Thursday, January 30, 2014

Duranta erecta "Sheena's Gold" - another fun exotic.

This ornamental shrub growing up to 2 meters is a native from Florida to Brazil and in the West Indies, Golden dewdrop or Pigeon berry or Sky flower is a spreading, sometimes weeping, evergreen shrub or small tree.

The tree is not frost hardy and must be overwintered where temperatures falls below freezing.

When actively growing it needs a lot of water and can be fed regularly.

Sharp axillary thorns are usually present on stems of mature plants, but are usually absent on young plants.

Features drooping axillary and terminal racemes of light blue to violet flowers which bloom summer to fall. Flowers give way in fall to drooping clusters of yellow-orange drupes (golden dewberries as it were).

The tree is an ideal beginners bonsai because it adapts well to most bonsai practices. The only drawback of the tree is that the deadwood is soft and rots away quickly. It must be treated.

This species in common in the garden nursery trade and nice trees can be find.

The species lend itself well to smaller bonsai

How do you treat a nursery tree?
 (November 2013)

 Cut it back very hard!
(November 2013)
To play safe I left some green, but it is not necessary if the tree is healthy and growing strongly. My plan for the tree is a small, not higher than 20cm broomstyle bonsai. All the wounds are sealed to prevent water from reaching the deadwood. The cambium will roll over, but it will take a while!

The tree today (30 January 2014):

How fast growth do you want!

The tree will be left to grow out a little more before cutting back and being wired. Will update then.

A few other Duranta projects I am working on - most of them are still in progress.

This one is my oldest project:
 November 2013:
Duranta 2, 2011:
 November 2013
Duranta 3- 4, all November 2013: