All tree orders for this winter 2019 had been received by Tuesday 20th August, six weeks ago today. While these were being sent out, I deliberately kept a few over in the exact same conditions as those that were being shipped, ie packed in wood shavings in a polystyrene box. Once I knew every last tree had been received, I waited a few more days again to plant these held-over ones out for myself. I like to do this to show skin in the game, as well as to demonstrate how strong and hardy these delicate-looking little trees really are.
Back on Tuesday 13th August I had prepared a homemade experimental potting mix for these trees. Saturday 24th August was Day 1 of planting, and the following photos showcase one of these trees — a young Shanxi-Li — coming out of dormancy.
Please note that we are in Wollongong with mild winters — people further south and/or in colder climates would likely experience a more delayed development than what is shown here for this time of year.
Viewing Suggestion: Click on any of the photos to view in a pop-up window. You can then scroll through them manually via the left and right arrows that display at bottom left of that window, or click ’start slideshow’ at bottom right for this to happen automatically.
Shanxi-Li, Day 1, 24th August, 2019
Shanxi-Li, Day 4, 27th August, 2019
Shanxi-Li, Day 7, 30th August, 2019
Shanxi-Li, Day 10, 2nd September, 2019
Shanxi-Li, Day 12, 4th September, 2019
Shanxi-Li, Day 14, 6th September, 2019
Shanxi-Li, Day 18, 10th September, 2019
Shanxi-Li, Day 20, 12th September, 2019
Shanxi-Li, Day 22, 14th September, 2019
Shanxi-Li, Day 24, 16th September, 2019
Shanxi-Li, Day 27, 19th September, 2019
You can see the (30 cm diameter) pot in this photo, and may be wondering why the tree has been planted right up to the rim? This is because the roots sprawl any which way and length, as in the first photo on this page, and will dictate the tree’s position in a smaller pot. I could have chosen a larger pot, but this size makes handling easier for this photoshoot.
Shanxi-Li, Day 32, 24th September, 2019
Note the root stock just visible at bottom right of the trunk? See how quickly it grows over the next few pictures! You really need to keep on top of this — just pinch them off with your fingers when they’re at this stage.
Shanxi-Li, Day 35, 27th September, 2019
Shanxi-Li, Day 36, 28th September, 2019
Shanxi-Li, Day 37, 29th September, 2019
Shanxi-Li, Day 38, 30th September, 2019
Now you’ve seen how quickly rootstock can grow, I removed it after this photo!
Shanxi-Li, Day 39, 1st October, 2019
Not obvious in these photos are the side buds developing and ready to leaf, but these will be the subject of a future photo journal, or two!
One final photo to wrap up! The photo below is the same one as for Day 39 above, but with lengths displayed. It’s hidden by the leaves, but the length of that thicker green stem branching off and up to the top left is 75 mm — already catching up to the 125 mm length of the grafted branch it is growing out of!
Update: Here’s a better viewpoint that shows the length of the new branches more clearly: