How to make a wire weeping willow tree


Weeping Willow Bonsai Tree Care Guide (Salix repens)

Introduction

One of the most popular bonsai trees is the Weeping Willow. This tree is well-known for its drooping branches, leaves, and flowers. It is the favorite of most bonsai growers because aside from its lovely appearance, it looks dramatic in any kind of bonsai style.

The tree is also fast-growing so you will be able to see results in just a few years’ time. The Weeping Willow has originated somewhere in China and thrives in Asia and areas in Europe. It is also found throughout the United States.

Bonsai growers also love the Weeping Willow because of its changing appearance. The catkins start in lovely silver color and then turns cream as the tree matures.

But despite its lovely appearance, the Weeping Willow has a short lifespan compared to other bonsai trees. Even when properly cared for, a Weeping Willow tree can last approximately twenty-five years.

But don’t let this spoil your hopes of growing a Weeping Willow bonsai tree. This tutorial will help you learn how to care for your Weeping Willow bonsai.

This will provide you with helpful information on how to feed, water, prune, wire, re-pot and basic care for your bonsai tree. With these techniques, you will have a strong and healthy Weeping Willow bonsai tree in no time.

Scientific/Botanical NameSalix repens
DescriptionThis deciduous tree is indigenous to Asia and parts of Europe. The branches arch and hang loosely but gracefully. Young leaves have a silken texture on each side, but they tend to lose the silkiness on the upper side as they age. Catkins adorn the tree in mid-spring, and flowers appear before the leaves emerge.
PositionThe tree prefers full outdoor sun, but will tolerate part-sun conditions. Weeping willows are quite hardy, and are grown successfully in USDA planting zones 4 to 8.
WateringWeeping Willow trees like moist, well-drained soil. It should not be left dry for extended periods of time. Over-watering is to be avoided, and standing water can prove fatal to the plant.
FeedingThe Weeping Willow bonsai tree requires a balanced fertilizer, which should be applied at regular intervals during the growing phase.
Leaf and Branch PruningRegular pruning and pinching-off is highly encouraged because plant growth is exceedingly vigorous. The tree easily achieves twelve inches of growth in one month.
Re-potting & Growing MediumYoung plants may require re-potting twice in one year because of its rapid rate of growth. Older plants can be re-potted less often. Soil of good drainage and rich, organic matter will ensure successful growth.
WiringWires are typically used to encourage and maintain the downward fall of the branches.
NotesA propensity toward brittleness means that the Weeping Willow tree is relatively short-lived, generally achieving a maximum age of only 25 years. Plants need to be monitored for pests and diseases that include caterpillars, borers, scale, cankers, leaf spots and blights.

General Care For Weeping Willow Bonsai

Pruning

Because the Weeping Willow bonsai tree tends to grow extremely fast, it will need to be pruned quite often. In fact, because this type of bonsai tree grows a lot quicker than other bonsai trees, especially in its youth, it will need to be re-potted a minimum of twice annually to ensure the roots do not break out. It is important to pinch off any new growth as well as prune branches so the beautiful downward look is properly maintained.

Because of how quickly this type of bonsai tree grows and how often it has to be maintained, there are some individuals who have a difficult time maintaining the bonsai. It has to be regularly pruned to keep the style.

While some bonsai trees only grow two inches annually, the Weeping Willow bonsai can grow a foot in just a single month. Men and women who own this type of bonsai tree also sometimes express difficulties in maintaining the downward shape of the branches. Some of them employ the use of wire to ensure it maintains the right shape.

Water

When maintaining the Weeping Willow bonsai, it will need quite a bit of water in order to ensure the soil remains moist. The bonsai tree should not go longer than two weeks without any water. However, a major mistake some people make is allowing the roots of the bonsai to sit in water, as this can kill it.

Fertilizer

Fertilizing the Weeping Willow bonsai is also extremely important. The fertilizer needs to have potash, phosphoric acid, and nitrogen in the mix. As well, the Weeping Willow bonsai tree needs a lot of sunshine, but it should not be placed in a location where it gets maximum amounts of direct sunlight exposure as it can actually burn the leaves of the bonsai.

Outside Display

Unlike certain other types of bonsai trees which can be kept inside the home, a Weeping Willow bonsai tree should be kept on the outside of the home. With a bit of planning, it is very easy to display the bonsai tree on the outside of a home.

There are bonsai plinths and stands that can really help with the aesthetic design of the bonsai tree. By placing some bamboo or potting a large maple adjacent to the tree, the Weeping Willow bonsai tree can be easily integrated into the garden to make it look more “Japanese.”

