Big cedar elm 14 months later

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#1
2015-09-21 10.54.00.jpg 2015-09-21 10.54.45.jpg I collected this thing in the heat of summer maybe 14 months ago. It didn't have a leaf left on it. Grew some little branches before winter and really went off this year.

Obviously too tall right? I'm thinking in spring I'll reduce the trunk by another third (all the branches above that point will make great cuttings) I don't think I'll do anymore work on it than that, just let it go crazy for another year and evaluate then.
 

rockm

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#3
texas.jpg Nice start. You have several ways to go with this design wise. If you're looking for long lanky, literati-ish trunk, select one of the leaders, cut the others, saw the chop until it's less noticeable and let the chosen leader go. It should only take two or three seasons to thicken the leader enough to work it into the design.

You could also cut lower, before the first bend from the ground and go for a broomish style.

Given the trunk has a bit of movement that can be accentuated, I 'd go for a longer lanky trunk.I've got a CE that's four feet tall with a trunk that's only a big larger in diameter than this one. Movement in a CE trunk is great. The majority I've seen are beanpole straight. Mine's not and has some pretty pronounced movement in it. Use what this tree gives you.

And FWIW, skip the cuttings. Not worth the time. There's bound to more than a few around. Dig another one this size, or just go out front and pull some out of the yard. The photo above is my parents side yard in East Texas--near Lake Palestine-ALL of that undergrowth is Cedar Elm. It literally ALL over the place.
 
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LanceMac10

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#4
Really great looking bark.:D
Good job nursing it along!:cool:
Thread grafts?:confused:
Interesting broom shape at the top....what, don't really want a 5 foot tall tree?:eek:
Good luck, and as always, keep us updated!;)
 
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#5
I agree with Rock, if you have access to elms this size, then cuttings are a waste of time. If your plan is to style it spring 2017, fertilize heavily and let it grow freely until then. I would re-pot and cut it down at that point. After you reduce the height and cut off all the useless branches, it should respond with new shoots all over. When two or more shoots emerge from the same spot, you should only keep one. Let that growth extend and harden off a bit, then wire your basic shape.
 

Giga

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#6
I don't know, the height might work for it-has great bark. Maybe a better pic with it's winter image.
 
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#7
bound to more than a few around. Dig another one this size, or just go out front and pull some out of the yard. The photo is my parents side yard in East Texas--near Lake Palestine-ALL of that undergrowth is Cedar Elm
It's one of the most common natives in my part of town. Along with hackberry, live oak, ash juniper along with some texas ash, and escarpment black cherry.... several others. but .... unlike east texas which generally has Sandy soil in this area we have shallow rocky clay , my point being it was a real chore to dig one this size. But I'm going to collect some more maybe trade a few to people who have access to different stuff. Seems to be a popular item.

The cuttings are no troubles and I'll need some smaller ones for the pot I bought from Stickroot
 

rockm

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FWIW, you don't "dig" a big CE, you saw it out of the ground. To collect one, I just measure a circle six inches out from the trunk, start probing with a shovel, until I find a big root, saw through it repeat. Sure you have to move some dirt, but it's not that much.

I have to scratch my head on the cuttings. A lot of trouble for material with little to no nebari. The smaller ones up to an inch or less can be PULLED out of the ground, even in your area after a good rain.
 
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#9
FWIW, you don't "dig" a big CE, you saw it out of the ground. To collect one, I just measure a circle six inches out from the trunk, start probing with a shovel, until I find a big root, saw through it repeat. Sure you have to move some dirt, but it's not that much.

I have to scratch my head on the cuttings. A lot of trouble for material with little to no nebari. The smaller ones up to an inch or less can be PULLED out of the ground, even in your area after a good rain.

Yep that was pretty much my method with this one small hand shovel (the kind you might camp with) and folding saw. Dig enough to expose a coarse root, then cut dig around and under then cut.... repeat.

As for cuttings it isn't any trouble for things like this I stick them in a deep nursery can with perlite, turface, floor dry what ever I have handy wet the media and cover the top with saran wrap set inside near a window check it in a month.
 

rockm

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#10
FWIW, for those unfamiliar with Cedar Elm, the rough bark is typical for this species. It develops rapidly, even on seedlings and is one of the best things about working with the tree.
 

M. Frary

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#12
FWIW, you don't "dig" a big CE, you saw it out of the ground. To collect one, I just measure a circle six inches out from the trunk, start probing with a shovel, until I find a big root, saw through it repeat. Sure you have to move some dirt, but it's not that much
This is exactly how I get American elm and Hawthorn out of the ground.
 
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#13
I collected this thing in the heat of summer maybe 14 months ago. It didn't have a leaf left on it. Grew some little branches before winter and really went off this year.

Obviously too tall right? I'm thinking in spring I'll reduce the trunk by another third (all the branches above that point will make great cuttings) I don't think I'll do anymore work on it than that, just let it go crazy for another year and evaluate then.
The trunk of this tree does not appear to have any taper, so you have a couple of options: broom-style, or drastic chop and regrow to produce a tapering trunk. If you go with broom-style, you'll need to chop the trunk to maybe 6-8" from the soil surface. If you want to build a tapering trunk, then chop at no more than twice the trunk diameter from the soil surface. It'll take several years to develop the tree this way; broom-style will be a lot quicker.

Good luck!

Zach
 

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