Englemann spruce #3 progression

Hartinez

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The last of 3 englemanns collected last spring. Removed a bit of the original soil on this repot, again, with strong root growth from last year. Another repot will not take place for another 3 yrs. I’d like to get this root ball down to a smaller pot in a literati style. Tree has pushed its spring buds very nice. I will leave all of the foliage on and water and feed heavy this season. Currently in full sun but may switch to afternoon shade when it gets really hot here. Tree has a very cool surface root that should be a fun point of interest long term.
 

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Hartinez

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Great response on this tree so far. This springs growth is incredibly robust as you can see in the needle size difference from this years and last years. I’ve been fertilizing heavy with slow release and fish fertilizer and recently switched to MaxSea fertilizer. Lots of setting buds for next spring as well. I won’t cut anything back till next spring and will begin styling. Here’s a quick sketch of my idea. The tree is tall at around 40” but should make a very cool literati. The primary branch will be brought down and used to mimic the trunk line and will be broken up into 3 separate pads at 3 separate levels. Maybe 2.

It’s coolest and my favorite feature is the surface root. I love the way it curves from the trunk to the root seamlessly.

There is one section towards the bottom that must have had a branch at one point, lost its branch then bulged over the years from healing. If angled right the bulge is not noticeable.
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New growth and buds along the branches.
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Tree as is
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Design idea
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Main branch intersection.
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Bulge at the base
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the bulge from a different angle and that great surface root.
 

MACH5

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Hey Danny, I think I would treat it more like a bunjin. Meaning that I would approach it in a more minimal way using smaller pads and less foliage/branches. I like your drawing, but it looks to be more thought of as a classic informal upright.
 

Hartinez

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Hey Danny, I think I would treat it more like a bunjin. Meaning that I would approach it in a more minimal way using smaller pads and less foliage/branches. I like your drawing, but it looks to be more thought of as a classic informal upright.
Thanks for the response Sergio. Yeah at the trees height, with its thin trunk and flowing lines it really wants to be a bunjin. I certainly wanted the drawing to be more reminiscent of that style. Honestly, your drawings inspire me and I’ve been trying to make sure I put pen to paper first to better understand my direction and the tree. When I get to the point of styling next year, I really want to make sure I don’t remove to much, and I think just having that hesitancy in my mentality is reflected in my drawing. When I do get to cutting back branches to new buds next spring however, I think I’ll be able to see the final shape even better. Especially in the top third of the tree where several branches need to be either removed and jinned or thinned significantly. Thanks so much for taking the time to give me input expert advice. Hopefully you’ll see this thread again next spring when I get busy and can give bits of advice along the way.
 

MACH5

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Thanks for the response Sergio. Yeah at the trees height, with its thin trunk and flowing lines it really wants to be a bunjin. I certainly wanted the drawing to be more reminiscent of that style. Honestly, your drawings inspire me and I’ve been trying to make sure I put pen to paper first to better understand my direction and the tree. When I get to the point of styling next year, I really want to make sure I don’t remove to much, and I think just having that hesitancy in my mentality is reflected in my drawing. When I do get to cutting back branches to new buds next spring however, I think I’ll be able to see the final shape even better. Especially in the top third of the tree where several branches need to be either removed and jinned or thinned significantly. Thanks so much for taking the time to give me input expert advice. Hopefully you’ll see this thread again next spring when I get busy and can give bits of advice along the way.

Sure sounds good! Also remember that Engelmann needs to be approached carefully in stages. Not too much work done all at once. They can take wiring but they'll be screaming and kicking all the way through!
 

Hartinez

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Sure sounds good! Also remember that Engelmann needs to be approached carefully in stages. Not too much work done all at once. They can take wiring but they'll be screaming and kicking all the way through!
I tell you one thing I’ve been pleasantly surprised with. I collected all 3 englemann at 10000 ft in Northern NM (where these trees are everywhere) and the highs rarely get above 90 mid summer. I’ve had them in full Abq sun where temps have been consistently 95/96, and these trees have not missed a bit. They all look extremely healthy. I was thinking I’d need to give them more relief from the Abq sun.
 

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