My largest Trident. What would you do?

grizzlywon

Shohin
Messages
259
Reaction score
1
Location
Fresno, CA. Were all the food comes from if we ha
USDA Zone
9A
This is the largest Trident I own, actually I think its the largest tree I have for bonsai. I bought it last year at our clubs yard sale for an obscenely low amount (Nov will be one year). The seller is a great guy who I think was being very generous to a newbie like me. He said he had paid the same amount about 10 years previously and that was a steal. Anyway, I know the tree has a lot of work to be done so here are some pics.

Here is what I am thinking but wanted some expert advice. It has about 3 very large and straight lower branches. Some are almost an inch in diameter! I air layered one but the other two don't have any branches near the trunk to chop back to. I assume that if I cut them back to about an inch or so in early spring they will bud from the cut? Is this correct?

The tree also stands about 5 feet tall. I am letting the leader grow to add some more taper at the top. The tree measures 3" wide and 19" tall to the base of the leader.

I also know the roots are a major problem. Should I ground layer it? Or is it much better to side graft smaller trees on? I have a bunch of seedlings growing I could use.

What would you guys do first and how would you do it?
 

Attachments

docs_bonsai

Yamadori
Messages
78
Reaction score
2
Grizzly, your last comment and picture I agree with. The trunk has a slight “S” in it that can be used for the future front. There are a few problems with the over all tree but they can all be smooth out and used in the design. I’ve done a lot of chops and I’ve always found the front first or what I thought would be the best front. From there you can go anywhere. The basic trunk comes next; you don’t have to consider limb structure at this point because without knowing the height, width and taper you don’t know where the limbs are going to go. Once you decide on those things you can go on. Next I look at the root structure. Remember you don’t necessarily have to have the perfect nebari. You can always graft roots to the base of your trunk. Even go as far as replacing the entire root system over a period of time. Lastly the chop mark it self, if you are going to rebuild the apex why not incorporate that scar into the design (hollow trunk, jin or shari). I’ve added a few pictures of the trees I’m currently working on. If interested in my techniques drop me a line. Questions and comments are always welcome.
Enjoy
 

Attachments

Messages
1
Reaction score
0
Design and then chop

I think the overall height is way too tall for the trunk. I would assume a major trunk chop is needed but before I chose where I would look at the nebari relative to the trunk. Decide now what the probable front is. Have several secondary fronts in mind. Now visualize what you generally want the finished or near finished tree to look like. Imagine the finished height, relative movement in the trunk, nebari, where the first branch will be, how the foliage will mass etc. You have to decide what the strong points are for the trunk as it is and work from there. Next I would decide where on the trunk I would chop. By the way, I wouldn't chop the tree until it is in it's dormant phase. It is important to look at how the chop might incorporate branching present at or just below the chop; some might want to carve a hollow trunk, others may want a perfectly healed-over scar. I have found here that only a rough chop should be done at first. In other words, leave a stub above where you will eventually carve to the finished profile. The stub will die back to a natural point during the next year after which time you can start to shape it for a final look. I think that it is true that the current branch placement and structure really doesn't matter too much at this point. You will soon enough be able to decide where a branch should be and to put it there (thread-grafting, approach-grafting, bud-grafting) or should you be lucky you will get an adventitious bud or two or three to sprout where you want them. Ditto the nebari. Easy enough to graft roots as needed. Now if you want to tell me you want a tree as tall or taller than this trunk, then I would respond that the trunk at the nebari is too small for that height. In that case I would grow out as many lower branches as possible to add girth lower down. Letting a leader grow at the top of a trunk like this won't add mass below as fast as growing out lower branches will. These can be sacrifice branches if they don't fit into you visualized finished tree. So you are at the beginning stages of what could be a very satisfying and beautiful tree. Good luck.
 

noissee

Mame
Messages
135
Reaction score
0
Location
florida panhandle
Maybe post it again when the leaves fall off so we can really see the structure and thickness of the branches.
 

grizzlywon

Shohin
Messages
259
Reaction score
1
Location
Fresno, CA. Were all the food comes from if we ha
USDA Zone
9A
Update

So you guys asked me to post it when it is bear, so here you go. I need some direction on this beast.

Please tell me where you guys would chop.

Tks!
 

Attachments

Mojosan

Mame
Messages
240
Reaction score
3
Location
Northern Idaho
USDA Zone
6
Cut that thickest lowest branch. It's too thick compared to the others and looks out of place.
 

bonsai barry

Omono
Messages
1,374
Reaction score
37
Location
Cental Coast of California
USDA Zone
9
I agree with mojosan, especially because it has a bar-branch effect. I think this tree will fill out nicely. If you are able to graft some roots, it will be a stately tree.
 

J W

Sapling
Messages
39
Reaction score
1
Location
Santa Rosa, CA
USDA Zone
9B
There's the nebrai to work on and the branches. You have acquired a nice piece of stock which is a lot to say in itself. You need to work with it and build it, start thinking about secondary branching and where they will go...

J W
 

camikins

Sapling
Messages
47
Reaction score
1
Location
Vancouver Island Canada
USDA Zone
8
Plant on angle?

Just posted, didn't appear. If this post ends up appearing twice, I apologize.

My suggestion for fun:
Plant on an angle, and make the thick branch on the right the new leader, with the smaller branch on the left acting as the 1st branch.

See virt for details.
Cam.
 

Attachments

Top Bottom