Houzz Logo Print

Organic (Urban) Conifering Intro 1

10 years ago

Introduction to the Organic (Urban) Conifering

Meanwhile editing the Conifer Treasury 3.0 in 2009, I found more and more datas about finding new conifer selections in american cemeteries. A really strange idea, why are breeders disturbing the peace there? After a while I separated some cemetery finds with photos. Breeders found there brooms and compact growing conifers.

That time I lived in a conifer photo fog of 12000 collected pieces. I told myself, this is a good opportunity to recognize any different conifers, and tried the teoretic skills in the practice. The Christmas day in 2009 was very good in Pecs, Hungary, where they have a 150 acre cemetery, full of aged conifers. Most of them were planted by family members, mainly of seed. Very few nursery matter was recognizeble there. In this sense the cemetery area works like a wild forest.

In two hours I found more than 30 coloured sports, compact or giant habit trees, giant dwarfs and any mixtures of these. After a while it was clear, the finds are much more as with the usual practice available selections. The old plants were shown not usual habit, they are impossible to select in seedbeds or by any usual selecting methods. In many cases after 20-40 years take forms their sightly real outlook.

I think this was a turning point in the new concept: I have to examine aged plants, and select among them by habit, colour, form, which are important in the recognizing. I was speaking about my finding with Hodi Toth, Jozsef, Father of the Semidesert Conifering. Finally we started to discover the eastern suburbs of Budapest, Hungary. We found week to week incredible quantities of never seen aged plants.

I also informed Nate Cassell and Dax Herbst about the new situation. Nate made an experimental discovery in Colorado to give me a control about my ideas. He found some incredible old beauties in cemeteries and in the neighbouring forests with his �new eye". Having seen his shots, it was clear for me, that the Organic Conifering is born, and works.

In 2011 I tried to describe the substance of the Organic Conifering.

I asked about my friend Dax, who informed me.

�Good start on the text and photos of Urban Conifering 1.

Randy (Dykstra) and Chub (Harper) - (also Dave Horst / Charlie Hunter) all were friends and as natural broom & conifer hunting started in Cemeteries. While visiting Randy Dykstra in Iowa this summer, late summer he told me that Chub and he went to every cemetery on a map for years and years until they visited them all. Of course this was Iowa and Illinois mainly.

How they did the mapping was as this. They called the city (mayor office) and asked for city maps which included all the cemeteries within a city. Then they would go to the city and visit the cemetery. So yes they planned."

Some weeks ago Dennis Hermsen informed me, that he also found a nice Colorado fir broom in a cemetery.

I guess that the grounds of the Organic Conifering has been started about the 80�s in american cemeteries in a planned way, I followed them in 2009 with the test of the cemetery of Pecs, Hungary, and finally we turned to the examinations and selections of aged plants. We have a very characteristic series of aged Picea pungens seedlings, which start to turn down after 15-25 years, and later form a columnar habit � meanwhile pendulous.

I invite you all to an introduction journey to the Organic Conifering.

Feel free to join with unusual finds!

Part 1

Early USA & European Cemetery finds

Abies concolor Kinky

1996 Rich Eyre in an Iowa cemetery, near Shelby, IA

A medium green dwarf cushion or bun shaped.

Abies concolor Kinky Dax Herbst photo in Richs Foxwillow Pines of Rich Eyrie

Abies concolor Rockford

1993 Dennis Hermsen in the Rockford cemetery IL USA

Minature low mounding bun shaped WB with short blue-green needles. ACS database text.

Abies concolor Rockford Geolocation photo

Abies concolor Sidekick

1996 Susan Eyre in the Shelby cemetery as a WB, IL USA, Jerry Morris Collection

The original witches' broom was very large when discovered in a 100 year old tree. The orginial broom was about 8' off the ground and 8'H X 6'W. When grafted it becomes a small minature plant of interest and grows less than 1" per year. ACS database text.

A blue form of a compact witches� broom. Grows 1 inch a year. Stanley text.

Abies concolor Sidekick Daniel Vols USA photo

Juniperus sabina Barabits Gold

1973 Barabits E. HUN

Yellow-variegated type of /Tamariscifolia/.

