Author Topic: A zelkova project  (Read 11454 times)

John Kirby

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Re: A zelkova project
« Reply #45 on: April 05, 2012, 11:11 AM »
Interesting, why can't you repot and style in the same year? This is true for really, really old trees (some of them), and I am talking about old trees in pots, not necessarily old trees. This statement is an artifact of old American Bonsai.

Chrisi, what would you say if I told you that we style Ponderosa Pines and then dramatically repot them at the same time? Or that we repot and style Japanese Black Pines in the same year, sometimes at the same time?  The tree at the top of this page (The Itoigawa Juniper Tree of the Month and last Months JBP as well (with a 60+% reduction in foliage)) were repotted and styled at the same time. If your trees are healthy, have strong root systems and are growing well, many can and are worked both on top and below the surface in the same year. You have to be aware of your trees status, use good technique and appropriate timing and provide appropriate aftercare. Since we frequently repot Shohin every year, not being able to do both would lead to no work being done.

About this tree, I didn't say that it would be allowed to grow unchecked all year, what I said was don't pinch and let it grow, etc. there are major structural issues at the top of the tree that won't be fixable with Bands or clamps or rope. However, let's fix one thing at a time. To control the top, you will want to prune the top branches back to 2-4 leaves after it starts turning woody (lignifying). Should start happening in mid to late May. If you keep effectively pinching the tree now, while you are pushing for roots, you will slow down your progress.

Thinking about the top, you will eventually need to use big pruners, a saw and some chisels. Just be patient.

 

Chrisl

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Re: A zelkova project
« Reply #46 on: April 05, 2012, 11:36 AM »
Humm....I had thought that we don't want to have more than one stressor done to the tree in the same season.  I didn't realize it only pertained to old trees in pots, or tree's that aren't in perfect health. 

But yes, it does surprise me to be honest.  Repotting and styling in the same year.  Amazing both of those last two Trees of the Month had been repotted and styled in the same year!  They look immaculate.  Which is your obviously your point, that both work styling and root work can be done if it's healthy, done at the right time, and aftercare.  And funny, I hadn't even thought of shohin, as I don't have any, but you're right.  If you have to repot a shohin every year, one has to work both the top and the roots, one has to be a very good horticulturalist to be good at shohin bonsai.

Thanks for the information John.  Strange, every 'rule' I know seems to often wrong, or are 'rules' that often are not black and white.  I hope as I learn more, get more experience, I'll feel more comfortable about not being so absolute about rules in my work. 
 

Adair M

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Re: A zelkova project
« Reply #47 on: May 30, 2012, 10:20 PM »
An update on the Zelkova:

I've been letting it grow.  The branches are now a couple of feet long.  I just dropped it off at ye olde bonsai shoppe as I will be traveling for a week or so.

I did put a hose clamp around the trunk at the chop location to see if it will constrain the bulging there while the top grows.

And, my main concern at this point is to develop the "plate" nebari.  That appears to coming along.

I'll attach a photo of the clamp, because I know if I don't, Matsu will deny it ever happened...
 

Adair M

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Re: A zelkova project
« Reply #48 on: May 30, 2012, 10:27 PM »


Thinking about the top, you will eventually need to use big pruners, a saw and some chisels. Just be patient.



Pruners and saws I have.  Chisels?

What do you have in mind, John?