Some other elements that may be included in the design include small ponds and other water-related features, stepping stones, granite lanterns, or a small Zen garden that includes raked gravel and large rocks. Individuals can also add a small place to sit and relax by the Weeping Willow bonsai tree!

For those who are new at the art of bonsai trees, the Weeping Willow is often not recommended as a primary choice for a beginner. This type of bonsai tree is better for those who have better experience with maintenance and tools.

This is in large part due to its quick and unusual growth patterns. However, for those who love this art, the Weeping Willow bonsai tree can be a worthy challenge and definitely a good choice.

What will you need to follow this tutorial
  • A Weeping Willow tree
    • Weeping Willow tree bonsai growers use a young tree. You can purchase Weeping Willow trees directly from online retailers and from garden sites. You can find trees from a local nursery too. AWeeping Willow tree is just one way to grow bonsai. Make sure to purchase from reputable and reliable retailers only.
  • Weeping Willow seeds
    • You can also grow Weeping Willow trees from seeds. This will give you ample time to refine your tree starting from its growing phase. And compared to other trees, this tree grows fast so it won’t be long when you have a young tree to care for.
  • Bonsai Pot
    • You will find traditional Japanese pots available from garden stores or you may purchase pots from local nurseries. But if you wish to follow true Japanese tradition then you must plant your Weeping Willow bonsai in jade pots. But other than pot, you may also use other containers to grow bonsai. You can use regular pots or recycled planters as long as these have adequate drainage.
  • Balanced fertilizer
    • Weeping Willow trees need a balanced fertilizer. You can purchase fertilizer from local garden shops or you may purchase online. You may also use homemade fertilizer or compost but make sure that it has complete ingredients to help your trees thrive well all year-round.
  • A pair of sharp scissors
    • Pruning must be done to keep Weeping Willow trees in shape. Since this tree grows fast, expect regular pruning done at least twice a year to remove unruly growths and unnecessary branches that can affect the shape and style of your tree.
  • Pliers
    • Weeping Willow plants need to be wired to conform to the shape and style of bonsai you want to create. Working with wires for bonsai training is easy when you have a reliable pair of pliers. You need a pair of pliers to attach wires to the tree and to remove it as well.
  • Wire for wiring
    • Wires help control Weeping Willow tree branches and will let help achieve a variety of styles. Wires come in many types and the two most commonly used wires for Weeping Willow growers: anodized aluminum and annealed copper wires.
    • Anodized aluminum wires are used on young bonsais that still has soft trunks. Annealed copper wires are for bonsais that are more mature and have thicker and stronger trunks.
  • Clean water
    • You must have clean water for your Weeping Willow bonsai trees. Weeping Willow plants and trees must have a lot of water, especially during warm weather. You can use rainwater or tap water for your plants and no matter what type of water you choose, it’s best to check the quality of your water supply before using on your plants.
    • Water should have a balanced pH, not acidic or basic, to allow plant roots to absorb minerals found in soil, provided by fertilizer and nutrients.
  • Aggregates
    • Using aggregates with potting soil will improve soil drainage and aeration. Excess fertilizer and water must be drained from the soil to prevent root rot, molds and nutrient toxicity. There are a number of aggregates you can use but the most common areAkadama, sand with coarse grains, decomposed granite, pumic, turface or diatomite.
  • Bonsai growing soil
    • The best soil for Weeping Willow bonsai trees, as well as most bonsai trees,  is a sandy clay soil. This type of soil can hold water and nutrients and will also drain the excess away from the roots. Sandy clay soil also improves aeration and will help move oxygen to the roots to further boost tree health.

Step by step instructions

1) Understand fast facts about Weeping Willow bonsai trees

Indeed the Weeping Willow is one of the most popular bonsai trees because of its dramatic drooping appearance. But there is more than meets the eye when it comes to growing the Weeping Willow into a bonsai.

One important thing that any grower should understand about this tree is that it grows very fast. It can grow so fast that it can increase in height at about 12 inches per month. This growth spurt affects almost all the aspects of caring for a Weeping Willow.

Fast growing trees tend to outgrow their planters or pots two or more times a year. Therefore you need to re-pot at least two times a year and prune the roots regularly as well. There are a lot more techniques to master to be able to grow your own Weeping Willow bonsai tree expertly.

Description

The Weeping Willow tree is a deciduous tree and has originated from Asia and parts of Europe. This tree has branches that arch and hang loosely and gracefully. The leaves of this tree have a silken texture on each side.

Read More: Bonsai Tree Species Care Guide (A - C)

But this silky appearance won’t last long; as the tree matures, the leaves lose this silky surface. You can tell that the tree is already old when its leaves already have a dull appearance. Catkins can be found during mid-spring and flowers appear before the leaves emerge in spring.

