Juniper cascade progression

Dav4

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This has been a fun tree to work on. It's a Juniperus squamata that I purchased 4 years ago as rough stock. This first image was taken during the summer of 2008.
 

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Dav4

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This is the tree this past week, after some tweeking with my study group.
 

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jk_lewis

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NICE!

How about a pic "head on?"
 

Vance Wood

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Very nice work.

If you have some bonsai books I would suggest that you look at the cascades in those books. Study the relationship between the pot and the tree, and especially the falling branch.
 

bonsai barry

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This looks like a great tree to work on, with lots of deadwood and healty veins, too. I've modified it for an alternative option. I've mostly reduced both the foilage and the deadwood, I changed the slant by four degrees to the left and I changed the direction of the tail end so it flowed with the jin at the bottom. Hope you're not disgusted by my efforts.
 

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Dav4

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NICE!

How about a pic "head on?"

Thanks, Jim. Here are several pictures from different angles.
 

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Dav4

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Very nice work.

If you have some bonsai books I would suggest that you look at the cascades in those books. Study the relationship between the pot and the tree, and especially the falling branch.

Thanks, Vance. I have an idea what you are getting at, but I'm hoping you could expand on your thoughts concerning this tree in particular and cascades in general.
 

Dav4

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Thanks for the post and virt, Bonsaibarry. I think your image is reasonable. However, I'm still growing out the apex and would be reluctant to remove it at this time. Also, in my mind, the apex gives the tree a very classical cascade image. Thanks again.
 

Vance Wood

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Thanks, Vance. I have an idea what you are getting at, but I'm hoping you could expand on your thoughts concerning this tree in particular and cascades in general.

There is a tendency in cascade design to put the cascade portion straight off to one side. There should be some interaction between the cascade branch and the side of the pot so you don't have a tree bent and poured over the side. This looks unnatural. You should have your front so that some portions of the pot are crossed or caressed by the falling branch or one of its elemental side branches. I find a cascade, as simple they seem in concept, very difficult to execute in the real world. There are so many pit falls and horticultural difficulties to make this one of the more complex forms in bonsai to pull off.
 

jk_lewis

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Thanks for the extra pictures. I certainly wish I had a plant of this quality to work on.

I would wish that the branches on the tail . . .

a. had a BIT more movement, and
b. could be pulled in closer to the trunk (when they stick out that far it gives a slight fishbone look).

I'd also do away with (or significantly shorten) the deadwood at the bottom of the tail. It dosn't look "real" to me and I feel that in "real life" dead branches that were this thin would have snapped off under the conditions that created them.

All that said -- and agreeing with Vance's comments -- this is a very nice tree. Wish it were mine.
 

Vance Wood

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Thanks for the extra pictures. I certainly wish I had a plant of this quality to work on.

I would wish that the branches on the tail . . .

a. had a BIT more movement, and
b. could be pulled in closer to the trunk (when they stick out that far it gives a slight fishbone look).

I'd also do away with (or significantly shorten) the deadwood at the bottom of the tail. It dosn't look "real" to me and I feel that in "real life" dead branches that were this thin would have snapped off under the conditions that created them.

All that said -- and agreeing with Vance's comments -- this is a very nice tree. Wish it were mine.

I hope no one thought I was inferring that this is not a nice tree, it's spectacular. It's worth the time to comment on and the time it is going to take to preserve its beauty. That is after all, the major problem with creating cascade bonsai. It's hard to maintain the health and vigor of the falling branch, this is not a natural configuration for most trees grown in the style and difficult to maintain.
 

october

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Outstanding tree..... I would love to see this one in person...
 

Dav4

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Jim, thanks for your comments, and I agree with you on each point. Now that I'm pinching back so much, I'm hoping to get some growth closer to the trunk on some of the leggy branches. Also, the "deadwood" on the end of the tail will get reduced some once it is set in place...it had foliage on it until last week and is still covered in bark and wire.
 

Dav4

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Vance, thanks for your thoughts on this tree and cascades in general. I agree with you to a point, but feel that, like most rules, you can bend or break them in certain instances. This tree was initially styled so that the cascading branch would wrap back to and under the pot. Unfortunately, that particular front also highlighted a very straight, boring section of upper trunk. By rotating the tree to the left a bit, that portion of trunk is partially hidden by the apex. Also, the back branches are in a better position to provide depth the tree. Having said all that, since the tree is in a round pot, it can be viewed and enjoyed from different fronts:). Thanks again.
 

Dav4

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Hey, Rob. You probably never saw this one way back when. I MIGHT have brought this one to a Wednesday night workshop once, maybe...the tree is HUGE, heavy, and very difficult to transport. Thanks for the comments.
 
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was playing around in photoshop... thought I might suggest a "little less is more" idea, but still trying to keep your intention...
I do like your tree sometimes you just have to wait for something to grow... but I thought this was another route???
 
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Dav4

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Quick update. The apex is developing nicely...need to refine the foliage pads and the deadwood a bit.
 

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Dav4

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This one was re-potted and trimmed back in March. The base was raised up a few inches to expose more of the deadwood. The foliage is lighter then normal, as it had a spider mite issue last fall...shocking, I know:eek:. Sorry for the crummy picture, but this tree is HEAVY and I was light headed when I took the picture, just after struggling to place on top of the blavck can which is 4 feet oof the ground...ugggh.
 

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