Siberian Elm (Ulmus pumila) Hedge. You’re Damned if You Do, Damned if You Don’t

This hedge belonged to a buddies neighbour in an old Toronto neighbourhood. It had been growing there somewhere between 50-70 years, and was sheared back pretty much every year.

Looks great, right? Unfortunately, it is the infamous Siberian Elm. They have a bad reputation for bonsai. The idea is that, being a pioneer species, they tend to die back once they reach bonsai maturity and you try to slow their growth down. We knew this going into the project, so common sense should have said “don’t waste the effort, step away from the hedge”. I received this warning from a more experienced bonsai friend who had suffered Siberian Elm Heartbreak in the past.

Well, being the fools that we are, we dug them up anyway. All of them.

Now I have plenty of great Siberian Elm trunks that grow incredibly fast and are lots of fun to work on. But I am trying to not get too attached. In the mean time, I have a few ideas that I am going to test to try and stabilize them for bonsai cultivation. But I am not getting my hopes up.

2 Responses

  1. Pingback: Spring Work on a Siberian Elm & Bonsai Aesthetics Aluminum Wire « Lakeshore Bonsai: Bonsai in Toronto, Canada

  2. Rui Marques

    OH MY GOOD !!! Such a good material. Please send me some 🙂

    April 28, 2012 at 5:31 pm

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *