the cypresses were introduced in Ecuador in the year 1940. These cupressus must be about 50-60 years old. The previous year, long branches were pruned and some roots were layered. This year, in this resting season we again pruned branches thoroughly, reducing the foliage to the necessary. Next year it will be collected from the field. This cypress has a very thick trunk with an excellent conicity and a very interesting bark.!



That trunk base is to die for! :heart_eyes:


Thank you. We are collecting cypresses. The first season we prepare the roots, we use a mixture of moss, pumice stone, earth and hormones.

As Ricardo said, “to die for!”

Do I see Pichincha in the background in your second picture!

The background of the landscape is the Podocarpus National Park.

Yes, after looking again I realized that isn’t the lesser peak south of the main massif of Pichincha!

I grew up in Ecuador, mainly in Quito and Santo Domingo de los Colorados. Since getting into bonsai, I’ve often thought it would be great to grow ponderosa pine bonsai in the inter-Andean valley! (I’d be writing in Spanish, but most readers wouldn’t follow it.)


I’m sorry my English is not good. We have a great diversity of climates, from torpical coasts to snowy and high mountain climates. We are collecting pinus radiata to use as rootstocks to graft other pine trees. We are also focused on local coniferous species such as podocarpus, prumnopitys and nageias. I will upload to the blog images of these coniferous species of Ecuador.

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Don’t worry about your English! You’ve got enough of an “accent” to add some piquancy to your writing, but there’s no problem at all understanding what you’re saying. :smile:

When last in Ecuador, I encountered a broadleaf species I don’t remember seeing before: Polylepis. The leaves are naturally small, the bark is very interesting, and the specimens I saw had excellent natural trunk movement. I would have loved to bring back some seeds! Question is whether it would grow successfully in warmer climates and at lower elevations. (This was around Papallacta, in Imababura province.)

Polylepis is a species with a lot of potential. I work hand in hand with an Ecuadorian researcher. Ecuador has an area similar to the state of Arizona, but in its territory there are 3,500 different tree species.



Polylepis is the tree that grows higher at sea level. I do not know if this species adapts to warmer climates. I know in Ecuador areas with specimens of more than a thousand years, with extreme twisted shapes due to climate action, but it is difficult to access. It is a very interesting species and I have been experimenting with it for about two years. Now I know how it responds to pruning, growth cycles,soil ph, etc. I have around 500 plants of an age of two years and something else. they measure between 60 and 1.20cm. With these I will work some forests. The yamadori of this species is very delicate.



Wooooow. That’s a lot!!! This is a really exciting thread, because I feel like there are so much species of plants in certain parts that are completely untapped for bonsai. I’ve wondered a lot about about the sheer potential of bonsai species in South America especially. I mean, there must be species native to Patagonia that i’ve Never heard of but would thrive in my upstate NY climate. Very fascinating!

Mike, what Ryan does is inspiring. We must look for our local species and work a more native bonsai. Polylepis is a deciduous tree, but the hardness of the climate makes it grow with forms very similar to a conifer. Especially in the south, there are many conifers, I like the araucarias, a prehistoric tree. The only Araucaria bonsai I know is the one in the photo. There are also in the southern Austrocedrus mountains like those in the photos.



There’s some great potential in this thread! I think you’re doing the right thing by discovering the reactions of smaller material before going collecting.
Good luck, and enjoy the great landscape you’ve got, and some of the material you can find…meanwhile i’ll make do with a little shrub from someones garden :smile:


I wish you and your research partner the best in your endeavors. These pictures are beautiful. Fantastic trees. Thanks for sharing, Keep it up!