I guess I should be worried?

Discussion in 'Maples' started by Luke’s Maples, Mar 15, 2020.

  1. zfrittz

    zfrittz Active Member

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    Hello, I just wanted to comment that years ago when I dedicated myself to growing maples, the very weak and delicate maples were always grown in 100% akadama from 4 to 6 mm, or 70% akadama 30% kiryuzuna which was the only way to grow them. for years and they were fed with compost balls that were placed on top of the soil and we never had root or fungus problems.
    I still use 1/4 or 1/3 of akadama in all my maples, although it is expensive, it is like life insurance that has to be paid, and much more where I live and with the temperatures that I have to fight in the summer to keep my maples.
    I propose you grow a maple of the most delicate you have and grow it in akadama and see the result.
    Another thing that we did, during the first two months we applied that once every 20 days 4Ml of GRO-ROOT liquid x 10 liters of water, which greatly strengthens the roots.

    This is the formula we mixed, although any rooting hormone works but adapting the measures.

    Isopropyl alcohol 36.67 % Water 61.64 % Indole-3-butyric acid 1.03 % napthalene acetic acid 0.66 %
     
  2. Acerholic

    Acerholic Contributor Forums Moderator Maple Society

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    Hi, zfrittz, that's different to what I have done over the years. I use John innes no2 , bark, peat and horticultural grit. I dont feed my young grafts until they are about 4 years old. I've had about 80% success so far.
    I have not heard of Akadama, is this specific to your area?
    The root grow solution is a good idea, I will try it on a few of mine in the coming weeks. I've always used a michroriasil for mine with quite good root growth. Thanks for the information. (Keep safe).
     
  3. Acerholic

    Acerholic Contributor Forums Moderator Maple Society

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    Further to your last I've just read up on akadama, Bonsai mix. Yes very expensive if you have a lot of grafts.
     
  4. zfrittz

    zfrittz Active Member

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    akadama is a granular clay of volcanic origin found only in Japan.
     

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  5. zfrittz

    zfrittz Active Member

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    Only for very delicate maples
     
  6. Acerholic

    Acerholic Contributor Forums Moderator Maple Society

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    Hi fritz, they are all a bit precious if we are honest.
     
  7. zfrittz

    zfrittz Active Member

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    The akadama has no organic matter. Here are some photos of the akadama in my maples.
     

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  8. Acerholic

    Acerholic Contributor Forums Moderator Maple Society

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    Very healthy looking plants. I will definitely give it a try this year. Always good to try something new!!
     
  9. zfrittz

    zfrittz Active Member

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    Try it and surely you will repeat it, and when you pick up the transplant and see the roots, you will tell me.
    Another little secret if you have a small plant and want it to grow, plant it in a fruit drainer, the problem is that you will have to fertilize and water a lot, but the growth can double.
    so are the ones I use.
     

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  10. Acerholic

    Acerholic Contributor Forums Moderator Maple Society

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    Yes I will try this together with my old method to do a comparison. Never thought of using a fruit strainer, interesting!!!
     
  11. zfrittz

    zfrittz Active Member

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    more water more oxygen more fertilizer = more growth
     
  12. Acerholic

    Acerholic Contributor Forums Moderator Maple Society

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    Exactly as they grow naturally in the volcanic areas of Japan. Nature knows best!!!
     
  13. zfrittz

    zfrittz Active Member

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    When Japanese masters like Kunio Kobayashi and Masaiko Kimura always cultivate with akadama....
    for something must be
     
  14. AlainK

    AlainK Rising Contributor Forums Moderator Maple Society 10 Years

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    I use Akadama for my bonsai mix, between 30% to 90%, but the price prohibits using it for "potted trees" : over 15€ for 15 litres, or so. Since I belong to a bonsai club, we can have discounts, but other than for trees in a small pot/tray (bonsai), other soils are much more suitable.

