FWBBS will hold their bonsai auction on 18 Jun 2016.
The date was changed after the Newsletter 'went to press'.
April - Another Busy Month
by Lee Vanderpool
April activities include: spraying insecticide if any critters are spotted feeding on the new growth of your bonsai or fungicide if black spots suddenly appear on the new leaves of your trees. Spraying your trees with dormant oil spray is still a good idea. It will keep some insects at bay such as aphids and thrips.
(Note: Below 80 degrees, you can still use Volck Oil. For warmer weather, use a light weight summer oil. ed)
We had a warmer than usual winter then, when spring finally arrived, the weather turned cooler. Trees are still confused with azaleas bloom- ing out of season and leaves which should be fully formed still in the swollen bud stage. Maybe by the time summer arrives, things will be straightened out and tree development will be on-track.
Ted Matson gave a new slant on juniper development. It seems that current thinking on pinching and pruning junipers has changed to pinch out ALL immature foliage and leave only mature foliage on the trees. This will theoretically force the tree to put out only mature foliage and any immature foliage generated should be eliminated. It is worth the time to see if this procedure works for you. Try it on one or two of your junipers and, if it works, continue with the remainder of the junipers.
Fertilizing your trees is of major importance right now. Most trees are developing the major portion of their yearly growth and it should be encouraged by applying a balanced fertilizer or applying organic fertilizer balls or cakes to each pot.
Watering is also of major importance. Although wet weather has predominated this spring, once warmer weather arrives and spring rains end, you must very carefully observe the water needs of your trees. If a bonsai misses being watered even for a single day and hot, drying winds occur, the bonsai is in jeopardy of losing its viability. If a tree becomes wilted from lack of moisture, do not drench it with cold water. Instead, sprinkle it with warm (not hot) water a few times for a couple of hours then water thoroughly. Shocking the plant with abundant cold water while it is not capable of taking the water into its tissues may seriously damage the plant. Slow, methodical resuscitation is the preferred method of treatment.
Remember, this is a critical time of the year for your bonsai. Take care of them now and they will reward you for the rest of the year.