Best of all, it’s the bonsai species you only need to buy (or nab) once. More on that below.
This specimen has been grown from a tiny cutting in just two years’ time. This photo is from September 7th of this year.
This is where the Dwarf jade becomes a “perpetual motion” bonsai machine.
This is literally two and a half year’s work. The base is 3/4″ above the root crown, and that’s starting from a cutting 1/8″ thick (and going through two winters spending a lot of time indoors).
Here’s what I cut off the specimen above – one of many 1/8″ sprigs, with the lower leaves removed. This cutting gets stuck right into a pot of soil. (Note: most pros will tell you to leave the cuttings out for a day or two so the cut ends will dry; there’s nothing wrong with doing this, but I’ve never found it necessary.) In a few weeks’ worth of warm weather, it’ll root.
This is the magic of Spekboom. Once you’ve bought your own specimen or, alternatively, if you can nab a small cutting from a fellow grower when he’s pinching his, you’ve got the species forever. Every cutting roots, and they grow fast as long as you provide basic care.
There’s no real design to this one yet, but I pinched off enough extra “branches” to produce something of a structure for starters. The 4″ Chuck Iker round is lovely, and really suits the future tree. I will get thickening of the base in this pot, by the way. Right now it’s 3/8″.
This one also has a 3/8″ trunk base, and will remain a small bonsai as it develops.
And that’s the story of the bonsai species you only need to buy (or nab) once. Get yourself a Dwarf Jade (Spekboom), and have a lifetime of bonsai fun.