Growing Position
  • The Weeping Willow bonsai tree prefers full sun although it can also tolerate part-sun.
  • The Weeping Willow tree is a hardy tree and will grow in almost all growing environments
  • But to ensure Weeping Willows grow healthy and strong, it should be grown in USDA planting zones 4 to 8.
Watering
  • The Weeping Willow bonsai tree will grow in moist, well-drained soil.
  • This bonsai tree should not be left dry especially for extended periods of time.
  • Do not overwater this bonsai because standing water can lead to mold growth and root rot.
  • Water your Weeping Willow bonsai trees when the soil is dry and never when it is moist or wet.
Feeding
  • The Weeping Willow bonsai needs a balanced fertilizer for optimum growth.
  • Fertilizer should be given to Weeping Willow bonsai on a regular interval.
  • Fertilize regularly during the growing phase to improve plant strength and resilience to diseases.
Leaf and Branch Pruning
  • Weeping Willow bonsai trees need regular pruning and pinching.
  • Pinching trees is more recommended compared to pruning because this plant grows rigorously.
  • Pruning should be done regularly to control overgrowth because this can grow 12 inches in a month.
Re-potting & Growing Medium
  • Young Weeping Willow bonsai trees need re-potting twice a year due to rapid growth.
  • Older Weeping Willow bonsai trees may be re-potted once or less often in a year instead.
  • Use soil with good drainage to let excess water and fertilizer drain out.
  • Use soil with organic matter to help improve growth and overall health of your plants.
Wiring a Weeping Willow bonsai
  • Wiring a Weeping Willow tree will help you achieve the style you wish to follow
  • Wiring is done to permanently maintain the downward drooping of your trees.
  • Wiring will also help maintain Weeping Willow in other styles like cascading, leaning and more.
Important Notes

A Weeping Willow tree’s body is brittle and this makes it short lived. A regular Weeping Willow tree will only be able to grow for about 25 years despite good nutrition and care.

Therefore, aside from giving your Weeping Willows the ideal balanced fertilizer, you must also watch out for pests such as caterpillars, scales, cankers, borers, and blights. You must also check for plant diseases which can affect or hinder the growth and development of this type of plant.

2) Distinguishing Weeping Willow Bonsai Trees from other bonsais

The Weeping Willow bonsai tree is a standout in every garden because of its fantastic shape and dramatic flowers. Undoubtedly, the most popular feature that will distinguish the Weeping Willow from other bonsai trees is that it has catkins that can start out as silver in color but soon will transform to cream color.

The leaves have a silky appearance on both sides. As the tree becomes older, its leaves lose its silk appearance. This is lost its leaves during the time. The branches of this tree bend forward to achieve that dramatic look.

3) Purchasing a Weeping Willow Tree

Weeping Willow trees are available in most bonsai nurseries. Rely only on reputable growers or retailers. You will find a number of bonsai tree dealers online where you can purchase a healthy Weeping Willow tree. If you are looking for low-priced bonsais a large garden center has the tree and accessories you need. If you are looking for top quality bonsai trees you will find what you need from specialized shops or dedicated sites that sell only bonsai plants. Local bonsai shows and expositions may sell Weeping Willow bonsais because this is a very popular tree species.

4) Growing Weeping Willow Trees from Seeds and Cuttings

Aside from buying an actual Weeping Willow bonsai tree, you can also grow your own tree using seeds. If you have a tree in your backyard or neighborhood then you can use this to get seeds to plant. You may also purchase seeds from local seeds shop or from an online site. Many bonsai growers opt to grow bonsai trees from seeds because they get to have a chance to shape and style their trees at an earlier time.

Growing trees from seeds facts:

There are no special Weeping Willow bonsai tree seeds. Weeping Willow bonsai trees are from regular seeds. Only after good care and refining will you be able to turn your Weeping Willow tree into a healthy bonsai.

There are a lot of advantages when growing Weeping Willow bonsai trees from seeds that you have around. You save a lot of money because seeds usually cost a lot. You don’t have to spend time and effort to look for seeds as well.

Using seeds coming from trees that you have in your hard is a huge advantage. You already understand its special needs, the tree’s mature size and appearance and important information about how to grow and cultivate it in its own natural environment.

Growing Weeping Willow bonsai from seeds

Germinating your seeds is the first thing you need to do. Weeping Willow trees grow well in moist soil, especially during its growing stage. Therefore you need to give your seeds good moist ground to germinate.

Germinating seeds is very important in growing a healthy bonsai tree. It will help you find out if your seeds are fertile or sterile which saves you a lot of time in cultivating seedling. So to start, you will first identify which seeds will likely germinate and which ones will not use a very simple test.

