Hollow trunk Laurel Oak

aml1014

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Hey everyone,
Today I wanted to finally start a new thread for my Laurel Oak. I bought this tree earlier this spring and it's progression since then can be seen here http://www.bonsainut.com/threads/a-couple-new-trees-from-wigerts.23040/ .
Basically I got the tree from wigerts and progressively reduced branches and styled the tree over the year.
Today I finally took care of the giant chop left from when the tree was collected and I felt the tree deserved a new thread.
So here's the tree after today carving and guy wires to begin moving the 2 leaders that are left.20161119_163118.jpg Here's a few close ups of the carving 20161119_165105.jpg 20161119_165617.jpg
And here's how the top came out after spreading it out some.20161119_170324.jpg
It needs a full wiring now but I'm finally happy with where this tree is headed.
Just for the heck of it here's how I got the tree (incase you didn't look at its progression lol)20160422_074140.jpg
Any opinions are welcome, thanks for looking!

Aaron
 

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aml1014

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Here's a current picture after a little wiring has been done.20161121_082227.jpg
I have yet to point out (though it's obvious from the pics) that the tree is now in my tropical greenhouse. This tree was originally collected outside of Fort Meyers Florida. I've looked it up and the coldest it's been there in at least 30 years is 31°f. This guy got 2 nights of 32°f and quickly told me it wasn't very happy about it.
20161121_082330.jpg 20161121_082340.jpg 20161121_082352.jpg
Needless to say during started for this subtropical oak two days ago.

Aaron
 

aml1014

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So after some more contemplation I removed the sub trunk on the right. It was to thick to put any movment into and it had no taper to speak of it also adied more taper to the top. The front also was changed about 45° to the right to add more depth to the carving, it also has the nicest flair at the base from this angle and there is more movment in the trunk.
20161203_122434.jpg
I feel it is finally headed somewhere and I can stop worrying about leader selection.
Thoughts?

Aaron
 

Potawatomi13

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Nice Oak to start from. Not aware of hardiness but suspect tree would just shed leaves till Spring if left outside. Also some difference in humidity from anywhere in Fla. Think looked better with upper 2nd trunk but one remaining can still be developed very well. As to cutting away trunk yes and no;).
 

aml1014

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Nice Oak to start from. Not aware of hardiness but suspect tree would just shed leaves till Spring if left outside. Also some difference in humidity from anywhere in Fla. Think looked better with upper 2nd trunk but one remaining can still be developed very well. As to cutting away trunk yes and no;).
The species is hardy to zone 6, but this tree was collected in south Florida so it's never seen Temps like we get here. I figure it's best to acclimate it over the next few years. as for that second trunk, it looked okay I'm pictures but in person it was an eyesore that stuck out, also when I bent it a few weeks back it almost split from the tree so it wasn't very secure or sturdy. I literally ripped it off lol

Aaron
 

bleumeon

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Personally I liked the top with 2 branches. I think oaks lend themselves well to an informal broom design. Visually the most interesting part of the tree is your trunk, so you want your branching to not only be mature, but close to the natural line of sight.

Here is my oak:



The front should hopefully backbud after my major chops next month. My side branches are still in development will be cut back and allowed to regrow and further thicken. The biggest dilemma with this tree is that to do with the apex. I had initially planned to cut it back and begin rammification but there would always be an awkward transition from the top deadwood to the leader. What I plan to do late winter is to abandon the top most branch completely. I will chop the tree significantly lower and build at least 2 top branches from the resulting backbudding. The tree is growing very well and all the live tissue has swelled so I'm fairly confident it will backbud.

Here is a quick virt. You can see in the end I lost my patience and drew scribbles for branching. I'm trying to do this on my phone and my fingers cover my line of sight.


My original plan was to build the apex like the design you drew out, but ultimately I think it will never look natural or good. These oaks are practically evergreen though and since they'll be covered in foliage year round I'm not sure if it matters much.

If I owned your tree I'd let it grow strong for a year to ensure after the work and carving the live tissue thickens and gains vigor. After you are confident in the stored energy it has built up I'd chop that top leader low and build sprawling branches closer to the top of the deadwood.

Here is an exaggerated example but generally you see all the primary branching at the apex originating from the same spot. As opposed to a single branch of significantly smaller diameter with branching developed from it.
I like @BobbyLane 's chinese elm: http://www.bonsainut.com/threads/chinese-elm-broom.19303/ and I think the form of the branching has a nice oak feel.
 

aml1014

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Personally I liked the top with 2 branches. I think oaks lend themselves well to an informal broom design. Visually the most interesting part of the tree is your trunk, so you want your branching to not only be mature, but close to the natural line of sight.

Here is my oak:



The front should hopefully backbud after my major chops next month. My side branches are still in development will be cut back and allowed to regrow and further thicken. The biggest dilemma with this tree is that to do with the apex. I had initially planned to cut it back and begin rammification but there would always be an awkward transition from the top deadwood to the leader. What I plan to do late winter is to abandon the top most branch completely. I will chop the tree significantly lower and build at least 2 top branches from the resulting backbudding. The tree is growing very well and all the live tissue has swelled so I'm fairly confident it will backbud.

Here is a quick virt. You can see in the end I lost my patience and drew scribbles for branching. I'm trying to do this on my phone and my fingers cover my line of sight.


