Five weeks ago I pruned and defoliated the chojubai below (see “Cutback on a white chojubai” for details). The tree produced buds right away, and within a few weeks, it was covered with flower buds.
White chojubai four weeks after defoliation
I took photos every few days to catch the tree in “peak bloom” but found I liked the tree best when the buds were just starting to open.
Chojubai flower buds
Here’s the tree two days later.
Flowers 30% open
Two weeks later, most of the flowers were spent, but new buds were still emerging. It was a good time to remove all of the flowers so the new leaves could receive more light. If I don’t pluck them in time, the tree gets covered in fruit that redirects resources away from the branches I want to develop.
Just past “peak bloom”
After removing the flowers – 9.5″
I don’t expect so many flowers to appear with the next flush of growth, but I’ll be sure to enjoy whatever shows up when they do.
New episode on the Bonsai Wire Podcast: conversation with an apprentice in Japan!
Join Adam Toth, an American apprentice studying bonsai at Taiga Urushibata’s garden in Shizuoka, Japan, and me, for a conversation about apprentice life in the newest episode of the Bonsai Wire Podcast. Adam breaks down a typical day and shares humorous stories of how hard it can be to keep everyone happy in a garden filled with small trees.
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