Place your seeds in a glass or transparent container filled with water. You may use tap water or rainwater; it does not matter for as long as this is clean water.

Seeds that will float are sterile or non-viable and will not germinate. Seeds that sink are fertile and these sink because of their viable contents. So germinate seeds that have sunk and discard the ones that float.

Now that you know which seeds are fertile, you may now germinate these seeds and eventually grow them to become Weeping Willow trees.

Read More: Bonsai Tree Species Care Guide (D - J)
  • A large pot is best to germinate seeds. Use a large but shallow pot because this will be able to hold up to 4 seeds.
  • Fill this large pot with peat seed sowing mix. This is available in most garden shops.
  • Place the Weeping Willow seeds on the surface of the mix. Do not place a cover on top of the container because germinating seeds need sunlight.
  • Water the soil to moisten it completely. Water should run off the sides of the container to show that the soil has been completely soaked.
  • Place the seeds outdoors in full sunlight.
  • Keep the soil moist at all times. Check your germinating seeds frequently and always keep the soil soaked. These seeds will germinate for about a few weeks.
  • You may transplantWeeping Willow seedlings to individual pots when these have gained strength. Remember that this tree grows fast and it won’t be long when these seedlings become young trees so you must transplant as soon as these are ready.
  • A small and shallow bonsai pot would be a good starter pot. The ideal planter pot has at least two holes alongside or at the bottom of the pot.
  • Place a layer of coarse substrate or aggregate. This will be your bottom layer. This will remove excess water and fertilizer from the plant roots. This will improve aeration of the soil to allow oxygen to be absorbed in the plant roots.
  • After the layer of aggregates, and bonsai potting soil. Bonsai soil is available in any garden center or bonsai accessories store whether online or offline. Remember to choose soil that will hold more water because Weeping Willow trees need soaked soils.
  • Place the seedling on the soil. Add another layer of bonsai soil to hold the seedling. Compact the soil with your fingers by pressing
  • Water your young plants; keep the soil moist. Water your plants at least once a day and never let the soil dry out.

Growing Weeping Willow from cuttings

Cuttings are parts of a tree that can grow and become another tree. You can take cuttings or clones from a Weeping Willow tree and grow another Weeping Willow. This is a very convenient way to grow more trees without the long wait of germinating and growing seedlings.

However, you still need to wait for the cuttings to develop complex roots before it could be planted. Here is step by step information on how to get cuttings from Weeping Willow trees and how to cultivate them.

  • Choose a healthy Weeping Willow tree as a donor. This tree should be in perfect health. It must be growing new leaves and stems regularly, it must be free from molds and any pest infestation and there must be no leaf discoloration or any health issues.
  • Take cuttings from the healthy Weeping Willow tree. This should be a healthy stem that has no issues.
  • Use a sharp knife or cutter to harvest the cutting from the tree. You must cut the cutting from the tree using a diagonal cut.
  • Place the cutting in water to avoid air pockets from entering the stems.
  • Let the cuttings stay in water till these develop roots. When the roots have thickened, the cuttings are now ready to be placed in soil.
  • Water the cuttings daily. Keep the soil moist and this should be watered regularly when the days are warm.

5) Caring for a Weeping Willow Bonsai

Weeping Willow bonsai trees will thrive happily in moist soils but it should never be too wet because it can lead to mold growth. Never let water stand in the soil. Aside from molds, you must be careful in checking for pests like caterpillars, scales, blights and more. This plant will grow exponentially and therefore it needs to be re-potted to avoid root lock.

6) Soil and repotting a Weeping Willow Bonsai

Weeping Willow bonsai trees need soil that can take as much water as it can. It needs soil that can excellently drain water and fertilizer as well. This is very important to prevent nutrient toxicity which can affect the absorption of nutrients as well.

The ideal soil to choose is a sandy loam soil. This type of soil will absorb water and nutrients well plus will drain excess water and fertilizer. This also has excellent aeration properties which allow oxygen to pass through the soil to benefit the roots.

Sandy loam soil is available from local gardening shops. You may also use your own garden soil provided this has sandy loamy soil qualities. You can also add more aggregates to improve drainage of water considering that Weeping Willow trees need moist soil.

The type of pot for repotting Weeping Willows

The best pot for Weeping Willow bonsai is a wide and deep pot that can hold more water. Take note that these pots should have good drainage because without adequate holes your tree would be prone to nutrient lock, root rot and molds. Larger and deeper pots need more drainage holes. There must be drainage holes along the sides and the bottom part of the pot.

