider trying 2 tablespoons of 3% hyrdrogen peroxide in a quart of water. It is an effective broad-spectrum fungicide as well as anti-bacterial AND is very eco-friendly (H2O2 --> O + H2O; the reactive oxygen does all the work) ... periodic spraying at fruiting times.
Japanese Black Pine Bonsai Discussion / Re: Dothistroma & blight
« Last post by Kent2106 on April 20, 2017, 05:10 AM »
Bwaynef, thank you for your reply!

I am pretty sure it is one of the blights -  Dothistroma has caused many problems with commercial pine growers here in SA and it is listed as the main culprit (along with cast) causing trees to suffer/die.  They don't really spray or treat in commercial growing because of high cost.  They rather chop the trees and let the ground/soil recover by not planting for a few years. But copper fungicides is what they list as treatment.

Not touching needles and start spraying in spring...this is what I have done last year! Didn't touch the tress but had a rigorous spraying program in place starting in winter  (lime sulphur, Chlorothalonil, copper fungicides) all the way through to autumn... no success. 

My thinking was to rather stress the trees now (autumn) and to eliminate fruiting bodies infecting current year needles.  Have the winter dormancy for recovering and (hopefully) no or very little spores in spring... in theory!!!

I did read on a well respected bonsai website that blight/Dothistroma can NOT be cured but rather managed by removing infected needles as soon these show signs of infection - hence reducing the likelihood for the pathogens to spread.  BUT if once infected you will not be able to get rid of it.  Can anyone confirm this???

For now my plan is to use higher concentrations of the copper fungicides and spray in shorter intervals. 
Well, I guess this is the only choice I have...
Bonsai Shows Discussion / Walter Pall's American assistant
« Last post by snipologist on April 19, 2017, 12:06 AM »
My friend Jennifer Price has been working with Walter Pall for a few years.  He refers to her as his American assistant and as Bonsai Princess.  Jennifer will be doing a demo and workshop at Generations Bonsai in Munich, Germany.  The location is MINORU BONSAIAlter Bammentaler Weg 1069151 Neckargem√ľnd. Jennifer will do a demo on Friday May 12 from 9 am to 5pm and a workshop on Sunday May 14 from 9 am to 5pm.  I know this is short notice but if anyone will be in Munich at the time you might check it out.  For more info go to
General Bonsai Discussion / Inquiring on method for dying sphagnum moss
« Last post by idowatsu on April 15, 2017, 05:22 PM »
I am getting ready to follow a suggestion to grate 50/50 sphagnum moss and regular moss to keep in the soil after transplanting. There was a comment by Ryan Niel about dying the sphagnum to not look so bleached. I have take-sumi ink  although I am not sure how to actually dye the moss, like how much to dilute the ink. can anyone enlighten me?
Japanese Black Pine Bonsai Discussion / Re: Dothistroma & blight
« Last post by bwaynef on April 14, 2017, 08:35 AM »
I look at this from two viewpoints.  You need to verify what it is you're up against.  In the US, there are (Agricultural) extension offices that can test for various diseases and ailments.  Do you have something like that available to you?  The next best situation would be if you have a reputable nursery close by that may have experience with what you're dealing with.

If you can't verify as mentioned above, and your belief is that you can (effectively?) manage it by spraying in the spring, why put the tree through the stress of removing needles unnecessarily?
Fruiting and Flowering Bonsai Discussion / Re: reshaping crabapple trunk
« Last post by bwaynef on April 14, 2017, 08:29 AM »
I'd imagine, if you want abrubt, angular, sharp bends, you'll need to chop it and only wire for direction rather than movement.
Evergreen Bonsai Discussion / Re: Mugo pine dying buds
« Last post by bwaynef on April 14, 2017, 08:26 AM »
As to grafting I don't do grafting on Mugos and grow a lot them. 

Is that because they bud so readily you don't find it necessary, or because you've managed to work around it in your designs?
Fruiting and Flowering Bonsai Discussion / Re: reshaping crabapple trunk
« Last post by Jay on April 14, 2017, 06:38 AM »
Well..... Wrapping the branch or trunk is never a bad idea. As for abrupt bends, hard to say. My gut is probably not, especially in 1/2 inch material. Crabs will snap. If you have multiple trunks (or a thick branch) one which you are planning to remove, take the time and wire that one. You will learn quickly what you can't do. If you are a member of a club, or are near a club, bring the tree to a meeting. Someone is going to be able to help you. First hand visual knowledge is the best. And being in a club opens up a knowledge base to you.
Good luck
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