The trouble with bonsai is that everything takes so long to achieve, but then that’s what we love about it. After all there is very little satisfaction in achieving anything that is easy. Without wishing to sound maudlin most everything I have ever done has been difficult. Maybe that’s because of my lack of talent, maybe it’s because I set myself too high a standards or maybe that’s just how the world is. I am no philosopher and leave the deciphering of these things to others and as we say in these parts, ‘just keep a troshin’.
In order to make the creation of bonsai a little easier I have spent the last twenty five years figuring out better ways to do things including improving the growth rate of plants in pots as we grow them. Back in the day a bit of garden soil, grit and leaf mould and an occasional dash of Phostrogen was all that we were told was required. However we have come a long way from that and just look at the results. Comparing the average bonsai of today to those of thirty years ago is quite an eye opener. Part of that equation is obviously fertilisers and what we have today is vastly superior to what we had years ago. It’s not that the technology has changed, after all plants still grow exactly as they did since the beginning. The difference is that today we can tailor our fertilising regimen very closely to the plants needs in relation both to what we want to achieve and what the plant needs to make that happen. This is all such a fiendishly complex area that much of modern science is still a bit in the dark. However little by little there is an understanding beginning to emerge.
As a mad bonsai gardener I want to see my trees grow to the best of their ability and because they are all so dammed expensive I want to see them do well but am not prepared to just throw something into the soil hoping for the best. As a business owner what I want to be able to offer my customers is simple solutions to complex problems, after all most of us do not want to have to go back to school and become amateur scientists just to grow a few bonsai trees. On the other hand it’s quite hard for most of us to trust the producers and purveyors of products these days on account of all being up to our necks in hyperbole and bullshit. After all WHO can trust an industry which came up with such an equivocation as ‘plant food’.
Over the last two years I have been working on a couple of new Green Dream products. Green Dream has, after more than twenty five years, become the UK’s most popular bonsai fertilising product selling many tons every year. We think it offers the best value for money whilst categorically NOT containing ANY SHIT in any form. We KNOW it’s the best product of it’s kind available because we have, and continue to, test it alongside all it’s competitors. Green Dream gives the best results in the safest form for the best price, No SHIT! However as the process of developing bonsai goes, it’s very hard to offer one product that does it all. Plants have different nutritional requirements at different times of the year and at different stages of their development and to that end I have been testing and developing various elements in order to create a couple of entirely new products which, finally, are now available.
Green Dream™ Nitro + is a high nitrogen (15%) natural organic fertiliser with the full spectrum of nutrients but higher in organic nitrogen than the other products in the Green Dream range. Perfect for developing raw material and yamadori and increasing the growth rate of all your plants. Traditionally used in spring and early summer high nitrogen feeds produce good firm growth. If you need to see rapid dynamic growth of any potted plant this is the ONLY product you will need. For further details follow the link above.
Green Dream™ Soil Source Micro-Biological Soil Additive is an exciting new product that we have developed over the last few years. This is a ground breaking microbial soil additive product unlike anything else available that is simply added to your chosen soil mix or growing media at repotting time. The product, which on the face of it looks like our Green Dream Original product (small dry crumbs), is packed with beneficial micro-organisms like Trichoderma harzianum which are very well documented as being supremely beneficial to the cultivation of plants and the development of roots in horticulture. In the last two years we added this unique new product to well in excess of four hundred repotted plants at various stages of bonsai development. The results were surprising to say the least. Every plant has thrived, regardless of the growing media or species involved, every plant started growing much earlier than normal and much more strongly and once good growth was under way we noticed a significant improvement in the plants uptake of nutrients from fertilizers with improved growth rate, foliage colour and robust appearance. Over the summer period we also saw a dramatic reduction in problems with pest and disease reducing our use of chemical sprays by over 75%. For further details follow the link above.
Green Dream™ dry fertiliser products in large pack sizes are currently available with a half kilo free of charge as we have changed the pack sizes for buckets from 7Kg to 7.5Kg at no additional cost whilst current stocks last.
Shame we cant get it shipped to OZ.
I’m glad you take up the burden of dispelling these common misconceptions of horticulture. “Plant food” is one of the most common and pervasive misunderstandings of science I’ve ever encountered. I’m a professional nurseryman (specialized in 4gal. potted roses) in the US and the amount of consumer products I see labeled with boldfaced lies, pseudoscience, and unrealistic claims is staggering. I don’t mean to sound condescending but I think this originates from the lower intellectual requirements for horticulture. It’s highly accessible to many people – but the benefit of being practicable by all means the average practitioner (gardener, landscaper, bonsai enthusiasts) doesn’t have a very strong educational background in horticulture, botany, or science in general. They see a product promise “blooms so big you’ll wet your pants looking at them” or the plant will be “so strong aphids and mites will just drop dead off the plant” and don’t have the intellectual tools to challenge these claims.
Particularly, as modern roses require a heavy chemical arsenal to keep them perfectly clean and happy, I see a lot of bad pesticide type products available to consumers. Like granular ground fertilizers containing a triazole fungicide advertised as preventing major foliar spot fungi. The roses are not able to take up enough tebuconazole and concentrate it in the leaves to be effective. All they’re really doing is killing the mychorrizal fungi and sterilizing the soil of all beneficial organisms. Even worse these combo products will contain a neonicotinoid to be taken up by the plant as a systemic insecticide. The same mobility issues occur, where the plant can’t take much of the ingredient up (so no actual insecticidal benefit) and most is left in the soil to lay waste to the rhizophere. I’ve only been into bonsai for a couple of years but I can imagine how much misinformation is strewn throughout the community based on what I’ve seen in my short tenure pursuing bonsai. I’m thankful someone with your appreciation for scientifically valid horticulture has as much reach and influence as you do. Keep up the good fight!