Things to consider when choosing a bonsai pot

Weeping Willows need wide, deep pots which can hold a lot of water. But still, consider the drainage of your bonsai pots. Prepare adequate drainage for your Weeping Willow bonsai tree because, without adequate holes in your pot, your plant will end up getting root rot or mold.

Keep in mind that for large and deep pots about four or more drainage holes should be present. These drainage holes could be found along the sides or underneath the pot.

Drainage holes will improve water drainage and a lot more. Drainage holes will avoid nutrient lock in the soil. The nutrient lock is the accumulation of nutrients in the soil that in this makes the soil toxic to plants.

Watering a Weeping Willow Bonsai

Weeping Willow bonsai trees require moist, well-drained soils. It needs a lot of water to be able to grow rapidly. You must not leave this tree unwatered for a long time or for extended periods of time.

You must not leave standing water on roots as well because this can lead to mold growth and root rot. Water your bonsai trees when the soil is dry and never when the soil is wet.

7) Pruning and shaping a Weeping Willow Bonsai

Weeping Willow bonsai trees should be pruned regularly. However, this tree may benefit from pinching and not from pruning. Pinching encourages branching of the plant because you are removing the main stem.

This way, the plant will branch out into two stems from the leaf nodes below the pinch or cut. Pinching must be done regularly especially on young Weeping Willow bonsai trees. The rapid growth of Weeping Willow bonsai trees will require regular pruning.

Wiring bonsai trees

Read More: Bonsai Tree Species Care Guide (L - W)

A Weeping Willow bonsai tree may be designed according to a variety of bonsai tree styles. This has to be done as early as possible or while the trunk of the tree is still soft and young. Wiring mature Willows can lead to injury because of its very delicate trunk. Wiring is also harder for mature trees because wood is stiff and moving this can lead to fractures within the tree trunk.

Wiring can achieve a number of styles. The Weeping Willow may be wired, pruned and styled to achieve a cascading style, a flowing style or a broom style. Keep in mind though that wires must be applied carefully on Weeping Willow bonsai trunks. This should be removed the same season it was attached as well because this tree grows more rapidly.

Important wiring techniques

Wiring is a way to shape and style a Weeping Willow bonsai tree. You will be able to style bonsai trees safely, effectively and quickly when you use wires. Wiring lets you reposition its branches to the shape or style you want to achieve. There are a number of styles that you can use to shape this treeWeeping Willow tree.

Shakan Bonsai Style

One of the most popular bonsai tree styles that would be ideal for Weeping Willow trees is the Shakan bonsai growing style. This is the popular slanted bonsai tree style and looks like a miniature slanted tree. The trunk is made to protrude from the soil in a slanted manner. The rest of the tree straightens out in an outward position. The trunk is in a 60-80 degree angle which completes the slanted style.

This style is achieved by strong wiring to control the growth of the main trunk. Wiring may be used to control the height of the branch as well. Using strong lighting from one direction will also help bend the tree to create that slanted and windswept look.

Dramatic Fukinagashi

The Dramatic Fukinagashi is like a windswept head of hair during a storm. This is a good style to follow for a Weeping Willow bonsai tree and although it may look exotic, it can be more common especially for this type of tree. In the Fukinagashi style, the branches and the trunk will grow to one side for that realistic effect of strong winds blowing from one direction. Wiring should be done carefully for Weeping Willows because it has delicate branches and trunks.

Shari Bonsai Style

The Shari Bonsai Style is all about shaving the bark of the tree to keep new growth from appearing. This is also known as the stair effect because branches may be long or short and achieved through wiring and pruning. The leaves at the top of the tree create aesthetic balance. The Shari bonsai style is according to the natural development of trees and plants. You will also find a bald or barkless area on the trunk in a Shari bonsai style and this is usually due to the effects of harsh weather conditions.

Seki-joju or Rocky Terrain

The Seki-joju or Rocky Terrain style is all about growing bonsai roots around or through an obstacle. The obstacle may be anything in nature like a jagged or smooth rock. This happens naturally when the roots of the tree grow underneath and at the sides of nearby rocks. Roots will also naturally crawl around the rock surface and all these happen as the trunk of the bonsai forms. The tree will grow in a straight manner despite various obstacles in its path. The Seki joju or Rocky Terrain bonsai style is mostly done in trees with good roots.

Literati Bonsai

The Literati style is a bonsai style with a skinny trunk and curved leaves. Many growers and bonsai enthusiasts agree that this style depicts the struggle in nature for even the smallest form of life to survive. You will find a few bald spots along the trunk to recreate dead branches. The Literati bonsai style is found in nature in trees that grow in densely populated areas.

