chinese elm from nursery

bunzI

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Hello world!

I recently purchased this chinese elm from a nursery that needs quite a bit of work, but I wanted a project. The branch structure, secondary and primary, is not that great and needs work w/ overlapping, upward growth etc. Short of scraping it :p, I was curious as to what you guys may have to say. Should I keep it in the pot and let it get a season of growing in, OR plop it in a larger grow pot and let the trunk thicken a little. Some of this is preference but jw. I was also thinking about hard pruning this guy and chopping most of the branches off. Would this be too hard on the tree if its starting to bud? I have it growing under a fluorescent light right now until it thaws a little more in MI and then its going outside. Also, I am thinking some kind of informal upright w/ this guy eventually. I do want to keep it on the smaller side. Just wondering what some of the people with a little more experience might have to say.

Regards,
N
 

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bonsai barry

Omono
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Thie frist thing I would do would be to remove the moss and check the drainage of the soil. If it were mine and I was looking for a project, i would:
1) Plant it in the ground
2) I would try air layering the top third
3) A trunk chop near the base.
 

Mike423

Shohin
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I agree with Barry. The in ground method is the best for getting a thicker trunk faster. It also gives the tree some vigor allowing for a more hands on training/pruning later on.
 

rockm

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I would check those roots. All that moss is not a good sign. Things look a bit on the soggy side. It looks to have been plunked in that pot with no root care and backfilled with coarse soil around the root mass. That's not a good thing.

You have a decent trunk. I'd skip air layering--not really much there that's worth the effort.

I would be a bit cautious about planting it out in the ground. Depending on the variety, it might not be able to withstand Michigan winters...Catlin and Seiju varieties of Chinese elms are not real happy with extremely low temperatures, like below 15F for sustained periods.
 

bunzI

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Yea I checked to see what I was working with under the hood. It seems like this was made from a ground layer, and the nebari is pretty bad. It basically forms an upside down T with a segment of old branch in the root, so I was planning on doing an air/ground layer and starting a new root system at some point. Like rockm stated though, I'm not sure if it can handle the winter here. Especially not right now. If I do anything, it wont be until around April as far as ground planting. But in the mean time, you think a big pot would work? And what about those branches?

Regards,
N
 

serpentsgarden

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a thought

some of the intially worst material can in the right eyes become great works. Also box built and moved into a cool unheated area say a garage or makeshift hoop house could give the relief you need. Maybe if you are careful you can begin to tourniquet the roots to force them higher up. And the elm i was taught is a clip and grow type of tree. So perhaps trunking him up for a few years and seeing what comes of it could be an option. a few maples i have were started form poor material and granted they took more time to get into shape but it was worth it and i have enjoyed the journey. Maybe this will help. When i see material that is unworkable i try to find a means to make it so. Mostly as a self challenge and i have failed many times but such is life It has taught me more in that failure than success has. Again just ideas and thoughts.
 

serpentsgarden

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what i see

I would try to perhpas reduce to the trunk line a bit rework branches into new postion and restyle into a more upright style. I would trunk this guy and when healthy and vigourous enough apply a layering above the roots with a skirt to help spred intial new roots repot and treat horticulturally for a few years. Refining branches at teh same time. I would also change the direction of planting as well. It looks healthy at leats which is great news and still good work to achieve. Maybe just sketching or thinking wild might inspire a new progression for you as i saw. It has potential to be more than it was before. I wish you luck nice tree
 

evmibo

Shohin
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Any news on this Elm? I'm interested to see the progress if any.
 

bunzI

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evmibo

I repotted this elm and hard pruned it in Feb. This is what it looks like right now. I am growing a couple whips right now, the top one will become the new trunk and I'm looking at making a branch from the other one. I'm also going to chop the trunk a little right above the new trunk to get rid of some of the knobs.

Cheers!
 

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