Junk in my clump! Poor mans counterfeit Ezo.

Wilson

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I have always loved the clump bonsai, and when I saw the potential in this one I grabbed it. @MACH5 has shared some beauty clumps, and Michael Hagedorn's mt.hemlock clumps are a favourite of mine. I also love the images of ezo spruce, but will most likely never be able to buy one, so this spruce from Iseli will do the job. I bought the tree knowing it has it's faults. there is inverse taper just up the main trunk from two branches creating a bulge. It seems like a very strong grower, with loads of tight internodes, so I look forward to working it. I removed a lot of green, and know there is more to go. I hope people will share there ideas/input as to how to see the design.IMG_7808.JPGIMG_7809_LI.jpgIMG_7810.JPGt1.JPGt2.JPGt3.JPGt4.jpgt5.JPGt6.JPGtompa.jpg
I drew up on a couple of the areas I would love some feedback. First one with the red and yellow shows the inverse taper/multiple branches, and the other purple/yellow shows possible repositioning of the small front trunk. @just.wing.it this is the one we talked about. Thanks for any help!
 

Wires_Guy_wires

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That's an interesting piece! Lots of possibilities. Going with the flow, I'd say this will become a triple trunk clumb.
It took my picea a full year after pruning to start backbudding which revealed loads of new options. I think with spruce, that's kind of the way to go; open it up, and a year later it will respond by giving you opportunities where there were none.
 

Wilson

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That's an interesting piece! Lots of possibilities. Going with the flow, I'd say this will become a triple trunk clumb.
It took my picea a full year after pruning to start backbudding which revealed loads of new options. I think with spruce, that's kind of the way to go; open it up, and a year later it will respond by giving you opportunities where there were none.
Which three trunks do you see being used? I know this piece will evolve quite a bit over the next few years, so it is great to hear other ideas. Thanks for your input!
 

Wires_Guy_wires

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sprooz.png
Red= removed. Beige = jinned or removed.
I would do something like this at first glance. Then you'll have three trunks with different ages and different stages. But it seems that it's very 2-dimensional. I would pull the right trunk backwards to try and fix that a little. This reduces it's size visually a bit more, so that it falls in place better with the rest as a very young trunk. Maybe even pull the left trunk forward at the bottom pointing backwards at the apex. That would add some more dimensionality to it.
 

sorce

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When was it cut back?
How long have you had it?

Here's my thing....

Them secondary branches ...the ones that need backbudding....what if when you cut it back...they don't bud...

Flip...

What if the straight trunks you intend to remove would have budded right where you need them for first branchi?

Plus too many trunks to think over quickly w/o rotation.

I would live with it.
Get\keep it real healthy till one more good backbudding time...
Hit it hard and see if it decides anything for you.

Sorce

P.S. love that you're still trying to credit the owner of that tree.
 

Wilson

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When was it cut back?
How long have you had it?

Here's my thing....

Them secondary branches ...the ones that need backbudding....what if when you cut it back...they don't bud...

Flip...

What if the straight trunks you intend to remove would have budded right where you need them for first branchi?

Plus too many trunks to think over quickly w/o rotation.

I would live with it.
Get\keep it real healthy till one more good backbudding time...
Hit it hard and see if it decides anything for you.

Sorce

P.S. love that you're still trying to credit the owner of that tree.

I bought this from a great old nursery doing a clearance, it was late spring. I do intend to see what it brings me next spring, but this is a vigorous nursery tree. I have a photo at home of how it buds, very strong. I will do up a a little spinnin vid sometime soon.
I would love to find out where that tree is from!? It's another one of those classic internet truths, it's marked Chicago but its tropical in the background!

@Wires_Guy_wires _Guy_ I like what you're thinking!
 

Cosmos

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I bought this from a great old nursery doing a clearance, it was late spring. I do intend to see what it brings me next spring, but this is a vigorous nursery tree. I have a photo at home of how it buds, very strong. I will do up a a little spinnin vid sometime soon.!

You gotta give me the address of that nursery! Everywhere I go, I check the spruce, but they never have a wild, overgrown feel like this one. Great find.

I sort of agree with both sorce and wires... if this were my tree, I would push growth first, maybe adress the roots, and then reevaluate depending on the backbudding. The design solutions are probably going to involve deadwood, that’s a given. I think having that fleeing branch on the left opens up possibilities to tilt the whole thing.

