PBA show


Spuds Moyogi
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Fairfax Va.
Here's a photo of my live oak at the PBA juried show this weekend. I wanted to post some others of the exhibit, but I'm having some issues with the digital quality of my pics (this was taken by a friend)...This didn't win any prizes, but I really enjoyed participating in the event. The entire process of exhibiting was terrific and I learned quite a lot.

A very, very good Japanese White Pine semi-cascade won the event--which was judged by Steve Tolley from the UK. Second place was a big collected Douglas Fir and in third place of all things was a limeberry (Triphasia trifolia) a southeast asian native that's not usually seen here in the US...I've never seen one outside of the Arb's collection.

I post my tree here mainly because I had asked Al for advice on the stand in the run up to the show. He suggested using a "jiita"-- a plain weathered board usually reserved for accent plantings and are kind of small--as this tree is pretty large. A formal stand that would "fit" this tree would not only be expensive, but would be kind of clumsy. I expanded the jiita idea to this 36" x 26" platform made from old barn wood. Thanks for the help Smoke.


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I think it turned out quite well. I like the tree on the board, since it is a rather imformal pot it works really well. Nice job Mark.

How tall is this tree?
The tree is 36" from soil line to the top. The nebari is about nine inches across.
Thanks Al and Bill. I thought the stand turned out pretty well too. The tree has some issues that we're working on.:D
So that was your tree! Cool! I really did like the stand as well. I attended Steve's critique of the trees on Saturday evening and if memory serves correctly, he commented positively about the stand.

I didn't get to the critique Sat. night--previous work commitments, so I didn't hear what Steve had to say. :eek::eek:

I did hear through the grapevine that he thought the pot this tree is in is not a perfect fit since the container is more suited for an evergreen.

Thing is, this IS an evergreen-- for the most part...:D No reason he'd know that though.
I didn't get to the critique Sat. night--previous work commitments, so I didn't hear what Steve had to say. :eek::eek:

I did hear through the grapevine that he thought the pot this tree is in is not a perfect fit since the container is more suited for an evergreen.

Thing is, this IS an evergreen-- for the most part...:D No reason he'd know that though.

Seriously!! LOL, thats funny. Yeah, he said he did know anything about the tree.

A couple things stood out for me in his comments of your tree (hope you don't mind me saying them here). If I am remembering correctly, I think he said that he saw two trees. He remarked about cutting it above the second foliage pad on the left. By reducing the height, you emphasize the massive trunk. He also would have liked to see you accent the deadwood area on the root and incorporate what he believed to be a dead area just above the visible deadwood. He felt like it was being hidden. The last comment I remember was something he said about most all the trees and that was better ramification.

I think your tree has great potential. I look forward to seeing it submitted again in the future.

Thanks Ted. I appreciate it.

Steve's comment were right on. I've been struggling with the deadwood issue for some time with this tree. The problem is that the wood is so dense I've burned through three or four tungsten cutting heads on the Dremel...I counted 160 rings in that bottom deadwood area the last time I took a run at carving it. That's 160 rings in a seven inch area--DENSE wood...

The deadwood areas are also a bit small to work with an angle grinder with a wood mover attachment, but I'll have to try it. If I can move enough of the wood out of there, a hollow might look good--although that brings up all kinds of drainage issues with it that low on the trunk though.

The other deadwood areas are higher on the tree--were where major branches were removed. I think Basically hollowing them out --as I have already done with one in front--produce "knotholes" typical of old oaks.

Not going to be two trees, though :D. I've spent 10 years growing out the apex from a finger diameter shoot. As for ramification, this spring the oak was cut back significantly--more than 50 percent of the apex branches were removed in March. As much lower growth was also taken off at the same time. It's pushed significantly more new shoots from old wood--which show in the photo.

I showed this one too soon, I think. It has some work to be done, but I did have a lot of fun with the event. I recommend it to anyone. Exhibiting trees opens new doors and isn't the snake pit of competition some seem to think it is. It's exactly the opposite. Everyone participated with a spirit of comradeship and ecouragement.
The next few posts are the other trees in the exhibit:

These are in no particular order. The bald cypress is notable because it was grown from seed in the owner's backyard. He collected the seed from a tree on Maryland's eastern shore, plucking a cone from a BC as he floated underneath it in a canoe. A brother tree from the same seed is a 40 foot landscape tree in his backyard...


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Chinese Elms, ponderosa pine and Doug. Fir


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The Douglas Fir took second prize and the Japanese White Pine han kengai took first:


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THe limeberry took third place.


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The white pine was great!!! At the critique it was presented differently. The stand was just a bit shorter and the woodwork was thinner and a bit darker. It fit better with the overall composition. That said, I really loved that tree. It feels somewhat calming when I look at it.
The judged exhibition was great this year. I didn't have a chance to attend Tolley's official critique, but I did catch him the early Friday morning of the show as he was taking notes on the various trees. He's a really nice guy, and he took me and another gentleman around and talked to us a bit about the various trees which was very informative and a lot of fun.

One day I hope to be able to show a tree in the exhibit - regardless of whether I won a prize or not, it would be a great honor to display a tree amongst so many incredible specimens :D
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