Bonsai Journal 2020


Collected 3 Quercus robur next to the house.


Collected 1 Prunus spinosa in the orchard.


Collected 1 Prunus spinosa and 1 Malus domestica in the orchard, 1 Quercus robur next to the house, and 1 Salix caprea laying on the road after a tractor moved it.


Collected 2 Quercus robur next to the house.


Collected 1 Quercus robur next to the house and 1 Prunus avium next to the road.


Collected 1 Quercus robur next to the house.


Received 3 Prunus mahaleb, 3 Acer buergerianum, 3 Zelkova serrata, and 3 Wisteria sinensis.

Collected 1 Crataegus monogyna next to the road.


Put the previously mentioned trees in the ground over tiles.


Air layered apple trees.


Transfered 2 Buxus sempervirens that had rooted and 2 that had not but were still green into pots.


Received 6 Acer palmatum, 4 Prunus mahaleb, 2 Berberis buxifolia, and 1 Crataegus monogyna.


Repotted Ficus retusa #1 and cut the top branches that provided three cuttings.


Received a 4 kg bag of organic fertilizer (Magic Vegan NPK 6-4-6 + 2 M3gO + 9 SO3) from Wari Sabi Bonsai and put it on every trees.


Cleaned by hand the leaves of the oak trees that were infested with powdery mildew with water, sodium bicarbonate, olive oil, and soap.


Cut the top branch of Olea europa #1 and wired other branches to move them closer to the horizontal plan.

The top branch was transformed into two cuttings.


Tightened the plastic bags around the air layering of the apple trees, only one of them has taken root so far. Most probably dried up too much.

Received potassium bicarbonate and sprayed the oak trees that had severe powdery mildew infestation, along with the maple and the hornbeam trees as a preventive. Used 1L of water, 5g of potassium bicarbonate, 5g of olive oil, and 1 drop of liquid soap.

The Prunus spinosa #2, that made almost no leaves after being taken from the ground because it has almost no roots, is now making a lot of new leaves 4 months later.


The leaves of the 4 Ficus retusa cuttings seems to all be dying at the same time, even with the 2 where the pot was constantly immersed in water. I put 3 of them inside a plastic bag.


Collected cuttings from 2 hawthorns in the garden.

The Ficus retusa #1 is finally showing signs of creating new leaves after being repoted 3 weeks ago. It was very weak, that's probably why the cuttings are not working. Hopefully it'll get better with the new substrate and room to grow roots along with plenty of watering and feeding.


The leaves of the 6 young Acer palmatum received last month quickly burned in the partial sun until I put them in a completely shaded location, but most of them are now going back from a dark red color to a more healthy green color, at least those that are not too burned. Another good news is that some of them are producing new leaves.


Received 3 young unstyled Juniperus chinensis itoigawa and styled one of them to see how it will react.


Put organic fertilizer on every tree.


Some green is starting to appear on some buds of Prunus spinosa #1, a new flush is in preparation.

The old leaves of Ficus retusa #1 are turning black, it seems they are all burned from the sun. Not sure if it's due to watering too late in the morning or the quick succession of rain and sun around noon in the past week, or simply that those leaves formed in winter and one months of full sun slowly burned them and it's only now that it's quite visible.


Sprayed again potassium bicarbonate on the oak trees that showed new signs of powdery mildew on their more recent leaves. Also sprayed the hornbeam and the mapple trees.


Some young oak trees where on the ground for the past 2 weeks due to the wind and when I picked them up I noticed big roots shooting out of the pots. The root must be growing hard.


The first young apple tree I dig up last spring, because a hare ate its trunk, is making two new shoots from its base. The first shoot that appeared in spring is now big and tall. Unfortunately nothing grew on the half eaten trunk.


The Ficus retusa #1 is still loosing leaves, including new ones, but at the same time it also keep making new leaves. I moved it a week ago below a taller tree to get partial shade at noon. Not sure if it's just slowly dying as a consequence of having been forgotten outside in winter in the past or if it's something more recent. I'll move it again where it'll get a bit more shade.


Received 8 cuttings of Juniperus chinensis itoigawa that are between 2 and 3 years old, and 4 seedlings of Ginkgo biloba that are 2 years old.


Put organic fertilizer on every tree.


Sprayed again potassium bicarbonate on the oak trees that showed new signs of powdery mildew on their more recent leaves. Also sprayed the hornbeam, and the ficus that has small black dot on most leaves.


Wired and bent the trunk of three of the new Juniperus chinensis itoigawa cuttings and it went very well, much better than with the older ones.


Removed the wires on Olea europaea #1 because they were starting to bite into the branches that have grown quite a bit during the summer and replaced them by guy-wires. I also wired two new branches.

