Kempinski’s Korner – March 2022

Saint Patrick’s Day means green….

I hope you wore green on Saint Patrick’s Day. Certainly the trees in my garden did.  Saint Patrick’s Day is a good milestone for the onset of tropical trees work. By March 17, the threat of frost has been significantly reduced and most of the deciduous trees have put on leaves. Even the tropical trees should be shedding last years leaves and showing new growth. Check out the fresh growth on this Buddhist Pine (Podocarpus marcophylla) and even the small Haggarbush (Clerodendrum sp.) below it.

My Headache trees (Premna obtiusifolia) are dropping the leaves that turned yellow over the winter and are flush with new growth.  Ficus too are pushing lots of new growth.  You can start to prune this new growth if you are trying to maintain shape.  If you want a branch to fill in, let the main branch lignify, that is turn brown, then trim it back. 

Buddhist Pine (Podocarpus marcophylla)
Buddhist Pine (Podocarpus marcophylla)

Other life is also waking up.  This past week while doing a pre-dawn check on my bonsai trees, I removed leaf fall and weeds. In the low light I saw what I thought was a dried-out branch of a red maple and I almost grabbed the head of this Yellow Rat Snake. The reptile had made a temporary home in one of my Buddhist Pine (Podocarpus marcophylla) bonsai.  

Yellow Rat Snake
Yellow Rat Snake

Rob Kempinski

Rob is an internationally recognized bonsai artist and author.  He enjoys teaching bonsai at all levels and introducing newcomers to the pleasing art of growing miniature trees in a container.  Rob has written many articles for bonsai magazines and journals.  He has published several books, many on the art of bonsai.

Rob's Texas Sage
Rob Kempinski showing his texas sage

Bonsai Society of Brevard

For more detailed information contact our Brevard based Bonsai club.

The Bonsai Society of Brevard is one of the many clubs within the Bonsai Societies of Florida.