Valley oak (Quercus lobata)

The valley oak is the largest North American oak. These trees provide important nesting habitat for many bird species. As the name implies, valley oaks once covered rich valley bottoms in California. Much of this historic habitat is now covered in cities, although the trees are still common in undeveloped areas.

March 14, 2020:
The tree during rapid spring growth last month.
December 29, 2018:
The tree the day it was purchased from Walter Andersen’s nursery in San Diego.
December 29, 2018:
Beginning its life as a developing bonsai.
December 29, 2018:
Initial wiring.
February 3, 2019:
First repotting.
February 3, 2019:
Bottom third of rootball removed.
February 3, 2019:
Soil removed from roots with chopstick.
February 3, 2019:
Longer roots pruned and tree placed in new pot.
February 3, 2019:
The repotted tree. The branches are long and the plan is to gradually shorten them as the tree matures.
April 11, 2019:
Branches allowed to grow freely during recovery.
May 22, 2019:
Spring growth.
May 22, 2019:
Branches pruned.
May 22, 2019:
Possible front for the tree.
May 23, 2019:
Second wiring.
May 23, 2019:
Another possible front.
June 30, 2019:
Leaf-tips browning. I have come to the conclusion that I need to water my oaks more during San Diego summers, and possibly reduce sun exposure.
August 11, 2019:
Second flush of new growth in August.
February 1, 2020:
Branches shortened during winter.
March 7, 2020:
Spring growth.
April 26, 2020:
The tree today.

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