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Yamadori: Do and Don’t when Collecting in the Mountain

Yamadori: Do and Don’t when Collecting in the Mountain

Most of bonsai lover have already known the term yamadori which is referring to one of bonsai techniques. In Japanese, yamadori means collecting bonsai tree in the mountain; yama is mountain and dori are collecting. Therefore, yamadori means collecting and caring from mountains.

When collecting trees in the mountains, you cannot just grab any tree; it has to be dwarf or naturally small in size tree. So, forget about the skyrocket trees because it is clearly forbidden to cut the off.

However, whether it is small or big size tree, you have to have permission from the local authority. Without the permission, you will be considered trespass other people’s property and it will give you troubles such as prosecution or theft.

Be it private or institutional property, they will think you are out of your mind if you are wandering around their land with a shovel in hand. Therefore, it is strongly advised to ask for permission; you can make such kind of proposal which explain your intention and also attach pictures of your bonsai.

yamadoribonsai02Some people will get you a deal like they want you to clean up their land and in return you can keep some dwarf tree for your yamadori bonsai.

After getting the permission, you cannot just take any kinds of trees; there are rules to obey.

Consider the season; most of every plant is sensitive about season, weather and climate. In general, you cannot dig tree in summer when the temperature is very hot because it can bring the tree to death.

For trees such as larches, pines, and junipers, spring is the best time, especially during the first week. The mountain pines can be successfully dug in September or October because they stop their growth process. They will start growing at the beginning of autumn. You can employ the same estimation to another deciduous tree.

Besides considering the season, there are few more things to remember before you start to find your tree. You should have at least horticultural knowledge because your excitement towards mountain tree can bring them to death.

The climate and temperature switch, the different humidity, soil condition, as well as loss of root and leaves, and many more can make the three stress out and prone to die. To get a more stable tree, you can find one in steep hill or hollows than the one in the nutritious soil since the hill tree has more solid root.

To make you easier caring for yamadori bonsai, make sure to collect tree which has a high chance to live such as the one with good root condition. So, you will not waste your time wandering around the mountain for the unhealthy tree.


Read: Ginseng bonsai, care and growing tips

Yamadori bonsai

Yamadori bonsai can be a very artistic bonsai due to its natural small size and shape. Even though it is hard to get one tree in the mountain; it will pay off when you succeed in growing one.

If you are bonsai lover and want to try yamadori bonsai, here are some steps for your guidance.

1. Ask for permission

Before start any digging activity, make sure you get permission from the local authority, be it personal or institutional property. Otherwise, you can get yourself into trouble for trespassing or stealing other property.

2. Digging up

After get the permission and find the right tree, then dig up the soil around it with shovel or spade. You should be very careful not to destroy the roots.

3. Wrap the root

When you have dug up, lift the tree as well as the root carefully and put it in a sheet. You can use the moisturized sheet and this tree should be placed in the pot as soon as you get home.

4. Bring some soil home

Direct changing of soil condition is not good for the tree; therefore you should bring some soil home to make your own soil mixture.

5. Plant it

Once you get home, plant the tree in a large pot as soon as possible. You should choose the large pot with good drainage hole; then put the tree and the soil. You can use your own mixture soil with the original soil.

6. Water

Finally, water the yamadori bonsai a good amount of water and make sure not disturb the soil.

Other smart tips that you can do while digging up the tree is do not just leave the hole. You can bring some seed and plant it in the digging hole in replace to the one that you take.

Also, do not leave your trash behind. Bring some garbage bag and bring your trash with you; if it is possible you can also pick the other garbage. Surely, you should only take what you need and leave the native plants. It is better for you and the planet.

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