Ghost Bonsai

stoneys_fatali(9b Duarte,Ca.)July 1, 2014

So I found this picture online (hope the owner doesn't mind me using it for points in this thread) of a Bhut that he has made into a Bonsai Tree. My Bhut is in the same container believe it or not just blue.
I have removed the bottom leaves and will include his photo than mine. My question is, how do you get the trunk thick like this? Just age? Mine leans a little too and wish it was straight like his.
Anyway, just a little project I'm working on :-)
I'll keep you updated here.

Mine:

His:

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esox07 (4b)

Yah, that's my Pepper. Keep in mind that that picture was taken late in the season after I pruned it back and repotted it for over wintering. When you repot your plant, then ensure it is straight at the time of repotting. Also, keep in mind that the plant will probably lose most of its foliage soon after repotting and bringing inside. It won't thrive indoors but will require regular pruning throughout the winter. It will then take off again the following spring when you get it outside. The stem on your plant will be nice and woody by the end of the summer.
Good luck,
Bruce

    Bookmark   July 1, 2014 at 11:34PM
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stoneys_fatali(9b Duarte,Ca.)

Thanks Bruce! Should I still overwinter it in Southern California where winter temps don't get too cold but we are expecting a lot of rain this winter so might be a good idea.
Yeah, my plant has a very nice "Y"!
How often do you water an indoor overwintered plant?

Stoney

    Bookmark   July 1, 2014 at 11:46PM
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esox07 (4b)

If you can keep it outside, that is probably better as long as temps wont get much below 40 at night. It will probably lose its foliage completely if it starts getting down to 40, but it should fire right back up when the temps start rising again later in the winter.

Growing them indoors is the only way we can do it in most other places in the US. I inevitably wind up with an Aphid infestation every time I bring peppers in for overwintering. I have to use insecticidal soap for several days straight to kill them off. Then they are gone for the rest of the winter. The plants won't stay nice and lush indoors either. They will initially lose most of their leaves but then start sending out new growth that you will have to prune back several times during the winter to keep them from getting out of control. But the new growth isn't real lush like summer growth unless you can keep them in a place that they get a lot of good light throughout the day.
You will want to water far less indoors during the winter. Maybe once every couple of weeks or less depending on the soil type and size of pot.
Bruce

    Bookmark   July 1, 2014 at 11:56PM
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toolstack

How do you make insecticidal soap?

    Bookmark   July 2, 2014 at 11:21AM
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kentishman

I don't know how to make it, but I've used the commercially made Safer soap to control aphids with good success.

    Bookmark   July 2, 2014 at 11:36AM
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esox07 (4b)

You mix soap with water basically. i know some people use dish washing soap like DAWN. I have used my wifes home made soap with excellent results. I cant really tell you the correct amounts of soap to water but it doesn't have to be a whole lot. For first time users, you should probably just buy a commercially made product. I found it in Home Depot.
Ortho makes a version that worked great for me several years ago.
Bruce

Here is a link that might be useful: Insecticidal soap at home depot

    Bookmark   July 2, 2014 at 11:53AM
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woohooman

You can make your own with REAL soap. Castile, Fels Naptha, An Ivory BAR(not dishwashing liquid). What your looking for on the ingredients list are fatty acids such as sodium tallowate, sodium cocoate, etc. No chemicals.

What I do is take a bar of Ivory and grate it with a micro planer, place in a gallon container, and add tepid water. Must be neutral water so if you have hard water, distilled is an option. Give a stir and set on shelf for a couple days. When you want to make some, you want it to be a 1-2% solution, so 2.5-5 TB per gallon of water(neutral).

Most people use commercial stuff, as mentioned. Or they use castile, which is already liquified and sold in pints/qts. I can't find it anywhere but online though.

As with all pesticides, do not spray when temps are over 80F or the sum of the temp and humidity is >140. Best to spray in the evening and rinse the plants in the morn.

Kevin

This post was edited by woohooman on Wed, Jul 2, 14 at 14:59

    Bookmark   July 2, 2014 at 2:57PM
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scott123456(5)

I used a mixture of ivory soap (white liquid stuff in a bottle) isopropyl alcohol, garlic, and water. Sprayed down my plants really good (dripping) make sure you get everywhere (I even sprayed the dirt a little). I sprayed the pot too under the lip and everything and wiped it also. I repeated the process a couple of times before I brought them inside. Never saw one bug in my house (neither did my wife and trust me she was looking) and the plants didnâÂÂt seem to mind.

    Bookmark   July 3, 2014 at 12:53AM
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