Han-kengai

The Han-kengai bonsai style has a cascading effect. A section of the trunk grows straight while a branch grows outward and slightly downward. A small area of the trunk may be seen before the section where the thick branches are located. These branches are in different directions and develop low-lying leaves. A bonsai with a Han-kengai design needs a deeper pot to preserve the style.

Start wiring a Weeping Willow bonsai tree as soon as it is strong and wiring can be done any time of the year. Apply wire carefully, do this during the growing season or as the branches grow thicker. When you wire later or when the tree is mature, it can cut through the bark which can lead to ugly marks and scars. Don’t forget to remove the wire when it scheduled to do so. When the branches are wired, check your bonsai tree constantly for any problems.

The type of wire to use

Weeping Willow bonsai trees use only two kinds of wires. You can use are anodized aluminum and annealed copper. These are used to train bonsai plants but there are differences between these wires.

Aluminum is for deciduous trees that have harder and stronger trunks while copper wires are for species with harder trunks like conifers and pines. If you are new to wiring bonsai then you must initially use anodized aluminum wires because these are easier to handle. This is also readily available anywhere.  Wires also come in a variety of thicknesses and the most commonly used is the 1 mm to 4 mm wires.

Raffia is used to prevent injury in branches and trunks that are wired. Raffia is palm fiber available from garden stores. This is soaked in water before it is wrapped along the tips of the branch or bark. Raffia will protect these from damage as a result of bending and moving.

Step by step instructions on how to wire a bonsai
  • Choose the type of wire appropriate for the type of tree that you are styling.
  • Choose the thickness of the wire you will use.
  • Measure the length of wire that you need.
  • Take one end of the wire and wrap this around the branch that needs to be trained. Do this at a 45-degree
  • Wrap the wire neatly in line along the branch.
  • When you are done wiring, cut the excess using pliers.
  • Gently bend the branches into position. Do this slowly to avoid damaging the plant or tree.
  • To bring down high branches, you may use a guy wire. Wrap a protective material or raffia around the branch and place a hook at the end. Secure the hook with a slender piece of wire and anchor it on a strong root. This will bring down the branch that is too high.
  • Check wired Weeping Willow trees regularly because the tree grows very rapidly.
  • Remove the wires during the same season.
  • After wiring, take note of the growth of your Weeping Willow bonsai. Place it in a shaded area of your garden and give it water daily. You must feed it balanced fertilizer that this tree requires.
Post-wiring care for your Weeping Willow

After wiring your Weeping Willow bonsai tree remember the following tips. Place this in a shaded area of your garden so it can regain its strength and health. Never leave it in direct sun.

Give your bonsai nutrients from balanced fertilizer so it can recover from wiring and pinching. Remove the wires on schedule to avoid damage to the bark. Remove the wires by cutting the wires at every turn. Never reuse the wire for wiring other branches. Remove wires at every turn to make it easier to turn. Monitor plant health and let this rest before pinching it again.

8) How to prevent pests & diseases

Weeping Willow bonsai trees need to be watered daily and love moist soils making this very susceptible to mold growth and root rot. To prevent this, never water the soil unless it is dry, but not too dry.

You must also use the right soil which is sandy clay soil and use the ideal planting pot to grow Weeping Willow bonsai trees.

When it comes to pests, there are a few that plague Weeping Willow trees. This is susceptible to caterpillars, blights, and mites and therefore you must be very cautious. Inspect your bonsai trees daily. Check even the underside of leaves because this is where most pests bite into because it’s softer and more succulent.

Use water in a spray bottle to get rid of pests. Simply spray away pests before these eat your hard work away.

You may also use pesticides provided that these are safe to your plants. Check out pesticides from a local bonsai dealer or garden store and make sure to follow instructions on the label.

There are also some diseases that Weeping Willows are susceptible to. Monitoring your bonsai plants daily and making sure that these are in good shape will reduce the chances of getting any disease that can ruin your Weeping Willow bonsai tree.

Conclusion

A Weeping Willow bonsai tree is lovely, graceful and easy to grow. It can grow exponentially and will be able to bear lovely flowers faster compared to other trees. But despite its beauty and quick and easy growth, it won’t last as long as other trees. Even with proper growing techniques, a Weeping Willow bonsai tree will grow only up to 25 years.

A Weeping Willow bonsai tree needs to be in great shape all year long. It requires regular pruning or pinching and wiring. This also needs frequent watering and balanced nutrients to grow well. This tree can be styled to a variety of bonsai tree styles because of its dramatic flowers and branches.

