Tag Archives: Shoots

Bud types – reproductive and vegetative

The reproductive system and organs of plants are extremely varied and complex, and worthy of an entire website to themselves – a comprehensive view is beyond the scope of this website. But what I want to do is provide a bit of information to help you identify which buds might be reproductive vs vegetative. There […] Read more… >

Bonsai Tree Growth Stages

Most bonsai trees progress through stages of development, each with a different objective. In general the progression is thicken trunk -> achieve branch & root structure -> achieve branch, foliage & root ramification -> reduce leaf size -> evolve as branches grow/fall off. The faster we can move through the first few development stages, the […] Read more… >

Growth Types Table

Fixed Growth (determinate) (leaves formed inside the bud before opening) Free Growth (indeterminate)(leaves and buds continue forming throughout season) Rhythmic Growth (a bit of both) AshBeechHornbeamOakHickoryWalnutHorse chestnutPineSpruceGinkgo short shoots ElmLime/lindenCherryBirchPoplarWillowSweet gum/ liquidambarAlderAppleLarchJuniperWestern Red CedarCoastal RedwoodGinkgo long shootsMaple Loblolly pineShortleaf pineMonterey pineCaribbean pineCocoaRubber treeAvocadoMangoTeaLycheeCitrusOlivePinus radiata From Thomas (2018) and RNETR

Plant Growth Regulators (or Phytohormones)

You’ve probably heard of rooting hormone powder, or auxin, or gibberellins – these are all ‘Plant Growth Regulators’. Plant Growth Regulators used to be known as ‘phytohormones’ which means plant hormones. This has been quite a contentious topic among plant biologists. A hormone in an animal is a chemical messenger, a substance which acts as […] Read more… >

Gymnosperm (Conifer) Budding

Gymnosperms relevant for bonsai include ginkgo and the Pinales order (Araucariaceae, Cephalotaxaceae, Cupressaceae, Pinaceae, Phyllocladaceae, Podocarpaceae, Sciadopityaceae & Taxaceae – this is explained in The kingdom Plantae and where trees fit in). Ginkgo is a special case described separately at the end of this post. So what we’re interested in in bonsai is where lateral […] Read more… >

Tree Phenology (or Seasonal Cycles)

The term phenology is used to describe the life cycle of a biological organism like a tree. Phenological events for trees include bud development, bud break, flowering, fruiting and leaf & fruit drop, as well as other unseen changes such as sap rising, seed development, root growth, cambial activity or hardening off of tissues for […] Read more… >

Ramification of Branches and Foliage

After establishing trunk and branch structure, ramification (a fancy word for ‘branching’) of branches and foliage (as well as roots) is a key goal of bonsai. This makes a tree look older and more sophisticated, and gives the bonsai enthusiast options for continued development of the tree. Ramification is created by branching the stems. Stem […] Read more… >