Michael Hagedorn and needle juniper techniques

Velodog2

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I am on his blog mailing list and received an email today discussing an excellent juniper he has been transforming. He says this about needle junipers:

"The training of Japanese Needle Juniper is quite unlike that of scale junipers, such as itoigawa or kishu. For Needle Junipers, the trees are left to run in the spring so that long shoots are everywhere before cutting them off in early summer...all off...down to a few millimeters of the new growth. Carefully orchestrating the cut, one can craft the curved dome of a pad. With this maintenance technique one is able to create very delineated pads with great structure, much like the look of old hinoki and crytomeria pad structure, with the 'fingers' of the shoots rising to a dense cap of foliage. Not fast going, a tree of this density can take much of a day's work, with very sharp scissors in one hand and a tweezer in the other to pull out debris from the inside."

I've been working on some foemina for a few years and have not heard of such extreme pruning. Does anyone have any insight or more detailed information regarding this technique? I was not able to find anything else on his blog.
 

Velodog2

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Sorry, I found the reference on his website I was looking for. Not sure I'm brave enough to do this on all the shoots. I wonder if it can be done partially and still work.
 
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zelk

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This is probably for trees in a very advanced stage of refinement.
 

Brian Van Fleet

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Hagedorn did a remarkable job transforming that foemina. It was an ugly tree before, and it was really a surprise to scroll down and see the current shot. Peter Tea wrote a couple good articles about trimming back tosho, and its definitely a refinement technique they're describing.
https://peterteabonsai.wordpress.com/2011/08/08/tosho-part-2/
 

Velodog2

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Thanks for the link. The info there is consistent with Michael's advice, but a little more explicit regarding determination of this year's growth. It makes better sense to me now. My trees are not yet refined so I will not be as aggressive as recommended.

I have work to do. Yay!
 

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