A Weeping Willow bonsai tree can grow fast but it is susceptible to a variety of conditions. Because of its love of water, it can develop root lock and molds. It has delicate branches and trunks so care is needed when pinching or wiring. It is susceptible to pests so you must be very critical about the health of your plants and inspect these daily.

This bonsai tree loves the sun but should be placed in a shaded part of your garden so it can grow comfortably. You must also re-pot it at least twice a year because of its rapid growth. When given the right care and attention, your Weeping Willow bonsai trees will reward you with lovely blooms all year round.

Read More: Types of Bonsai Trees

Care guide for the Weeping willow Bonsai tree (Salix)

There are several hundred willow species but the most interesting for bonsai is the Weeping willow (Salix babylonica / alba 'Tristis' / Salix x sepulcralis ‘Chrysocoma').

SELECTING TREE SPECIES

Willow Bonsai Care guidelines

Placement

Willows prefer a sunny place during the growing season, but might need semi-shade during the hottest weeks. The weeping willow species need winter protection when they are planted in containers. A cold but frost-free greenhouse, garage or shed is a good winter place for a willow bonsai tree.

Watering

On hot summer days the willow needs huge amounts of water and must be watered several times a day. Never let the soil dry out. You can even place the pot in a shallow bowl filled with water during hot days, in order to avoid drought damage. Water less in winter but keep the rootball slightly moist. Continue reading about watering Bonsai trees.

Watering

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Fertilizing

Apply solid organic fertilizer every six weeks or use a liquid fertilizer every two weeks during the growing season. Don't feed with high nitrogen which would cause large leaves, long internodes and increased susceptibility to insects.

Pruning and wiring

In winter cut off excess shoots which have emerged from the trunk or in other unwanted positions. Shorten the remaining branches leaving only one or two buds in order to replace the long hanging twigs with new growth in the following year. In summer trim back the new shoots repeatedly. Wire new shoots beginning in June to bend them down in a hanging position. Take care to remove the wire in time so that it won't bite into the bark. Older branches can be pulled down with guy wires in spring. Continue reading about pruning Bonsai trees.

Repotting

Willows have strongly growing roots which fill the bonsai pot very quickly. Therefore it can be necessary to repot willow bonsai every year when the buds begin to swell. You can prune the roots strongly to make room for new root growth. The soil should retain enough water but at the same time offer good drainage. As the willow prefers a slightly alkaline environment, you can add a little pumice or lime stone gravel to your soil mix. Continue reading about repotting Bonsai trees.

Propagation

Willows are easily propagated from cuttings. They will even root in a glass of water. Even quite large and thick plant parts can produce roots.

Pests and diseases

Willow borer, aphids, scale, caterpillars, gall makers, gall mites, rust or canker can bother the willow bonsai. Use a specific pesticide and in severe cases ask a professional gardener for advice. For more detailed information on these techniques, check out our Bonsai tree care section.

Weeping willow bonsai tree

Leaves of the Weeping willow

Salix babylonica or Salix alba bonsai

Weeping willow bonsai

General information about the Weeping willow Bonsai tree

It has drooping branches and long yellowish twigs which hang down almost to the ground. It is native to China and is widespread in the northern hemisphere. The real Weeping willow is Salix babylonica but there are some varieties of other willow species which are very similar, like Salix alba 'Tristis' and Salix x sepulcralis 'Chrysocoma'.

The trees can grow 20 m (65ft) tall and become 80 to 200 years old when they grow under favorable circumstances. Willows like moist soil and often grow close to ponds, lakes and rivers. In spring, the silvery or yellow catkins give the weeping willow a very attractive appearance. The leaves are long and narrow. In autumn they turn golden yellow before they fall off.

Weeping willows can be beautiful bonsai but their care and styling is not particularly easy. They need a lot of water and their strong growth must be controlled. It is best to make larger willow bonsai because the hanging branches and leaves need enough room. The shoots need to be wired downwards all the time because they tend to grow upwards to reach the willow's genetically predetermined height. Willows sometimes lose branches which die for no apparent cause. If you need help identifying your tree, take a look at our Bonsai tree identification guide.

Tree of beads "Weeping willow". Part 2

Beaded products are very popular today among lovers of needlework, because they look unique, inimitable in any interior. In this article you will see a step-by-step master class in the form of photos and a detailed description of it. If you were not previously familiar with the first part of the article, which describes a detailed technical description of a beaded tree, you can see it here.
Before you start creating the Weeping Willow, I recommend that you read this part of the article.

Recommendations before starting to create a beaded tree “Weeping Willow”

Small branches that will be located on top are created from light green beads. Then we mix the remains of light green beads together with green beads, and then the branches from below, and those that are the longest, are created only from green beads.

