Large Trident Progression

Rodrigo

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In October 2017 I purchased this trident maple trunk from a local nursery. It was about 7-8 feet tall and wasn't quite ready to chop so I had to leave it at that nursery since it didn't fit in my balcony.
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In March 2018, I did a light repot there at the nursery into a Sara Rayner pot which I purchased from the owner for $35 because it had a small chip. I figured if I put the chip on the back it's not even noticeable so it was a steal.

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After a year of growth, I chopped it down lower in hopes of getting new buds below the first branch. At the time there was nothing useful below the branch so I didn't want to chop too low and risk losing the tree.

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In this picture you can see the growth the upper section had since I purchased it. You can tell the difference better in person. New on left, original on right
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In March 2020, I did a full bare root repot into the same pot and worked on clearing out all roots below the trunk. Unfortunately my phone died half way through and couldn't take many pictures.
Before:
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Luckily my attempt at getting new buds lower paid off and I got a bud exactly where I needed it for the next trunk section.
After repot, new bud circled:
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Continued in next post
 

Rodrigo

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May 2020, just a few weeks after the repot:

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This year it was ready to chop to the new leader that grew from the small bud circled in the last post.

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I chopped it at the end of April, leaving a stump for die back. I'll carve down to 45 degrees a later date.

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As of yesterday I'm already getting new buds even lower down.

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I think this tree has great potential for a long term project.
 

MACH5

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May 2020, just a few weeks after the repot:

View attachment 375077

This year it was ready to chop to the new leader that grew from the small bud circled in the last post.

View attachment 375078

I chopped it at the end of April, leaving a stump for die back. I'll carve down to 45 degrees a later date.

View attachment 375079

As of yesterday I'm already getting new buds even lower down.

View attachment 375080View attachment 375081

I think this tree has great potential for a long term project.


Agreed! Nice!!
 
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Is there a benefit to trimming the new leader back like that? I would have thought it would be better to leave it as long as possible.
 

Rodrigo

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Is there a benefit to trimming the new leader back like that? I would have thought it would be better to leave it as long as possible.
Good question! I cut it because it was too long and I'm trying to push buds down lower on the trunk. If I'd left it long, all of the energy would most likely go to that one branch and the chances of me getting lower buds would decrease.
Tridents grow like crazy so I'm not too worried about what I cut off, it'll grow back in no time
 

Slippery Pete

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Ooooooh boy do I look forward to having a fat trident trunk of my own. Nice find! I would have let section #2 get a tiny bit thicker before chopping, but I don't have the experience to know if that would be better or worse for final tree.

I'm wondering - is that some kanuma in your mix? If so, is it mixed throughout, or sprinkled at the top? I've wondered how a low % of kanuma (relative to % volume of all other substrate components) could benefit/harm growth of root system for trees which prefer *slight* acidic conditions. For instance, does uniformly-mixed kanuma create "pockets" of acidity, thereby hindering growth of roots in the immediate vicinity of each kanuma granule? Or rather does a uniform distribution of kanuma create a sort of equilibrium ph throughout the substrate? I haven't had any luck finding an answer - perhaps my search terms have been weak. I don't mean to hijack your thread at all, just figured I could toss this out there because I'm interested to hear your rationale (it's A-OK if there isn't one! haha) behind adding kanuma to your trident mix. Thanks
 

Rodrigo

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Ooooooh boy do I look forward to having a fat trident trunk of my own. Nice find! I would have let section #2 get a tiny bit thicker before chopping, but I don't have the experience to know if that would be better or worse for final tree.

I'm wondering - is that some kanuma in your mix? If so, is it mixed throughout, or sprinkled at the top? I've wondered how a low % of kanuma (relative to % volume of all other substrate components) could benefit/harm growth of root system for trees which prefer *slight* acidic conditions. For instance, does uniformly-mixed kanuma create "pockets" of acidity, thereby hindering growth of roots in the immediate vicinity of each kanuma granule? Or rather does a uniform distribution of kanuma create a sort of equilibrium ph throughout the substrate? I haven't had any luck finding an answer - perhaps my search terms have been weak. I don't mean to hijack your thread at all, just figured I could toss this out there because I'm interested to hear your rationale (it's A-OK if there isn't one! haha) behind adding kanuma to your trident mix. Thanks
Thank you!
I was debating letting it get thicker too but didn't for two reasons:
1. This tree thickens incredibly fast, I didn't want it to get too thick and it be out of "chopping season" when I need to chop and potentially ruin the transition.
2. Although the tree is large, I didn't want to TOO large, the thicker the middle section is, the taller the overall tree needs to be. It may continue thickening a tad bit more in the coming year.

