Red Japanese Maple Seedlings Turning Green?

lpenguinMay 25, 2006

I have a Red Japanese Maple seedling that I'm growing as a bonsai, but the red leaves are turning green. This happened last year with another Japanese Maple seedling before it died. I can't seem to figure out why this is happening. Any suggestions? Thanks!

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lucy(6)

You haven't described any of the conditions under which it is living, or how you're taking care of it, and it's hard to advise without knowing those.

    Bookmark   May 26, 2006 at 5:47AM
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lpenguin

Sorry! I'm pretty new to this. It's in a peat moss soil mixture, about 1" deep, indoors in partial sunlight, and I water it thoroughly whenever the soil is dry. It's a seedling I found growing in my yard and repotted in a container.

    Bookmark   May 26, 2006 at 10:42PM
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rjj1(Norman OK Zone7)

You will kill the maple treating it as a houseplant. It's an outdoor tree period.

A seedling in a 1 inch deep pot will never develop into anything of value even if you could keep it alive indoors.

Bonsai is not sticking twigs in bonsai pots, it's taking established plants with potential and developing them over time to grow in shallow containers. It would do much better in a deep container outdoors in shade for the time being.

Since you don't mention where you live any more advice than this won't be of much help.

Good luck.

randy

    Bookmark   May 27, 2006 at 10:14AM
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lucy(6)

Peat moss is not good for maples - they like sandy, gritty, very fast draining stuff, and watering when the top is dry is way too often. And rij1, could you try to be a little less arrogant and a little more helpful - did you spring into bonsai a full fledged expert with no help from anyone? Geez!

    Bookmark   May 27, 2006 at 11:13AM
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rjj1(Norman OK Zone7)

I love you too Lucy :-).

It's very helpful to be told what one is doing wrong. My post might have been a little on the short side because of time restarints, but it was to the point and helpful. If he was to do some research outside of what I shared with him, he would find it's accurate.

I guess one could type 2 or 3 large paragraphs gently nudging him in the right direction. Why don't you jump on that instead of ragging my bedside manor :-).

I know nothing about being an expert, but I did have a few people around that were helpful with short, to the point, helpful information when I first started putting twigs in bonsai pots.

You of all people shouldn't be hammering someone about how information is shared. Geez :-)!

randy

    Bookmark   May 27, 2006 at 11:39AM
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rjj1(Norman OK Zone7)

lpenguin

If you find my post belittling, that was not my intention and I ask forgiveness. I don't hang out here to rip beginners and if you do a search here, you'll find that to be true.

You might also find I take Lucy to task on numerous occasions for giving silly advice :-). That's why she has decided to treat me like a stepchild. Oh well, I am a big boy and have semi-wide shoulders. If I can take it at home, I can surely take it from dear Lucy:-)

randy

    Bookmark   May 27, 2006 at 11:49AM
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lpenguin

Thanks very much to both of you. I have made the changes and hopefully will have better luck. The help is greatly appreciated!

If you happen to know, I am just curious about why it matters whether the plant is indoors or out (I live in upstate New York). I was keeping it indoors because we have rabbits and woodchucks who snack on my plants.

    Bookmark   May 27, 2006 at 12:54PM
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rjj1(Norman OK Zone7)

lpenguin

It's simply a matter of doing what's best to succeed. One doesn't take a Nile crocodile and release it in the Arctic ocean or then take a Polar bear and release it on the Nile. In neither instance will either survive or any given time. The reptile will freeze in short order and the Polar bear is unsuited and unable to cope with it's new surroundings. Zoos have to mimic native conditions to be successful with any species.

You have to do that with plants also. Certain plants come from environments that can be adequately mimicked indoors. Tropicals fit into that category. Hardy trees that live in temperate climates experience many types of changing weather conditions and thrive in them. Spring, summer, fall, winter, and all the good and nasty weather involved with those seasons. It needs all of those things to thrive and be healthy. Taking a maple and moving it indoors deprives it of all those nesassary weather changes it needs to survive, the big one being a dormant rest called winter.

Indoors usually means stagnant air, no humidity, no wind to help build strength in the plant, and no winter rest. Try going 24/7 for a year and see how you feel:-)

I grow my plants on benches to lessen herbivore pruning.

randy

    Bookmark   May 27, 2006 at 1:28PM
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gdr41(pa. z6)

If the people giving advise here knew anything about japanese red leaf they would have told you all red leaf grown from seed turn green mid summer.They are only red in spring and fall. Only grafted starts will stay red year round. Buy a good bonsai book, you'll learn more and you don't have this B.S.

    Bookmark   June 25, 2006 at 2:30PM
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rjj1(Norman OK Zone7)

gdr41

Thank goodness we have a wonderfully friendly and knowledgeable person like yourself to inform us of our folly.

Thanks

randy

    Bookmark   June 25, 2006 at 3:15PM
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brendan_of_bonsai(4b AK)

gdr41, I think you could have made that post without insulting everyone else, maybe not though, I don't recall anyone saying they knew anything about red japanese maples, just about maples in generaly, do you disagree with any of the arguments that they put forth?

    Bookmark   June 25, 2006 at 5:14PM
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rjj1(Norman OK Zone7)

It seemed more important at the time to encourage our young friend to get his maple outside where he had some chance of success in keeping it alive than giving him a dissertation on genetics and the art of grafting.

randy

    Bookmark   June 25, 2006 at 5:25PM
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lucy(6)

The reason maples need to live outside is because they are 'hardy' trees, which means they need 2-3 mos. of below freezing weather to renew their sap and other components for spring growth. It's called dormancy, and anything native to the north needs it, so don't try to grow 'outdoor' trees inside... only tropicals.

    Bookmark   June 25, 2006 at 6:23PM
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deiscorides

"Bonsai is not sticking twigs in bonsai pots," - rjj1

LOL IÂve been doing that exact thing for a few years now. I call them cuttings. :-P

    Bookmark   July 1, 2006 at 1:15PM
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mrpearson253

Wow...quite a difference from the Plumeria forum of which I am a part. Not sure if that's a good thing. Are all the other forums this harsh to newbies? I'm no bonsai expert, and have never claimed to be...just checking things out because I have a Japanese Maple bonsai that is having troubles of its own.

    Bookmark   May 19, 2007 at 2:01PM
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lucy(6)

Sorry, you just happened to run into a confluence of idiots (me included) who all decided to pick on your post at the same time to show off how fast they could answer (accuracy apparently was not always the issue!), but you were never the target. Do try again sometime and hopefully things will be better. How's your tree doing BTW?

    Bookmark   May 19, 2007 at 2:44PM
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