OVERALL SUMMARY AND CONCLUSION TO THIS INITIAL "1:10
This project began in 2000 when the seed was planted so the
tree is just 13 years in training. It's gone through
several major training sessions and was the lead tree in
several of them. As such, it is one of our favorite
trees. The original article and the summary provides details
of the development stages and the techniques used.
Although these techniques may seem new to those who have not
previously been exposed to them, they are not secrets
and Fuku-Bonsai has freely shared them on this website which
went up in 1999, just a year before we planted the seed crop
that produced this tree.
We've used the aluminum foil as part of root extensions for
longer than that with a steady small and large improvements
being continually developed. We now make great effort
to contour the surface of the shallow saucer-pot, adding a
fine layer of organic material and fine aggregate on the
surface. We cover the entire saucer-pot surface first
and extend up the root-trunk as high as possible. In
this case, the first foil covered the bottom and about
halfway up the root-trunk. A second foil column
protected the top half.
Note that below the foil, a large number of hair roots
are now colonizing the surface and this is a good situation.
The foil will be loosely replaced to allow the hair roots to
harden off to be followed by increasingly heavier roots
which will hold the contoured surface intact. The foil
will be loosened and more air holes created in the foil
cover. Over time, moss will grow on that
I am constantly asked how long to leave the foil on and of
course it depends upon the situation! Why do you need
it? When will the need be over? You need to understand
the situation and if you do, you'll realize every situation
is different, but you'll know the criteria as to when you
can begin removing it.
I am also constantly asked how long it takes for every
possible activity and again it depends upon the situation!
Does it really matter how long it takes? It will
really depend upon your growing situation so it really
depends on you. Too often some customers want to grow
their bonsai in very low light and are disappointed to learn
that's why their trees don't develop! Some seemed
truly surprised when I tell they that plants don't grow well
in caves! But I think they know this and just trying
to see if I'll pity them. I don't. I try to help
but each person really determines whether they will be
successful or not. I think that those that have joined
the study groups really want to be successful and are
working at it. They really are a joy to work with!
Most people automatically assume they know plants but they
don't. They refuse to follow my instructions and
automatically invent their own methods because they just
don't believe me or think they know better. So they
"invent a cure for a problem that does not exist!"
They think the tree is dying when it wilts a bit, greatly
increase the watering, and kill plants by over-watering.
Others quickly place a tree that wilts a little into a
terrarium-like humidity chamber that pampers and produces a
weak tree that must continually be babied!
In just the two years since we started the 1:10 Project,
I have not killed any trees! But it may be a good time
to explain why. Fuku-Bonsai uses proprietary
techniques that produces drought-resistant plants.
It's really common sense. We grow plants in shade and
full sun at different times as part of our cultural
practices. In Kurtistown, we may get 175" of rain
annually so our potting media is extremely fast-draining
or the plants would rot. But we grow the plants in
full sun on roof iron benches in small shallow containers.
We get dry spells too and the plants wilt. But they
often do not get watered and some die. That's how we
get rid of plants that are always thirsty!
You should know that plants that are primarily fed a
high-nitrogen fertilizer are always thirsty and must be
watered before they dry out. This is especially true if you
are using water-soluble nitrogen and phosphorus. We don't.
We use Nutrient Granules™ that are low nitrogen / high
phosphorous that are not water-soluble.
We supply a complimentary packet with each plant we sell.
And of course we only ship plants that have survived our
"drought-resistant" culling system! So please don't
baby our plants! Contact me if you think you have
problems and include a photograph. I'll try to help!