I don't use kanuma for any of my trees. The original mix it was in when I bought it in 2017 seemed to be mainly lava rock and a bit of pumice. As soon as I repotted into APL mix (akadama, lava, pumice) it took off growing. That's the final mix you see in the last pictures
 

Rodrigo

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Nice project for sure! Its really nice when they respond how you expect them too....
Thank you! Yes, I love when that happens. This tree has surprised me multiple times, always doing what I need it to.

It's also good to see buds low on both sides because since it didn't have low branches, I wasn't sure if the trunk was alive on all sides so I can graft if needed. But judging by the buds I'm getting I may not even need to!
 

JonW

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Very nice! I have one that I did the first trunk chop on, so I have a similar road ahead.
 

Rodrigo

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Does anyone have any advice on possibly grafting roots (however many would look natural) in the gap in the front of the tree? I've never root grafted before.

My concern is that the trunk doesn't flare as much in the middle as it does the sides and I am not sure if grafting roots would help or if I should just leave it alone.

It doesn't bother me the way it is, just trying to develop the best tree possible.

Same picture as earlier post just for reference

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HENDO

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Does anyone have any advice on possibly grafting roots (however many would look natural) in the gap in the front of the tree? I've never root grafted before.

My concern is that the trunk doesn't flare as much in the middle as it does the sides and I am not sure if grafting roots would help or if I should just leave it alone.

It doesn't bother me the way it is, just trying to develop the best tree possible.

Same picture as earlier post just for reference

View attachment 375885

Check out @markyscott trident maple content on here - his posts on these topics are pure gold.

I had similar material with large field roots, and if I remember correctly, it was advised to continue trunk/profile development before messing with grafts a whole lot.
 

clem

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The more you wait, the more foliage will grow on the upper part of the tree, and this foliage will give shadow on the graft below. The graft below need sunlight to grow so it is better to do your graft next spring imo. And the sooner you graft the more your grafted cutting have time (years) to thicken and catch up with the actual big roots. So, IMO, the sooner the better.
Maybe a thread graft, with a long drill and with a trident cutting as it is said to be easiyer to succeed.
I quote @MACH5 who is a pro in case he wants to give you advises
 

Rodrigo

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The more you wait, the more foliage will grow on the upper part of the tree, and this foliage will give shadow on the graft below. The graft below need sunlight to grow so it is better to do your graft next spring imo. And the sooner you graft the more your grafted cutting have time (years) to thicken and catch up with the actual big roots. So, IMO, the sooner the better.
Maybe a thread graft, with a long drill and with a trident cutting as it is said to be easiyer to succeed.
I quote @MACH5 who is a pro in case he wants to give you advises
I agree with you first sentence about doing it soon if doing it at all. My concern with doing the graft is that the trunk kind of "dips" inwards in that area since there has been no roots there. Would the graft cause the trunk to "catch up" to the rest, obviously with enough time. I think I'm just going to leave it as is since it's not terrible
 

Rodrigo

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These pictures were taken about a week ago, just two weeks after the chop.
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I would like some advice on a couple of things:
1. The stub hasn't started dying off yet, when should I carve that down?
2. My next leader emerges from the trunk at too low of an angle in my opinion. In the photo below, you can see there's a bud pointing straight up about a nm or two from the trunk. Would it be better to use that as the leader instead of the already woody branch?
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Gaston

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These pictures were taken about a week ago, just two weeks after the chop.
View attachment 380371
View attachment 380372
View attachment 380375

I would like some advice on a couple of things:
1. The stub hasn't started dying off yet, when should I carve that down?
2. My next leader emerges from the trunk at too low of an angle in my opinion. In the photo below, you can see there's a bud pointing straight up about a nm or two from the trunk. Would it be better to use that as the leader instead of the already woody branch?
View attachment 380373
View attachment 380374
Bump, i have a similar tree so, i'm interested yo know as well !!

Thanks !
 
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