Step-by-Step Beaded Weeping Willow Tree Tutorial:

Step 1.

Before we dive into making the beaded tree, we need to do some preparatory work. To do this, we need to take wire cutters and thin wire, then we cut the wire into various segments - these are our future branches, which we will only form. Now we take the wire and beads in the amount of 7 pieces. We string the beads on the wire, lower them to the middle of the wire.

Step 2.

Next we need to twist the wire clockwise as shown in the photo.

Step 3.

We form similar leaves from beads, both on one side and on the other side. Again we turn to twisting a thin wire with beads clockwise.

Step 4.

We start twisting again, repeating this procedure a couple of times in a row.

Step 5.

Using twisting, we allow ourselves to create any number of leaves of our future "Weeping Willow" on a branch.

Step 6.

Now, in order not to repeat myself in the description, I will indicate how much needs to be done to create a complete bead tree composition.
So, in total you need to create:

  1. 14 branches in light green color, and each branch should have 17 leaves, and each leaf should consist of 7 pieces of beads;
  2. 24 branches in green, and each branch should have 17 leaves, each leaf should consist of 7 pieces of beads;
  3. 24 branches in green, and each branch should have 25 leaves, each leaf should consist of 7 pieces of beads;
  4. 17 branches in green, and each branch should have 33 leaves, and each leaf should consist of 7 pieces of beads.

In the end, you should get just such an amazing pile, consisting of blanks of branches for a tree made of beads.

Step 7.

Next, we take blanks of twigs in the following quantity: 4-5 pieces of long twigs, 5-6 medium twigs, 3-4 small twigs - we all fasten the twigs onto a rod of thick steel wire. After that, you need to wrap the formed branch with a floral tape, which should be pulled tight. In the end, there should be only five such branches.

Step 8.

Take wire cutters and use them to cut off some thick steel wire, then proceed to form a common tree trunk and its roots.

Step 9.

Since the real willow trunk is even and smooth, we can hide the resulting irregularities from the steel wire with the help of thin strips of fabric with which we wrap the trunk.

Step 10.

Now the trunk needs to be wrapped again with floral tape.

Step 11.

Into the floristic sponge, next we fix our wonderful willow.

Step 12.

We take the previously prepared pot, and set the willow there, lay decorative pebbles around the trunk. Now it remains only to use glue, which will firmly fix the entire beaded composition in a pot.

Step 13.

We straighten the branches of our "Weeping Willow" for credibility in the direction required for this and bend the branches to the sides in the desired direction. The whole composition is completely ready!

Author of photos and products: Nyusha

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What can be made from beads?: Flower fantasies | Training

Acquaintance with the magical world of beaded flower fantasies began quite simply: a friend asked me to find patterns of bracelets on the Internet. Indifferently looking through all kinds of necklaces and baubles, I accidentally saw photos of flowers made of beads. I could not tear myself away and downloaded more than a dozen pages.

Miniature sakuras and bonsai, violets and fuchsias, roses and orchids, cacti and lilies, hyacinths and chrysanthemums — in their works, talented craftswomen conveyed the beauty of both simple and exotic flowers and trees. Many compositions were very similar to live bouquets.

Interestingly, not only women and children, but also men are engaged in this needlework. As they say, art is not feminine or masculine, and beaded flowers are real art.

Materials for making flowers from beads

First of all, these are beads of different colors. It is much easier to convey the beauty of a flower if you use beads of several shades.

The size of the beads is small, medium and large. For roses and lilies, for example, you can use large beads, but for delicate violets, small ones are better. The shape distinguishes between round beads, faceted (cutting) and glass beads (long tubes).

A distinctive feature of making flowers from beads is that they are woven on wire, not on fishing line. This gives them shape and allows the petals to bend. Wire of the desired diameter can be bought in special stores for needlework. In the absence of such, craftswomen use wire from old transformers or strip insulation from ordinary wires sold at any hardware store.

The most commonly used wire is 0.3-0.4 mm in diameter. You can use wire and other sizes. If you want to make a weeping willow, it is better to use smaller wire for the branches, then they will sag down, which will give the tree a natural look.

You will also need wire cutters and tweezers.

Techniques and techniques of beading in the manufacture of flowers

This is a parallel, looped, needle weaving, stringing with arcs (or French technique). Despite the seeming complexity, mastering each technique is quite easy. Often, when creating a flower arrangement, a combination of techniques is used. For example, flowers are made in French technique, and leaves are woven with parallel weaving. Photo: Depositphotos

Today you can find many bead weaving forums where needlewomen share the secrets of making beaded flowers and lay out product patterns. Experienced masters of this type of decorative art weave "by eye", like artists copying a flower from nature.


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