Chinese elms

Si Nguyen

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Hi everybody, I trimmed a few Chinese elms today, and I thought I would show them here for your reading enjoyment. Elms grow very fast around here.
Here's the first one. It was started from a root cutting about 4 years ago. It went into this first bonsai pot in January2010. It is about 11 inches tall. It is basically an umbrella style tree, but with all the branches weeping down instead of up. Any critiques or comments would be greatly appreciated.
 

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Si Nguyen

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Here's some more views of this elm1 bonsai. The second shot is the view from inside the tree looking up.
 

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Si Nguyen

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Here's the second little elm I worked on today. This tree was started as an air-layer about 5-6 years ago. It was in a few bonsai pots before I repotted it this January 2010 into this little Japanese flower pot that I got from Ebay for $15. I had to drill some holes into it though. The tree is about 10 inches tall. It's a cork bark elm I think.
 

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Si Nguyen

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Here's the third elm I trimmed back today. I got this tree from a flower stand at a flea market in 2007 for $35! It was so cheap I thought! It went into its first bonsai pot in January 2010. The pot is a bit tall I know, but it's the smallest size that would fit with the long, long big roots. It had no small roots up close at all! I would have to reduce the root ball again in 2-3 years. It is about 18 inches tall.
 

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Si Nguyen

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Here are some older pics of elm3 from April 2008 before, April 08 after pruning, and June 08. I pruned it back very hard when I first got it in 2007 (I can't find the original pic of it in 2007). I think the term is "de-branching", where one removes all or most branches and start all over again. Just goes to show how fast these elms pop back with heavy pruning.
 

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RyanFrye

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I really like the second one. All three are good but that one is my favorite. Well done!
 

Brian Van Fleet

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Love the balancing act in the first tree! Well done...all good, but the first one is a unique composition.
 

bonhe

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Hi Si, can I consider you as a Chinese elm master in Southern California? :) Well done. Bonhe
 

Si Nguyen

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I really like the second one. All three are good but that one is my favorite. Well done!
Thanks Ryan, here's a pic of it from last year. This shows the branching structure a little better. I think I posted it on BonsaiTalk once.
 

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Si Nguyen

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Hi Si, can I consider you as a Chinese elm master in Southern California? :) Well done. Bonhe

NO, chinese elm is so easy, what is there to master?
It is my favorite tree to work with because it allows me to keep very busy cutting it. I walk around with a scissor and snip at them all day, all year long. It's the most fun.:)
Si
 

Si Nguyen

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This treee has some great movement in the trunk and branches that is lost in the foilage. Is there some way to show off the movement better?

Hi Barry, the pictures don't show off the branches too well, that's why I submitted the one view from below. In real life, one can see the branch movements very well. There is but a thin layer of foliage on the outside and a large open space underneath the canopy. Just imagine an umbrella. I can't capture it in picture. My photography lighting is bad somehow.
 

Si Nguyen

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Love the balancing act in the first tree! Well done...all good, but the first one is a unique composition.
Thanks Brian. I did not start out wanting an exposed root-style, but when I was repotting it a few years ago, I found that I needed to take advantage of the roots in order to give it some height, in order to have rooms for the weeping branches. Elm root cuttings are very fast for these exposed root style bonsai.
 

jk_lewis

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Of the three, tree number 1 is by a wide margine the most original and best. The other two, while very nice bonsai, are more "ordinary," and don't really have that zowie factor. Too bad the pot has such staining on it.

The pot in #2 is very interesting. Is it an old pot? Problem is, that it tends to pull the eye away from the tree.

Very nice work.
 

Si Nguyen

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Of the three, tree number 1 is by a wide margine the most original and best. The other two, while very nice bonsai, are more "ordinary," and don't really have that zowie factor. Too bad the pot has such staining on it.

The pot in #2 is very interesting. Is it an old pot? Problem is, that it tends to pull the eye away from the tree.

Very nice work.

Thanks JKL, I think so too. Here's a pic of elm1 from this morning in daylight to show the canopy from the top down view. The foliage canopy is actually very sparse, as one can see through to the ground.
I agree that colorful pots tend to detract from the tree, but I like to have a few small colorful pots in the garden, because they brighten up the bench a little. If one stands far back and look at the whole bonsai bench, then it is more interesting to have a dash of color here and there. One just have to "sacrifice" a poor tree or two. Sort of like the bridesmaids and their dresses in a wedding.;)
 

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pjkatich

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Si,

Good job on your elms.

I like what you did with the first elm very much. It's story comes across very clearly and I think it is a very pleasing composition.

The second tree has good balance. However, I would agree with jkl on the pot. It does distract from the tree.

The third elm reminds me of a Chinese penjing style tree. Was this your intent?

Thanks for sharing.

Regards,
Paul
 

grouper52

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Tree #1 is gorgeous - but even better than the tree, IMO, is the setting in the pot, and the entire visual presentation of your photo. Kudos!
 

DaveV

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Hello Si. I believe your gift is designing the composition. Take Elm #1 for example. What makes this a very pleasing tree to view is how you planted it. I have seen many exposed root chinese elms but your style is what sets it apart. It seems as a very traditional style - that what I like particularly.

DaveV.
 

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