Author Topic: Collected cedar elm  (Read 2713 times)

jferrier

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Collected cedar elm
« on: April 15, 2011, 05:08 PM »
Dug this tree last spring, and have only replaced the heavy clay soil with a well draining agg. mix, started fertilizing, and pruning long new unwanted sprouts now that its more established. The first branch was accidentily broken off but has rebudded back. I realize it needs quite a bit of fattening up as its only about 1-1/2" thick and maybe 18" tall. And its got a long way to go with branch ramification and filling in, so I'm hoping it will thicken up as that progresses. But I'm looking for opinions on the general large branch structure and placement and trying to decide which side will be the front (leaning towards #2). I'm wondering if the 3rd large branch up is too thick? Also, I don't know how I feel about the curving trunk. Opinions appreciated. I'm open to a radical restructuring. Maybe windswept with all the twigs of the right bent down branch (pic 2) pulled to the left?
 

jferrier

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Re: Collected cedar elm
« Reply #1 on: April 15, 2011, 05:10 PM »
2nd pic didn't load correctly.
 

jferrier

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Re: Collected cedar elm
« Reply #2 on: April 19, 2011, 01:29 PM »
Anyone out there? Tell me to throw it in the fire, but please tell me something!
 

MatsuBonsai

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Re: Collected cedar elm
« Reply #3 on: April 19, 2011, 03:22 PM »
Looks like it has good movement and taper.  Where are you located?
 

rockm

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Re: Collected cedar elm
« Reply #4 on: April 19, 2011, 04:25 PM »
The trunk on this is OK. The existing branching is never going to work out, though, especially the "dropped" branch that goes up then comes back down.

I'd shorten all the branches (with the exception of the first, which has already been shortened) by at least half. I'd remove most of the upward/downward branch too.

The hard pruning will stimulate possibly explosive backbudding (you might want to wait another year before doing the heavy pruning to allow the tree to gather strength, though). You will have a lot more to work with once you get buds to pop on the trunk and shortened branches.

FWIW, I've had a large collected CE for over 15 years now.
 

GastroGnome

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Re: Collected cedar elm
« Reply #5 on: April 19, 2011, 09:51 PM »
In my experience, cedar elm trunks will not thicken well under pot culture, even in large boxes, if you are looking for any measurable thickening within 5 yrs, the ground is your best option.
 

rockm

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Re: Collected cedar elm
« Reply #6 on: April 20, 2011, 09:24 AM »
Agreed. If you want to fatten it up, it needs to be in the ground. Although, with some work, it would make a nice shohin-sized tree with the trunk it has now.
 

jferrier

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Re: Collected cedar elm
« Reply #7 on: April 22, 2011, 11:08 AM »
Rockm:
Thanks for the ideas. I had been pondering losing that up/down branch for a while. I've had this tree for 2 seasons since it was   collected. The first it stayed in its native clay soil and this season was repotted in a better mix.  Its growth has been steady and lots of new buds have been plucked that were too low, so  I'll probably go ahead and take it off. Getting ready to move so I haven't put it in the ground but may do so later.
« Last Edit: April 22, 2011, 11:10 AM by jferrier »
 

MatsuBonsai

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Re: Collected cedar elm
« Reply #8 on: April 22, 2011, 11:22 AM »
Are there any more branches on that side of the tree?  It's tough to tell from the photo.  Sometimes it's better to work with what you have while you work to develop the tree.
 

jferrier

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Re: Collected cedar elm
« Reply #9 on: April 22, 2011, 11:41 AM »
Matsu:
If you mean the side with the up/down, there presently isn't. But I've pulled so many new buds that getting one to pop out there wouldn't be a problem. These trees are just about the best backbudders I've worked with. I do like the height, trunk line, taper, and first branch placement. The 3rd branch would have to go if the up/down goes or it would be too thick, and that's probably why I've kept the up/down. I just wanted to see if there were any ideas other than removing those 2, but that may be the best solution.
« Last Edit: April 22, 2011, 11:55 AM by jferrier »