Bonsai show at N.C. State Fair


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Tonight my wife and I served as docents at the bonsai exhibit at the 2018 North Carolina State Fair in Raleigh. There were several nice trees and 2 National winners. We got to meet several nice people but the highlight for me was watching the amazement on kids faces when they saw the trees. They had lots of questions and a real interest in the trees. This tree is a flowering crabapple tree that the owner has been working on for 40 years. I have no idea how he gets it to bloom in the fall and have tiny apples at the same time. This tree was the children’s favorite by far.
 
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Hey do you think fruit set spray is how the flowers and fruit were set or is that a normal thing in bonsai?
 
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The last tree is a Procumbens Nana Juniper that is 25 years old. I had one that got damaged by hurricane Florence and brought it to this tree’s owner. After a half hour of instruction the tree looked better than before the storm. I think some of these people have a magic wand in their tool kit.
 
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Hey do you think fruit set spray is how the flowers and fruit were set or is that a normal thing in bonsai?
It is not normal. I suspect it has something to do with temperature and sunlight. Some trees are fooled into dormancy and their growing seasons can be manipulated. My investigation will continue. ️‍
 
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Fertilome fruit set spray is made of cytokinins is why I was curious. Cultural practice and natural cycle have to be favorable, surely. I have been reading on phytohormones lately and that little apple seemed a candidate for a little extra manipulation.
 

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Man -those are so cool. I envy the skill set required to grow that kind of beauty.
And the time! 40 years! Don't think I can keep anything of those beauty alive for 4 months .. unless it is a privet! :LOL:
 
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And the time! 40 years! Don't think I can keep anything of those beauty alive for 4 months .. unless it is a privet! :LOL:
Privet makes excellent bonsai material. The Europeans are especially fond of using it. Some of the old hedges that are removed are trimmed to bonsai.
 
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Wow, they're very impressive! I can see why your kids liked the crab apple so much. I'd love to give bonsai a go sometime, one of these days...
 

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Bonsai is even bigger in Japan and China! It's originated from either of the country.
 
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Bonsai is believed to have originated in China in about the second century. Later the Japanese took over as the best bonsai masters. It was the Japanese that created the styles and names of the different types of bonsai. Any plant can be made into a bonsai as long as it follows the design rules. In America we tend to bend those rules in the name of art. Entry #7 above received several negative comments that it wasn’t true bonsai. It also received many favorable comments and will most likely win the people’s choice award at the end of the fair.
 

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