Mega Swamp Cypress

Here is the latest addition to our bonsai family. The tree was only a couple of inches thick and about 4ft. tall when I put it in the ground approx. 6yrs ago. 3 days ago it was about 15ft tall. For some strange reason I thought it might be a good idea to dig this big guy out and do something with it. Current height 54ins, and the base is 21ins. Pot 38″x24″x7″…. A huge thanks to Chris White @ Red Dragon for getting me sorted for the pot, as the recycle tub I bought earlier was way too small. I did have a plan for the design before the dig, but now I see it potted up, I will be content to just look at it for the next year or two before any styling decisions will be made. Happy for you to throw out some though….be curious what you think. That’s a 15 litre bucket btw, for size comparison.
Quick encouraging update for this big baby of mine. Overall health of this tree seems to be on track with weekly seasol and fortnightly feeds of nitrosol or powerfeed. Budding has been generous considering the treatment its had. I’m also happy to report, all the super cuttings (2-6 ins. in diameter) are shooting as well. All will get this aftercare for some time, but for now I’m excited with the progress so far.
Oh…. the other Mega Swampy has been in a humidity tent since its dig. I have taken the tent off today and had a careful dig around the base and was pleased to discover some nice fine white feeder roots. It hasn’t thrown out any shoots as yet, but only time will tell if this monster will make it through the summer…..fingers crossed he takes after his happy relatives.


Another ‘then & now’ update pic from today. I have started to slowly lower the 2 primary branches and as you can see by the comparison shot, that they have already come down quite a bit. Slowly but surely with this process. I have pruned back the original upper branches heavily, and with the explosion of shoots, have gently wired them down to the correct future angle. The apex has also put out 2 strong shoots right smack bang where I need them, and I will let the new leader bolt skyward for maybe 6-8ft, to start developing some upper taper. Everything is being done with great care and caution…. nothing too radical, and so far it is responding well to the feeding program of Powerfeed/Seasol combo full strength applied every 2 weeks. I have done some careful exploration around the base and I’m finding beautiful new strong healthy red roots the thickness of a pencil, as well as a ton of fine white feeder roots, so very happy with it’s progress.
23-1-13_before trim

6 thoughts on “Mega Swamp Cypress

  1. I personally think the water is pretty good. It allows you to see clearly if the cutting has rooted or not. I’ve had these in soil and have sprouted shoots, only to find months later it was only stored energy in the cutting causing it to shoot. No roots were there and when disturbed the cutting quickly died. By the way…. I grow all my smaller Swamp Cypress in large foam boxes filled with water. The tree, pot n all is in well over the soil level, fully submerged permanently…. a few drops of seaweed tonic doesn’t hurt either. The base of the trunks fatten up much quicker I’ve found using this method. I have had 1 year old pencil thick cuttings fatten up to 1 inch in one season and still remain about 12-18 inches tall. Seems to get fatter more so than taller which works for me. 🙂

  2. Wow nice man! How did you go about digging it out? I have one training in the ground for over 4 years now and need some help on digging it out….is it too late or should I wait till next year? And roughly what roots are more important, tap roots or feeder? I see you have knocked yours of pretty shallow for the pot and looks epic!! Any feedback would be greatly appreciated. Thanks

    • Danos, I need to know where you are located before I can tell you when to do any digging. Deciduous trees are usually dug or repotted mid to late winter, at bud swell, but not already open. When I dig mine, it’s when they are dormant, so for me here in Australia, it’s around early July that works best for me. You want fine feeder roots….not tap roots which go straight down, otherwise you will never get it into a shallow container. Currently this tree is around 6ft or 183cms tall and the pot alone takes 2 men to lift… It’s not your usual specimen, but a trophy dig and survival more than anything to me…. It will probably end up in a bonsai nursery some day as a pretty nice display tree, ‘cos I’m not as young as I used to be, and moving it around is a challenge.

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