    What's more after three or four years, it disintegrates and just forms a compact paste, just like plain clay, exactly the contrary of what the roots need.

    So, unless you want to repot all your trees every 2 or 3 years at a very high price, forget about Akadama. Pumice, lava rock, etc. are much more adapted to a collection of maples in big pots.

    PS : stay at home ;^)
     
  15. emery

    emery Generous Contributor Maple Society 10 Years

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    I use about 50% pozzolan, actually from the same source as Alain (and I know about the source, thanks to Alain!) which I had a cubic meter delivered some years ago. Great stuff, cheap, and the maples love it. I experimented with akadama but as Alain mentions, too expensive for regular potted maples.
     
  16. LoverOfMaples

    LoverOfMaples Active Member

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    Nicely put AlainK. I only use it for my bonsai.
     
  17. zfrittz

    zfrittz Active Member

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    I recommend akadama and kiryuzuna for very delicate trees, (for their price), during their first 2 or 3 years, to create a strong root system, and in my experience I have tried all types of materials, pomice, shale, clay, pine bark, coconut, blonde peat etc. and the best is the akadama by far, this has its drawbacks, you have to transplant every 2 years, and with irrigation and fertilizer you have to be very careful because it dries very quickly, (in summer I water them at least 4 or 5 times ) but in return we have the best root system to establish a strong development, and a root has never rotted.
    Alaink, I wanted to make a clarification, if the akadama that you use in 3 or 4 years disintegrates, it is not of quality, that is noticeable when you wet a akadama grain and crush it between your fingers, inside it must have a small Volcanic stone, if you don't have it, is akadama made in Japan by firing granulated clay, which is the majority of the akadama that is commercialized.
    In the previous photo of the thickest maple, in a red square pot, the akadama is seen without disintegrating, and it can be 8 or 9 years old without transplanting or changing the land.
    Too bad that kind of akadama is very difficult to get, and I don't know if it will continue to be marketed.

    Whoever uses it for bonsai, can try to plant several seedlings of the same size with different lands and the akadama is sure to create a better root system.
     
  18. AlainK

    AlainK Rising Contributor Forums Moderator Maple Society 10 Years

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    This is the one I use, available in different sizes :

    Akadama.jpg
     
  19. Acerholic

    Acerholic Contributor Forums Moderator Maple Society

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    Just looked it up , not too bad a price. Obviously depends on the amount of maples one is doing. I do repot every two years and keep grafts only for 4 years in pots, so any breakdown of the akadama is not a problem. I'm going to give it a try as an initial experiment alongside my tried method. Regarding watering any maple enthusiast is very prudent on this so not a problem imo.
     
  20. AlainK

    AlainK Rising Contributor Forums Moderator Maple Society 10 Years

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    What about "Terra preta" ?

    ;^)
     
  21. Acerholic

    Acerholic Contributor Forums Moderator Maple Society

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    I've heard of charcoal added compost from friends many years ago. (Vegatable growers). Never tried it, but now you reccomend it I will look at a supplier in the UK. Believe a company in Devon do this and trade it under a different name.
     
  22. zfrittz

    zfrittz Active Member

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    I have always used charcoal in the bottom of juniperus chinensis pots, and I have always understood that it is so that the substrate does not become acidic over time and remains neutral, so I have never used it on maples.
     
  23. Acerholic

    Acerholic Contributor Forums Moderator Maple Society

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    Ok thanks for that zfrittz. Its called Biochar from Devon in this country. I will do more research before using.
     
  24. zfrittz

    zfrittz Active Member

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    The biochar I understand that it is simply compost of organic matter to which vegetable carbon is added.
     
  25. Acerholic

    Acerholic Contributor Forums Moderator Maple Society

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    Hmm interesting, as I said earlier my old way has 80% success rate. But possibly not the root growth that you have achieved. As I cannot purchase anything at the moment or possibly for a few months, I will research this. Thankyou for posting this to give some new thoughts on potting delicate maples.
     

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