Nagasaki Crab Apple

Mike Jones

Seedling
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I have been partners with this tree for almost three decades now. Whilst I grow it in a different manner than rounded, I like the shape and it works for me.

I re-potted almost to bare root just four weeks ago. It was overdue a re-pot by three years as indeed I was overdue a spine operation for the ol rods and screws. Anyhow it was just a pot full of roots with little soil left (just where does that soil go?)

It is just a few days away now from fully opening of all those pink buds to white flowers. There are those that will only re-pot Nagasaki after flowering to maximise flower production; I have always re-potted late winter as buds show green, and have always re-potted in this manner.

This year the tree has produced in the region of 300-400 flower buds. Fruit will be reduced by 80%. I always reduce fruit after re-potting year.

80cm tall, 8cm trunk diameter.

Tree at purchase in 1984

jun08288.jpg


Today as flower is about to erupt.

vLoIK.jpg
 

Attila Soos

Omono
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What a beauty.
One thing I would do this season, to improve the impression of age: I would let the lowest few branches to grow unhindered, all season long (with this, I mean the main branch line, not the secondary or tertiary ramifications). Just the 3 lowest branches. If they double in diameter, that would make the tree look much older. To do that, you let the apex of the branch grow, and you actually remove any ramification past the current silhouette, so that the branch will look like a lion's tail: with ramifications close to the end of the branch. This way it doesn't take away any light from the rest of the tree. Next spring you can cut it back again to re-gain the current silhouette. This would also benefit the tree for health reasons - it would prevent the possibility to drop the lowest branches, as the tree gets older.

Just an example, the first low branch on the left has a very nice movement, but it looks very thin and weak. You can never know, and one spring you may see that the branch is not pushing any green, and it is dead (which would be a serious blow to your design). I've seen that happen to me this year, with an elm that is otherwise very strong and healthy. The lowest branch was rather thin, and the tree has decided that there is no reason to keep it, since there are plenty of strong branches above, that have a better chance to reach for the light. And apples tend to sucker easily, so dropping a branch is no big deal for them. But it would never happen with a thick and strong branch.
 
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DaveV

Shohin
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Nice tree Mike! I love seeing trees that have been with the same owner that long.
 

Brian Underwood

Chumono
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Agreed! Your history with that tree spans more than my entire life so far. Very impressive. Also, I enjoyed your website, thanks for sharing.
 

Mike Jones

Seedling
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Thank you all, great comments,

Mike
 

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