Tree Talk

cleft grafting hackberry taiwanese bonsai

Grafting Hackberry, method 2

3 min read

Cleft grafting, commonly used in grafting of fruit trees, is a technique which Taiwanese Hackberry masters have adopted for use in developing incredible bonsai. In this blog post Terry Erasmus explains the steps which Master Chang Yong Zhou, in video, follows to perform these grafts.
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why plants make us feel happy.

Why plants make people happy

3 min read

Because it’s good to ‘forest bathe’ in your own home Scientists call it Biophilia, sounds a bit like a stomach illness, but apparently it’s the word used to describe the connection we feel to nature. It’s that transcendent state of being surrounded by open sky and greenery. It makes us feel happier and relaxed.
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hackberry celtis sinensis grafting bonsai

Two methods for Grafting Hackberry

4 min read

Learn how to successfully graft Hackberry (Celtis) bonsai using these two methods. Terry Erasmus visits Taiwan and is shown these reliable grafts by a Taiwanese Hackberry master. Easy to follow step by step instructions with accompanying high quality video will ensure you grasp these techniques quickly.
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japanese black pines from seed

Japanese black pine from seed, year 1

9 min read

Growing any bonsai from seed is an achievement as it is a testimony to the commitment of the grower. Japanese black pines are a particularly popular species to grow from seed and in this article Terry Erasmus shares his knowledge gained from growing this rewarding species and explains the different techniques available to you.
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bonsai tree goals 2019

8 Bonsai Goals for 2019

9 min read

Setting short and long term goals in life has so many positive benefits so why should setting goals for your bonsai passion be an exception. In this article Terry Erasmus shares 8 of his personal goals which he has generalized for a wider audience and which will hopefully serve as inspiration to you so that you too can set your own goals to achieve during the year of 2019.
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Olive bonsai post collecting tips

8 tips for post collection care of wild olives

4 min read

Wild olives or Olea europaea subsp. Africana are widely available across South Africa. Yamadori or collected specimens are especially desirable as bonsai material due to their overall maturity and characterful bark. In this article Terry Erasmus presents 8 simple to follow tips which will help ensure your collected wild olive makes a healthy transition from the veld to life in a bonsai container.
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5 tips for better juniper bonsai trees

5 Tips for better junipers

9 min read

Junipers are some of the most popular bonsai subjects around the world. In South Africa we have somewhat limited access to good material but in this article I will share 5 tips with you that I believe will help you to grow better juniper bonsai trees. From basics such as cuttings to collecting, from creating to shari to selecting a species to work with and much more.
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brett simon bending juniper bonsai trees

Bend it like Brett

6 min read

In this vlog, Terry Erasmus shadows local Cape Town bonsai artist, Brett Simon as he prepares a collected juniper for some drastic bending. Increase your confidence to do the same as Brett explains and demonstrates the process he follows to you with the aid of text, photographs and carefully narrated video.

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premna bonsai trees gary howes

Remarkable Premna Mooiensis. Part II

8 min read

In part II of Gary Howes' two part series on Premna Mooiensis, we delve deeper into the general care of this underutilized indigenous species of tree in South African bonsai. With specific focus on cultivation, defoliation, wiring, watering, diseases and fertilizing Gary addresses all the basics of what you need to know.
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viky petermann slab building bonsai ceramic pots

Slab building bonsai containers

2 min read

I have known local bonsai and ceramic artist Viky Petermann for a number of years and have come to admire her originality and the artistic flair she pours into her creations. One of her passions receiving much attention and support of late are her unique bonsai containers. Viky agreed to have me interview and video her building a basic container. 
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cork bark chinese elm cuttings bonsai

Cork bark elm cuttings the easy way

6 min read

Cuttings are a fun method of creating new bonsai. From a field grown Cork Bark Elm I recently purchased, I create 10 exciting cuttings detailing each step with text and photos for you to follow. There is also a secret which I share with you on taking cuttings of this species which will greatly enhance your chance of success.
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mark polson grafting scion juniper bonsai

Juniper Grafting with Mark Polson

3 min read

Mark Polson, a bonsai artist based in Cape Town, South Africa has a passion for Junipers. He has some of the most impressive Junipers which I have seen locally and part of his success is due to his ability to graft. Check out this blog post; watch his easy to follow video and read the accompanying text.
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