To add to the inspiration pictures of this thread, one of my favourite Mirai trees:

 

Wires_Guy_wires

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Good to hear that @Wilson but I think Sorce is making a valid point.
What if those 'what ifs' turn out in the negative sense?
Then you'll be left with something like my first-ever bonsai attempt. Which will take a few years or maybe decades to restore. Sentimental value and the fat but hidden root base have left me with no other option than to keep it. I have the time, I have been a ignorant rookie, I want this as a reminder. It's a prime example what can go wrong, if you do everything wrong. I'm kind of proud at the high level of up-fuckery in this one, it takes some impulsiveness to not stop and think at all about what you're doing.
Ready for some horror?

20181101_134934 (1).jpg

If there's a screw-up competition, feel free to enter this one. It'll sure produce some laughs somewhere. It brings a smile to my face every time I see it.
 

Leo in N E Illinois

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What species of spruce do you have? We know it is not Ezo, what is it? Not that it matters a whole lot, not spruce have similar horticultural needs.

As Sorce said, to offer help, a look of all sides of clump would help. But you have been looking at this clump for a season. When in doubt, let it grow another cycle.

If it were mine, maybe best to just repot it in spring into a training pot, Anderson flat or homebuilt box that is less than 4 inches deep. Pot should be wide enough it holds almost as much media as it's current nursery pot.

Get a look at the nebari, start training the roots. The nebari may suggest where to go with this tree. Other choices may arise logically once you see the nebari. So if it were mine, I'd start with the roots.
 

Wilson

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By the way, if it were mine I'd be thinking about a 5 or 6 trunk clump. No need to get to three trunks right away. Think in terms of 5 or 6. You can remove more down the road as the clump evolves.

I ģot this tree with the sure intent to keep it a clump, 4-6+ trunks. I am in no rush, and won't risk killing the tree. It's a Norway spruce "Tompa", pretty fun tree! Your knowledge is always appreciated Leo!
 

Leo in N E Illinois

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Kigi and Springhill nurseries list 'Tompa' as growing 2 to 4 inches a year. This is slow, but not impossibly slow. Both said it tends to be wider than tall, and both say it is superior to Dwarf Alberta spruce. I'll be interested in following the progress of this one
 

Wilson

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Kigi and Springhill nurseries list 'Tompa' as growing 2 to 4 inches a year. This is slow, but not impossibly slow. Both said it tends to be wider than tall, and both say it is superior to Dwarf Alberta spruce. I'll be interested in following the progress of this one

I will be sure to upload a photo of the tight internodes tonight, super nice. I am good with slow outward growth, since I am more trying to compact over the next few seasons. I am intrigued as well about this tree, as a wasn't ever considering buying a Tompa spruce.
 

LanceMac10

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Man, Ezo spruce.....NEBG had one a couple years ago that I checked out a few times....6-7" tall, little bit "Christmas tree" shaped and what have you, great branching, you know the routine.......





$700 US before Mass tax.....gulp!!! Couldn't do it!! Not even in a pot, just a nursery can!! I like yours here......go with a shallow, good sized grow box. Over the years, NEBG has had numerous collected Colorado blues in pretty big grow boxes. Some even had a similar profile as you tree.

Compacting? How much? Or just bring some foliage in, closer to the trunk? Fun project, 'fer sure far out, bro!!!;):D:D:D:D:D:D:D:D
 

Wilson

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Man, Ezo spruce.....NEBG had one a couple years ago that I checked out a few times....6-7" tall, little bit "Christmas tree" shaped and what have you, great branching, you know the routine.......





$700 US before Mass tax.....gulp!!! Couldn't do it!! Not even in a pot, just a nursery can!! I like yours here......go with a shallow, good sized grow box. Over the years, NEBG has had numerous collected Colorado blues in pretty big grow boxes. Some even had a similar profile as you tree.

Compacting? How much? Or just bring some foliage in, closer to the trunk? Fun project, 'fer sure far out, bro!!!;):D:D:D:D:D:D:D:D
Even in the Mirai podcast with the guys from Telperion joked about planting Ezo, and how it would take generations to grow! So yup I am doing this thing for now. I love spruce, Colorado, red, black, white, they're all beauty!
Compacting mostly the long reach of the back branches, and yes bring in the foliage. Thanks for the encouragement brother!
 

Wilson

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Here is a couple shots of the growth, pretty tight. Like you mentioned Leo, probably from slow growth pattern.IMG_7789.JPGIMG_7790.JPG
 

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