1st Euro Hornbeam

cooperbonsai

Seedling
Messages
14
Reaction score
3
1st Hornbeam. A bit too tall for my liking. Should i do the unthinkable and cut it all the way back? I feel like the 1st branch is too high. New(ish) to Bonsai so appreciate expert opinions!!
1A476A89-55E0-4790-86A3-4A6A607EB9D4.jpeg
 

Attachments

  • 21CD9F68-0B7C-44BB-8881-921732304419.jpeg
    21CD9F68-0B7C-44BB-8881-921732304419.jpeg
    342.1 KB · Views: 10

cooperbonsai

Seedling
Messages
14
Reaction score
3
I should mention it’s roughly 2’ tall and 9” to the 1st branch.
 

BobbyLane

Masterpiece
Messages
4,093
Reaction score
12,743
Location
London, England
whats the nebari like? trees are built from the bottom up. even if you chopped low, at this point the nebari appears to be non existent. its decent starter material. good to practice on. if your instincts feels its too tall i would agree. the proportions dont look right. so you could begin by uncovering the nebari, and chopping to the first branch to see what pops lower over summer.
some folks like to ground layer trees to get better roots, ive never done that, i always start with a good nebari. this type of tree would be ok in a forest of similar looking trees if kept tall. hedging material like this is easy to come by and you could add a few more and build a forest or practice on this single tree.
 

cooperbonsai

Seedling
Messages
14
Reaction score
3
To your point the nebari isnt great at all. A couple bigger shoots which come forward but almost non-existent nebari to the sides/back. This is my first hornbeam so would it be ‘too’ drastic to cut to literally 6-7”, plant deeper for better potential nebari and hope for a new leader? The almost 90 degree 1st branch concerns me. Thanks for your advice!!
 

BobbyLane

Masterpiece
Messages
4,093
Reaction score
12,743
Location
London, England
To your point the nebari isnt great at all. A couple bigger shoots which come forward but almost non-existent nebari to the sides/back. This is my first hornbeam so would it be ‘too’ drastic to cut to literally 6-7”, plant deeper for better potential nebari and hope for a new leader? The almost 90 degree 1st branch concerns me. Thanks for your advice!!
ok so we've established the tree has poor nebari. 'drastic' you want to talk about drastic you should see some of my hornbeam threads:D no nothing is ever too drastic for me. no risk without reward is my motto. just one example https://www.bonsainut.com/threads/carpinus-development.46895/
you just bought it, if you have the kahoonies to chop it low and hope for the best, go for it mate. it should back bud low or it might not, it will take at least 2 months or more after you chop low before anything happens if it happens. its a hornbeam so it should back bud on old wood.
i did suggest first going to the low branch but in your opinion its too horizontal. but i think you could get some heavy wire on it and guide it upwards, its definitely bendable. and the tree looks to be moving in its direction anyway. so if you bend it up, it becomes a leader until something pops lower. thats my advice to you as a newbie. but if was mine i would chop low and hope for the best.
 

BobbyLane

Masterpiece
Messages
4,093
Reaction score
12,743
Location
London, England
Thank you! Ive chopped and gone with the new leader.
cool, you will definitely get buds popping lower on the trunk. keeping that branch can work as a sap drawer and will keep the sap flowing up the trunk.
love the enthusiasm! a lot of folks ask for advice, get the advice and then you dont see anything for months, either lost interest or fearful of doing anything too drastic.
 

BobbyLane

Masterpiece
Messages
4,093
Reaction score
12,743
Location
London, England
btw the nebari doesnt always have to be perfect, hornbeam are notorious for putting out good radial roots though, so look for one with those characteristics in future. or even if this one just has a decent 'flare' then that can be a good start. flare as in an angle in the base that is fairly balanced from side to side and tapers out, its not essential to have roots come from front and back if you understand what i mean. but its a bonus. anyway these are good tough old trees to learn on.
 

VAFisher

Omono
Messages
1,750
Reaction score
6,512
Location
Maidens, VA
USDA Zone
7a
Personally, I think this one needed to grow and thicken - not be chopped.
 

BobbyLane

Masterpiece
Messages
4,093
Reaction score
12,743
Location
London, England
i think if one desired thickness, once you get some buds popping lower, you could then just stick it in the ground. that can still be done at any time in the season.
 

Similar threads

Top Bottom