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White deposits on pots

Q: I have noticed that on many of my brown (unglazed) pots and also on other colours, a white deposit cakes hard on the edges. Can you tell me how to avoid this, or if there is a substance with which to clean it?

A: The white deposit on your pots can be caused by either a chemical in the clay coming to the surface or by chemicals in our water or by fertilisers. It is possible to establish exactly what it is and possibly to provide another chemical to dissolve it, but in all probability the cleaner would kill your tree, so you have to resort to mechanical methods. On glazed pots a razor blade or scalpel can be used to scrape the deposit off, while on unglazed pots fine abrasive paper (glass or sandpaper) will easily remove the ugly marks..

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Haiku

Fearlessly he moulds and

guides the elm tree

to a greater masterpiece

Random Bonsai Tip

Straightening training wire - For those who don't know and for those who have forgotten - to straighten training wire that has been removed from a tree, grasp each end of the wire with a pair of pliers and jerk apart. Alternatively, grasping one end of the wire in a vice, and the other with pliers is much more effective as then it is possible to rub the shaft of a screwdriver up and down the wire getting rid of the small bumps.