Spring at Shibui Bonsai

After the cold, bleak winter spring seems to arrive suddenly. The first green shoots on Chinese elms are the heralds then, suddenly, everywhere is new life and color.

Late winter and early spring sees an ever changing pallette of color as flowers come and go. Prunus are some of the first quickly followed by forsythia, crab apples and azaleas. If you happen to have a green thumb you may even be able to get wisteria to flower reliably as a bonsai

Shibui Bonsai has an ever changing list of flowering trees suitable for bonsai. Email Neil to see if I have the one you are searching for. Please don’t ask if you can buy the trees pictured above. They are all from my personal collection and hold far more sentimental value than monetary. I do, however, offer younger stock at reasonable prices, some already at flowering age and size.

Azaleas also make great bonsai if your conditions are right. At my last property something was just not quite right and azaleas slowly deteriorated over several years until they died. Moving just a few Km saw a miraculous change and now they thrive under similar care. I cannot work out the details, just that it is so.

Azaleas have been grown by gardeners all round the world for many years so we now have a bewildering array of types with a wide range of flower colors and shapes. Here are a few from Shibui Bonsai nursery this month.

Azaleas transplant really easily. It is one of my favorite species for collecting from gardens as they seem to transplant successfully any month of the year. Don’t bother trying to retain a large root ball – azaleas don’t need it. Shake off as much garden soil as will come away without undue damage to the roots, cut damaged roots to fit the container and pot with good quality potting soil or your favorite bonsai mix, water well and place in a semi-shade area until the roots recover.

Azaleas will also grow new buds on old wood so taller stems can be chopped hard with confidence knowing masses of new shoots will usually appear all over the stumps. i currently have some quite large collected azaleas for sale. Most are planted in large polystyrene fruit boxes and are too big to post but there are also a few in 15, 20 and 30 cm orchid pots. POA

Many other flowering species suit bonsai. Here are few I occasionally have available for sale.

Shibui winter 2021 Seedling sale

We have plenty of self sown maple seedlings in the garden beds at Shibui Bonsai again this year. These have all grown without any help so I can supply them at reduced rates. These seedlings will only be available until they start to grow in spring or until sold out.

First up let’s deal with quarantine. We cannot send trees to either WA or Tasmania due to plant quarantine rules and before you start complaining it is best to remember those restrictions are there to protect you and your wonderful environment from a range of pests and diseases that we battle daily here in the Eastern Mainland.

Trident maple seedlings are supplied in a range of different sizes

Small: seedlings with trunks under 3mm thick only 50c each. These are still flexible so suit wiring and bending or as smaller trees in a group planting. Also useful for root grafting.

Medium: trunks 3-6mm diameter approx $1 each

Suit group plantings, growing on, threading through plates, fusion projects and more.

Large: trunks 6-10mm thick $2 each

Great for larger trunks in a group planting or to grow on for larger bonsai trunks in future.

There are a few trunks larger than 10mm. $5 each while they last. Please note that thicker does not always mean better. These will usually have a large trunk chop and may have less attractive roots than the smaller ones.

Forest packs $20. A mix of different sizes suitable to make your own group planting. Usually 3 large, 10 medium and 10 small trunks.

Bent trunks: While most of these feral seedlings are pretty straight some have bends. These bent ones could be better for approach grafts to roots or to grow small trunks with good low bends. Price as per trunk thickness above.

I am happy to select seedlings with specific characteristics if you let me know exactly what you require so the more info you can give me as to your plans the better I can tailor your order.

Japanese Maples: These are not as prolific so numbers are limited and most are smaller size than tridents above. All JM seedlings $1 each and you get whatever sizes come up.

Please don’t expect too much from these feral seedlings. They will be packed just as they come out of the garden as shown above so some have lots of roots, some have fewer but all should survive as tridents are really tough. Even those with just a very few roots have great survival rates. The roots are only trimmed roughly to fit in bundles. You can’t expect me to do detailed root work at those prices so that’s up to you when they arrive. Trunks will be chopped to fit into a 50-60 cm long pack. Further detailed pruning to size is also up to you.

Trees are sent bare root. I’ll bundle the trunks, wrap the roots in wet newspaper and wrap in a plastic bag to retain moisture. Trees will survive quite comfortably this way during delivery and for several weeks if necessary. On arrival please check and refresh root moisture if necessary. Trees can be stored in a cool place for a few weeks or even longer if you are not ready to pot up straight away. For longer term storage roots should be buried in damp soil, sand or sawdust until planting is possible.

Delivery: Please allow for the cost of delivery in addition to the tree price. Trees are sent direct to your mailing address via Auspost. Price depends on the size, weight and destination of the order so I’ll need to quote each package to give you the best price so please supply your delivery address or at very least a postcode when ordering so I can calculate a price for delivery. typical cost is likely to be: smaller packages under 1kg $15 regular mail or $20 express. More than 1 forest pack or larger numbers of individual trees could be $25 or $30 for delivery.

Email neil@shibuibonsai.com.au to place an order or to discuss your needs this season.