Miniature Gardening forum: Inspired by Mayan Ruins of Tikal, Belize

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Name: Joe Nersveen
San Francisco (Zone 9b)
May you have many Zen Gardening Mom
Mar 29, 2016 7:50 PM CST
I already had a miniature bonsai garden in mind when I originally took the photograph (below) of the Tikal Mayan Ruins in Belize. My miniature Mayan Ruins garden landscape isn't an attempt to make an exact copy the original scene, it's simply inspired by the beauty and culture displayed in the photograph I took some 20 years previously.

I actually used standard aquarium ruins decor for the pyramid and the large carved faces set in the stone mountain. To that I added a few carved stone Mayan souvenirs I acquired on my original trip, all those years ago.

The three main trees are kingsville boxwoods which I have trained as bonsai (but again my bonsai club refused to allow me to exhibit this penjang garden because "it has too much junk and not enough trees and it's in a non-traditional irregular tray pot not meant for penjang (bonsai gardens) and it defies traditional Japanese bonsai culture and rules".
Whatever their rules may be, I still am very proud of this little garden.

There used to be some really nice tiny firecracker fuchsia accent trees mixed in, but they do not like the same horticultural practices as the main 3 boxwood trees. Their scale work great with the kingsville boxwoods and it gave it more of that jungle feeling.

To make the arrangement, I cut plastic needlepoint grid to match the irregular shape of the tray pot and secured it in place with wire through the two drainage holes at the bottom. Then I passed two wires for each tree up and through the plastic grid wherever I want to place a tree - which coiled around the trunks to secure them in the arrangement. I also wired some of the tree branches to get better branch structure. I also passed up several long wires which I wrapped over the aquarium decor elements to secure them to the rock mountains. Finally I mossed everything over and placed the walkway stones in place and added the crane figurine. I left the wire on the trees for about 4 months by which time the the roots had grown in and secured the trees could.

It's very low maintenance needing trimming just 2x per year and weakly, weekly fertilizing schedule in spring and summer. The boxwoods are EXTREMELY SLOW GROWERS adding just ½ inch per year to their profile.

Size 14x10x8" Planted with pre-bonsai 5 year old nursery trees all planted together in 2010. Tray: Japanese brown irregular shaped ceramic tray pot.

I welcome questions comments and suggestions.

I'll post some more mini gardens I've made real soon.

May you have many Zen gardening moments.
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Joe Nersveen
San Francisco Bay Area Gardner & Bonsai Artist
Name: Becky
Sebastian, Florida (Zone 10a)
Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Daylilies Hummingbirder Butterflies Seed Starter Container Gardener
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Ideas: Master Level Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Birds Ponds
Mar 29, 2016 9:13 PM CST
Beautiful! Hurray!
What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters, compared to what lies within us.
Garden Rooms and Becky's Budget Garden
Name: Bev Walker
SW Virginia (Zone 6a)
Herbs Region: Virginia Miniature Gardening Garden Art Frogs and Toads
Apr 2, 2016 7:11 AM CST
Your Mayan Ruin is an outstanding planting! Thumbs up

I love my incredibly slow growing Japanese boxwood patio shrubs, and they seem so happy with my lack of attention.
It's all about recycling the WEEDS of our daily life!
Name: Jean
Prairieville, LA (Zone 9a)
Charter ATP Member Plant Identifier The WITWIT Badge Garden Sages Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Apr 2, 2016 7:23 AM CST
Welcome! to ATP Joe. That is a lovely miniature garden. It is a shame the club would not allow it to be displayed...their loss is our gain. Smiling
Name: Tiffany purpleinopp
Opp, AL 🌵🌷⚘🌹🌻 (Zone 8b)
Houseplants Organic Gardener Composter Region: Gulf Coast Miniature Gardening Native Plants and Wildflowers
Tropicals Butterflies Garden Sages Cactus and Succulents Plant Identifier Million Pollinator Garden Challenge
Apr 3, 2016 6:27 AM CST
Blown away! What an incredible creation! TY so much for sharing it & wishing many Zen moments to you too!
👀😁😂 - SMILE! -☺😎☻☮👌✌∞☯🐣🐦🐔🐝🍯🐾
The less I interfere, the more balance mother nature provides.
👒🎄👣🏡🍃🍂🌾🌿🍁❦❧ 🍃🍁🍂🌾🌻🌸🌼🌹🌽❀☀🌺
☕👓 The only way to succeed is to try.

Apr 30, 2016 2:16 PM CST
Wow!!! Hurray!
Name: Mone
Chicago *O'Hare/Lake* (Zone 6a)
Plumerias Bee Lover Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge)
Jun 8, 2016 7:13 PM CST
So cool.
BTW, I thought Tikal was in Guatemala.
Name: Rj
Just S of the twin cities of M (Zone 4b)
Garden Ideas: Level 1 Plant Identifier Million Pollinator Garden Challenge
Jul 26, 2016 4:05 PM CST
Great Job!
Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed.
Name: Rick Moses
Derwood, MD (Zone 7b)
Hostas Ferns Garden Photography Plant and/or Seed Trader Forum moderator Region: United States of America
Region: Mid-Atlantic Region: Maryland Million Pollinator Garden Challenge
Aug 26, 2016 2:05 PM CST
I like the idea of the plastic mesh in the bottom. I'm getting ready to start my first attempt at bonsai. I'm using either a Wisteria sisnensis or Wisteria Black Dragon (I originally thought about twining the two varieties together).

I'm thinking a non-traditional shape, where the trunk is 8-9 inches tall and then it sweeps out and around a 10 inch diameter hoop. The result, if it works, would be a ring of wisteria blooms dangling like a chandelier.

A couple of questions:
Am I crazy to try for this kind of design?

Will the flowers adapt to a shorter length, or do I need a taller standard?

Many thanks!

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