Watered the trees with a batch of diluted nettle manure.


Noticed new shoots on the main trunk of the apple tree mentioned a week ago, this is very good news, I though this trunk was dead but it's not.

Also noticed new leaves on the hawthorn cuttings that I took a month ago. They had all dried out after a few days but they may in fact survive.

The box cuttings from last year are doing good and the yew cuttings from two months ago are still green.


Received two 15 years old pre-bonsai from Mistral Bonsai, an Olea sylvestris and a Pyracantha coccinea, both with big trunks and lots of shoots to choose branches from next year. It's good to have a few more advanced material to work on while the rest is growing. I really like them!


The Olea europaea #1 is still growing and back budding. And the Ficus retusa #1 keep loosing young leaves but the very new ones look a bit better.


Assembled a greenhouse to winter the Mediterranean trees and keep them out of the rain.


Received one bag of Italian pumice (3-6 mm) and one bag of Portuguese red pine bark (5-15 mm). A few days later I put the red pine in 9 baskets to compost until next spring.


Removed the rotted dead wood of Quercus robur #1 at the top of the first part of the trunk.

The ginkgos, acers, and zelkovas are showing their beautiful autumn colors.


Collected a few hundreds hawthorn berries.


Mashed the hawthorn berries from yesterday with water in a bucket until I was able to throw away everything except the seeds that stayed at the bottom.

I decided to do the same thing for blackthorn berries so I collected a good quantity of them. I noticed that the trees that have berries already have falling yellow leaves, whereas the trees that don't still have green leaves.

I also noticed a natural air layering of an apple tree where the trunk was in contact with tall humid grass, it produced half a dozen roots about 1 cm long.

I'll leave the air layers I did in spring until next spring because they were too dry during the summer and I think that the rain of autumn and spring will help the production of roots.

Next year I'll do more apple air layer with moss instead of a mix of sand and compost, that and better sealing to retain moisture should give good results. I'll also air layer some hawthorn branches.


Mashed the blackthorn berries like the hawthorn, and dried both in the sun.

I collected 115 g of blackthorn stones and 45 g of hawthorn, which is about 650 and 450 seeds respectively.

I will let them dry for a few days, then put them in bags of sterilized compost and sand kept moist on a heating pad for 4 months, then 4 months in the fridge until the seedlings start to appear.


Watered the trees with a batch of diluted nettle manure.


Put organic fertilizer on every tree.


Put the blackthorn and hawthorn seeds in bags on a heating pad.


Collected two young Prunus out of a group of a dozen that I watched grow out of the ground for two years. The leaves had finally left them and it was time to have a first look.

Turns out they didn't grow from seeds as I though but from the roots of the parent tree. So their root system are not very nice, but they are young and I'll see how they evolve. I'll collect more of them in Spring because I can't let them grow where they are.


Collected one slightly bigger but still young apple tree that got eaten by a hare or a deer last winter and didn't grow much this season. The trunk has nice scares and one shoot above which I chopped it to create taper. I'm not sure how the tree will react because it was weak, but there's good chance that another winter with the animals around would have been fatal to it.


Collected two more Prunus. Actually I though it was only one tree but the shouts came from two roots crossing at perpendicular. Before that I dug up another one but it was also a shoot from a root with not potential so I put it back up in the ground.


The leaves on the hornbeam are now almost all brown. I can see all the faces and start planning what branches I'll cut when the time come.


One of the box cutting is making new shoots and the others look close to do the same.


Collected another young apple tree that got ravaged by horses, deers, and hares over the years. It was growing very weakly at his spot so I dug it out and kept most of the roots. If it survives I think it'll grow much better protected from the elements and the animals. The trunks are small but have a lot of caracters due to the damage on the bark.


Moved down three branches on Carpinus betulus #1 and one on Olea europaea sylvestris #1 with guy-wires.


Received 450 seeds of Acer buergerianum, 600 seeds of Acer Palmatum, 50 seeds of Chaenomeles speciosa, and 500 seeds of Zelkova serrata from Semences du Puy.


Prunned the branches that will not be used on Carpinus Betulus #1 but kept the leader to grow the trunk. I decided that I will put in the ground for two years to let it ticken the upper part of trunk before I chop it and perhaps fix some of its defect like its big scare or the light inverse taper.


Took about 50 cuttings of Euonymus europaeus from the garden and planted them in a pot that I put in the cold greenhouse.


Received a 25L bag of perlite and vermiculite mix for the seeds.


Received two pre-bonsai: a 6 years old Rhododendron indicum chinzan #1 and a 12 years old Chaenomeles japonica chojubai #1 from Bonsai Plaza that were originally imported from Japan.