Found by Elemer Barabits in the garden aruond the Mausoleum Prince Festetics,

cemetery of Keszthely, W-HUN.

Picea abies Calvary Upright

1978 Randy Dykstra in the Calvary Cemetery IL USA

Picea abies Calvary Upright photo

Picea abies Reynolds No. 1.

1989 R. Dykstra & C. Harper in the Reynolds Cemetery USA

Picea abies Skyhigh WB (2005 Dax Herbst in ACS database)

1990 Ken Brooks in Riverside Cemetery, Moline IL USA

Picea abies Sky High WB Dax Herbst photo

Picea abies Spring Grove No. 46

1990 R. Dykstra in Spring Grove Cemetery, OH USA

Picea abies Spring Grove No. 46 photo Burdan Nursery, Lubska POL

Picea pungens Sanctuary

2010 Nate Cassell CO USA

Wild found in the Denver cemetery as an old seedling.

Picea pungens Sanctuary Nate Cassell CO USA photo

Pinus nigra Birte

Gunther Eschrich GER as an old tree in a cemetery

Pinus nigra Birte Mesterhazy & Etzelstorfer photo

Pinus strobus Chippiannock

1980 R. Dykstra & C. Harper in Chippiannock cemetery IL USA

This witches broom has average blue-green needles and grows as a broad globular plant. It is a prolific seed setter and produces abundant viable cones. Many unique seedlings have been produced from this broom. ACS text.

Pinus strobus Chippiannock Dax Herbst in Harper Collection USA

Bickelhaupt Arboretum, Clinton IA USA

Pinus sylvestris Riverside Gem Kr�ssmann 1972

B. Harkness in Riverside Cemetery, Rochester NY

Pinus sylvestris Riverside Gem Bob Fincham photo

Pinus sylvestris Wroclaw (POL)

Found as a very old witches broom in the Wroclaw cemetery,

which has a globose form. A dense globe in graftings, specially

nice on high grafts. Mesterh�zy text.

Pinus sylvestris Wroclaw Sylwester Tomszak Nurs., Bielsko-Biala POL

Taxodium distichum Cave Hill

Found in Cave Hill Cemetery TE USA

A nice dwarf selection from Cave Hill Cemetery, the plant is supposed to resemble a peony, somehow this image eludes me. Arrowhead text.

Taxodium distichum Cave Hill Mesterhazy & Etzelstorfer photo

Thuja occidentalis Calvary No. 2

1990 R. Dykstra USA as a WB

Found as a witches' broom in the Mt. Calvary Cemetery, Dubuque, IA USA by Randy Dykstra, Fulton, IL. Originally call (Mt. Calvary No. 2) but the name was changed to (Calvary No. 2) when planted in the Heartland Collection of Dwarf and Rare Conifers, Bickelhaupt Arboretum, Clinton, IA. Dwarf upright globe with light green foliage. ACS text.

Thuja occidentalis Calvary Dax Herbst in Harper Collection USA

Thuja occidentalis Prairie

1986 R. Dykstra USA as a WB

Found as witches broom in the St. Joseph Prairie Cemetery, near Dubuque, IA by Randy Dykstra, Fulton, IL. Round dense conical form at age with light green foliage. Corrected ACS text by Mesterhazy & Herbst.

Thuja occidentalis Prairie WB Dax Herbst photo in Bickelhaupt Arb IA USA

Thuja plicata Excelsa

1926 Timm in a Berlin cemetery GER

Thuja plicata Excelsa Dax Herbst photo in Bickelhaupt Arb IA USA

Tsuga canadensis Jeddeloh

1950 J. D. zu Jeddeloh in a forest cemetery GER

Tsuga canadensis Jeddeloh photo


Comments (3)

  • clement_2006
    10 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    The plant fotographied at Etzelstorfer nursey named Pinus nigra "Birte" are very doubtfull.
    The true "Birte" are a small globose plant.

  • severnside
    10 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    Great idea. Our cemeteries in the UK are good for huge yews and the odd cedar or sequoia but certainly not the variety shown here.

  • tsugajunkie z5 SE WI ♱
    10 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    Yes, it is a great idea. Bickelhaupt has the best specimen of 'Calvary Upright' I've seen.