My original plan was to build the apex like the design you drew out, but ultimately I think it will never look natural or good. These oaks are practically evergreen though and since they'll be covered in foliage year round I'm not sure if it matters much.

If I owned your tree I'd let it grow strong for a year to ensure after the work and carving the live tissue thickens and gains vigor. After you are confident in the stored energy it has built up I'd chop that top leader low and build sprawling branches closer to the top of the deadwood.

Here is an exaggerated example but generally you see all the primary branching at the apex originating from the same spot. As opposed to a single branch of significantly smaller diameter with branching developed from it.
I like @BobbyLane 's chinese elm: http://www.bonsainut.com/threads/chinese-elm-broom.19303/ and I think the form of the branching has a nice oak feel.
I liked the other trunk to but after the carving it was easy enough for me to literally grab the other one and rip it off (carved to deep). I was thinking about removing the upper most 4 branches (including apex branch) and wiring the 2 that are at the same level up and prune them back after a year of growth. I think this will give me better taper and it'll shorten the top more (which I still feel is to heavy).

Aaron
 

bleumeon

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I liked the other trunk to but after the carving it was easy enough for me to literally grab the other one and rip it off (carved to deep). I was thinking about removing the upper most 4 branches (including apex branch) and wiring the 2 that are at the same level up and prune them back after a year of growth. I think this will give me better taper and it'll shorten the top more (which I still feel is to heavy).

Aaron
I think there are a lot of ways you can take this tree. I don't know about your climate but oaks here grow and develop really fast. All the side branching on my tree was developed from one season of growth. Generally speaking I think "smooth" barked oaks will backbud well so as long as your tree is strong you can have a lot of options. I think you have a nice trunk, so take your time with coming up with the best option. It took me awhile to figure out what I wanted to do with my tree.
 

Potawatomi13

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Personally I liked the top with 2 branches. I think oaks lend themselves well to an informal broom design. Visually the most interesting part of the tree is your trunk, so you want your branching to not only be mature, but close to the natural line of sight.

Here is my oak:



The front should hopefully backbud after my major chops next month. My side branches are still in development will be cut back and allowed to regrow and further thicken. The biggest dilemma with this tree is that to do with the apex. I had initially planned to cut it back and begin rammification but there would always be an awkward transition from the top deadwood to the leader. What I plan to do late winter is to abandon the top most branch completely. I will chop the tree significantly lower and build at least 2 top branches from the resulting backbudding. The tree is growing very well and all the live tissue has swelled so I'm fairly confident it will backbud.

Here is a quick virt. You can see in the end I lost my patience and drew scribbles for branching. I'm trying to do this on my phone and my fingers cover my line of sight.


My original plan was to build the apex like the design you drew out, but ultimately I think it will never look natural or good. These oaks are practically evergreen though and since they'll be covered in foliage year round I'm not sure if it matters much.

If I owned your tree I'd let it grow strong for a year to ensure after the work and carving the live tissue thickens and gains vigor. After you are confident in the stored energy it has built up I'd chop that top leader low and build sprawling branches closer to the top of the deadwood.

Here is an exaggerated example but generally you see all the primary branching at the apex originating from the same spot. As opposed to a single branch of significantly smaller diameter with branching developed from it.
I like @BobbyLane 's chinese elm: http://www.bonsainut.com/threads/chinese-elm-broom.19303/ and I think the form of the branching has a nice oak feel.
Really like your tree as is. Seems to me removing current apex would be mistaken. With minor dead wood carving and not much time scar will heal over well. Once removed can not be put back. Really wish this was my tree;).
 

bleumeon

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Really like your tree as is. Seems to me removing current apex would be mistaken. With minor dead wood carving and not much time scar will heal over well. Once removed can not be put back. Really wish this was my tree;).
I don't want to derail someone else's thread, but my point was that the apex of the tree will always be so far removed from the rest and a major scar of that size will not heal unless the tree is allowed to grow freely for a number of years. Even assuming it does heal over the top of the tree will be awkardly shaped and will never flow quite well from the deadwood. Rather than trying to force something into an image I want everything to be cohesive where all the parts of the tree can be easily looked at. I think after all my primary branching begins to set in the tree will shape up much more nicely.


In short how I felt about Aaron's and my tree was that the apex was moving too far away from the trunk. Developing the tree from and outstretched and in my case back reaching branch makes everything feel disjointed.
 
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aml1014

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I was thinking yesterday "I better start watching that wire" I look today and a bunch of it was biting in!lol
I also remember the top starting growth earlier then the rest of the tree last year so I pruned some of the hardened off shoots to even out the energy.
Before20170119_165330.jpg
After20170119_165850.jpg
The carving is also starting to heal20170119_165914.jpg
Aaron
 

Haoleboy

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Here's my Laurel Oak. Dug it up January 5th. I managed to save a lot of feeder roots when I dug it up. Haven't seen any signs of life get though. I did take a knife and dug into the bark to see if it were still green a couple of weeks ago. It was still green. There's a lot of work to be done underneath the feeder roots yet. But I figured I'd keep as much as I could and address these roots in the future. I couldn't find much info on when to dig oaks and what I did, contradicted the other. So I dug it up and slapped it in a container.

Yours looks very nice. Hopefully mine will be as nice as yours one day.
 

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