A bonsai display allows a viewer to see all of the important features of a particular type of tree or plant in one place. It does so by placing the tree at a height that makes it look like a full-size tree. This ancient art form has been around for over a thousand years. One of the best spiritual benefits of growing a bonsai tree is connecting with its creative side. With proper techniques, it can encourage its natural growth. A variety of containers can be used to house the bonsai, including a large growing box. These can house multiple trees and provide a great volume of soil to encourage root growth. Training boxes are also used to prepare the tree for formal presentation.
The Hedera Helix
Hedera helix is commonly known as English ivy or European ivy. This perennial plant, can grow on walls, fences, and is a common sight in gardens and wild areas.
Hedera helix is an evergreen plant that can grow to a height of up to 30 meters and is commonly grown as a groundcover. It climbs by means of aerial rootlets that are covered with thick mats of mat. Hedera helix has been used for making bonsai and some of the varieties are Hedera Helix “Irish Lace” and Hedera helix “Shamrock”. Other examples also include ‘Flamenco’ and ‘Midget’.
The leaves are alternate, 50 to 100 mm long, and have a 15–20 mm petiole. They are either cordate or five-lobed juvenile leaves on climbing stems or unlobed adult leaves that are on fertile flowering stems. The flowers are produced from summer to late autumn and are small, individually-shaped umbels that are greenish-yellow and rich in nectar. The fruit are purple-black or orange-yellow and ripen in late winter. Ivy has alternate 3-5 lobed leaves in a variety of colours. At the beginning of its growth, it produces minute hairy young shoots. As it gets older, it produces entire broad leaves.
Styles of Hedera Helix Bonsai Tree
There are a number of styles that can be adapted to work with ivies. Some of these include the informal upright, semi-cascade, and full cascade.
- The informal upright has a main trunk that has soft curves, and its branches have curves as well. The primary branch should have a diameter that’s closer to the main trunk than the secondary branch. The third branch should be positioned at the back of the tree so that the composition is not too shallow. The other branches should be shorter as they go up the tree.
- The slant style is a type of hair style that involves the trunk being leaned at an angle, with a branch on one side and a shorter branch on the other. It has a triangular shape.
- The semi-cascade style of bonsai has the main trunk extending below the rim of the pot. This means that the branch does not fall below the pot’s bottom. In the full cascade, the main trunk is raised to the height of the pot.
- The full cascade style of bonsai has a long, cascading trunk with opposing branches. It has curves in the trunk and the tips upward to reach the sun.
Varieties of Hedera Helix
- Hedera helix ‘Gold Child’– The gold-coloured variegation on ‘Gold Child’s’ leaves has three to five lobes with a rounded tip. It is a great contrast to the pale green variegation on other plants. This variegated ivy has a great houseplant that makes long runners. It can also be used to make an outdoor ivy. It has been known to thrive in cold weather and is often used to plant in colder areas.
- Hedera helix ‘Shamrock’– This plant has upright growth and is self-branching. It has a light green new leaf that makes it look like it’s in sunshine. It is very trouble free.
- edera helix ‘Icicle’ – The leaves are long and have irregularly lobed leaves. These leaves have a variegation pattern that His unusual for this type of plant. It has a green margin with a grey center.
- Hedera helix ‘Coon Hollow’ – These leaves are mainly three lobed and have a terminal lobe that is 2 to 3 times longer than the basal lobes. They are mainly long and narrow. This ivy has a greenish blue base with silver grey over the main veins. It is a year-round plant. It has a slow growing habit and is suitable for most conditions.
- Hedera helix ‘Ellen Meakin’ – The leaves are similar to that of ‘Ivalace’, though they have raised veins and a rounded base. They have petioles that are twice as long as the leaf blade. The adventitious buds are located at the base of the leaf. These are wonderful plants to propagate because they will grow into plants that are their own right. They are also known as stem fascinations. This type of ivy has a clumping structure that does not have climbing shoots or trailing stems. It is also unique in that it does not have adventitious roots.
- Hedera helix ‘Yumin’– The variegation is gold margined with an irregular green center. It has major veins that are pale green. This ivy is self-branching. The leaves have a cordate base with a heart-shaped shape. They have a small recess at the base of the leaf. The overall size is larger than Wichtel.
How Long does it take to grow Hedera Helix
It takes 2-5 years to reach its ultimate height. Most Hedera helix prefer semi-shade, but can also grow in shade. It thrives on full sun in temperate climates.
How to Plant and Grow
To successfully grow a plant for bonsai, look for varieties with small leaves and branchlets. They should also have thick roots at the base. Once established, the plant will not grow much bigger as long as the soil is only a few tablespoons. A plant that has a naturally upright growth habit can make an upright trunk. A trained trunk can be made with a copper or aluminium wire wrapped around a copper or aluminium pole. It is then held in place until it has a thick trunk. Remove before the trunk can get harmed due to marks.
A soil that has a moisture-holding capacity is ideal for keeping a bonsai tree growing. It can also be used to nourish the plant by giving it monthly fertilizer applications. When planting in the garden, remember to plant the ivies deep and remove the lower leaves. They will then root along the new stem to allow the new plant to establish.
How to Care
When the leaves are down, they get a lot of sun. If you have planted in January, then by February, they will start to wake up. They can only go in the sun after they have gotten used to the strong light outside. This will help prevent the soil from getting on the rugs and the clippings. It’s also important to cut the branches and leaves that are too big.
After the tree has been removed from its pot, the soil is cleaned off, and the roots are trimmed back. A layer of new soil is then added around the tree’s roots. Put the moss on the pot and leave it in a warm pan for a couple of hours. The tree is then placed on a bench and stays there until it comes back in the fall. Spider mites, parasitoids, aphids, and leafspot are some of problems to look out for. Although your tree can live for many years, it needs regular care to keep itself healthy. Experiencing regular maintenance is a must for a healthy tree. When you care for a bonsai tree, you develop a mindset of a benevolent ally. For a special occasion, a bonsai is a beautiful reminder that all things are resilient and can grow strong and healthy.
Why consider Bonsai?
When placed in their home or office, bonsai plants purify the air. They also help in maintaining a good health and relieve stress. Proper care and maintenance of bonsai plants are important to their longevity. They require regular water and fertilizer to keep them healthy. Bonsai plants are great stress relievers for people. Indoor plants help keep humidity levels in check.
You’ll also have to learn new techniques in order to achieve the desired effect. This can be done by training in ropes, scaffolding, or structural pruning. This discipline helps develop self-reliance and confidence. It’s similar to the tree’s natural state, and it’s taught by experienced teachers. Each new creature that you encounter is a reminder of how capable and resilient you are. As you become a better caregiver, keep trying to remain open and curious. A well-placed bonsai can bring the natural world into the smallest of spaces. It can also help those with limited space to interact with it. While it’s not an art form, bonsai is a way to cultivate an awareness of our inner reactions to the world around us.