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Canadian Hemlock

Updated: Jan 6, 2022

Tsuga canadensis

Canadian Hemlock trees mature cinnamon-coloured bark’s tannin has been used for tanning hides, it grows to about 30 meters, 80 feet, is pyramidal in shape has fragrant flat needle leaves.

Bonsai Care

The Canadian Hemlock Bonsai has something interesting happening all year round. It is effective as a Formal Upright bonsai style and most Upright styles. Its fragrance is a unique factor of the Candian Hemlock.

Position: The Canadian Hemlock loves full sun but can tolerate a dappled shade position. It is a hardy species, but if the temperature falls below -10°C, it is better protected in a cool greenhouse.

Watering: The Canadania Hemlock Bonsai prefer moist but well-draining bonsai soil. Water thoroughly in the early morning to allow the bonsai to use the water during the daytime and ensure that the growing medium has no standing water over the night.

Feeding: Fertilise every two weeks from spring to autumn, using a balanced organic liquid fertiliser. During the hottest of summer months, discontinue feeding. Instead, supplement with a liquid seaweed + iron tonic a few times a year.

Repotting: While it is not too fussy about the soil type, it needs to be free draining. Younger bonsai may be repotted every year, and older bonsai repot when soil shows signs of depleting or bonsai growth has slowed. After repotting, place out of direct sunlight until the soil surface dries out. Use equal parts of a well-draining soil mix of loam, well-mulched bark, and sharp sand. Alternatively, use 1 part Akadema and 1 part Pumice.

Pruning: The Hemlock is a very slow-growing species prune when the bonsai crown is overly full, and light does not pass through easily. Prune shoot between late spring and early summer. Current years growth is pruned back to leave three active auxiliary buds or three lateral shoots. In autumn, cut away the most vigorously growing stems to only two each terminal branch.

Wiring: Best to Wire between late autumn and winter. Remove wire when growth gets vigorous again in summer.

Propagation: Sow seeds in autumn in a well-draining mix. Leave undisturbed till spring, has a high success rate you thin out by selecting healthy vigorous growers. Propagation from semi-hardwood cuttings can be taken end of spring, early summer. It has a fair success rate if a rooting powder is used.

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