Bonsai Progress Autumn 2016


My dear Sue loves the autumn but  I am in two minds about it. I  like the colours it brings but to me it is also the harbinger of winter and I hate winter,more than I can find words to say, so I had better enjoy these few days of colour while we have them.

Above is the Hawthorn that I have had for donkeys years but which sadly has never flowered, the stray looking twig at the top is intentional as I want to create another layer of foliage above the  present leaf mass.
I also have the other Hawthorn which came from the flower bed at my daughter’s and partner’s house in Wiltshire, it had self seeded from the nearby hedge and was a straight hawthorn-jo-oct-16growth of 3 or 4 feet high which I cut down about 9 inches above the ground and kept in a large pot for a year to get going.Now after only two years I have a really nice little tree with really well reduced leaves and a reasonably good nabari.

Note that one is far more autumnal than the other and the leaves on the windswept one are quite a bit larger even though it is much old, by well over twenty five years in fact.

Let’s hope this one flowers while I am still around to enjoy it.

The eagle eyed may remember this group of Morrison supermarket  Acers, there used to be five of them but
as is often the case with Acers for no apparent reason a acer-group-oct-16couple of them just popped their clogs. They still make a colourful group but could really do with a few replacements.

Morrisons was also the source of my cascade Pyracantha which is at it’s best now. It is only two years since I spent all of two or three pounds on it. Popped it in the flower bed and let one twig just grow on and on before wiring it the next year and eventually potting it just after last pyracantha-oct-16Christmas when I had dropped some heavy hints for bonsai pots for Xmas for the old man, thanks Jo.






Come the spring I am hoping for clouds of blossom on my Fuji Cherry but even that little tree has some autumn tints to offer now and is shaping up quite well. Compare today’s tree with the tree on delivery last January








Two of those bare rooted Larches that  I bought last winter are thickening up a bit and in my minds eye I can visualise them as two aged specimens out on the moors blasted by the elements.Well that’s what is in my mind let’s hope it comes to fulfilment one day.larch-pair-oct-16

Unfortunately one has a very sturdy deep root which I will have to deal with sometime.



Another new project has been an attempt at a root over rock Cotoneaster using a small supermarket plant again which was planted in a larger pot with it’s roots wrapped round a small lias stone and held in place with cling wrap. The earth covered the stone at first and cotoneaster-root-over-oct-16was gradually lowered as time went on exposing the rock and was then repotted in this crazed pot it is in now.

Our village is built upon a Blue Lias outcrop and there are bits everywhere. Mainly in the garden making it almost impossible to dig easily


My Anniversary Acer Kashima is going through another colour change now and as you can see the leaves reduced very well after the defoliation earlier in the summeracer-kashima-oct-16

The progress of some other trees is  here in these photos,manly for my  own tree records. 

 And of course no autumn selection would be complete without my pair of Silver Birches



About Michael Cooper

Bonsai enthusiast and artist. After recording the rural scene in watercolours for over thirty years and having my own studio gallery I am now semi retired. I still sell my prints though to customers worldwide via my website and through the Somerset Crafts Gallery, Avalon Marshes Centre,Westhay nr Glastonbury BA6 9TT. The rest of the time is spent looking after my bonsai trees, I like the exercise.
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