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  Re: [Aroid-l] greenhouse questions
From: "Leo A. Martin" <leo1010 at attglobal.net> on 2004.10.04 at 12:34:04(12250)
> (What am I going to do with 2 Balsa tree saplings grown from seed in my
garden?)
"Bonsai" them. Succulent growers have learned to grow all sorts of trees
and things with fat trunks in pots with extremely heavy fall pruning. I
think balsa is in the Bombacaceae family, and these respond very well to
hard pruning and limited root room. I know people who grow Bombax,
Ceiba, and Chorisia this way in cold-winter climates. Bonsai is in
quotes because most succulent enthusiasts neither know nor follow true
bonsai pruning and shaping standards.

Dig them up now and prune very hard - to perhaps 10 inches above ground
or less. Fit the plant into a 10" or smaller pot. Overwinter cool and
almost bone-dry, just enough water to prevent shriveling.

Next spring when it warms up, put it someplace warm, and water in 10
days. Wait to water again until green nubs show. If it doesn't leaf out
after the first watering, wait until it's warmer. Grow outside during
the summer. As it cools down, hack back very hard, leaving just the
basics of a branch structure.

As the years pass the trunk will thicken tremendously.

Contact the people at the Cactus and Succulent Society of New Jersey for
more information.

C&SS OF NEW JERSEY
Founded 1959
# Members: 34
Meeting Info: Fairleigh Dickinson U/Madison Campus, TB18, Madison, NJ,
4th Sun, 2:30p.

I won't post personal contact information here, but you can get it if
you go to the site of the parent organization, the Cactus and Succulent
Society of America

http://www.cssainc.org

and click on Local Clubs in the menu at the top.

Leo

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