Pinus contorta var murrayana progression

parhamr

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I obtained this tree in 2014 and I'm progression from upright to slanted. It is the Cascade Range subspecies of the Lodgepole Pine. I have a trunk notch started with the intent of folding it over on that line. That styling would turn it into a mashed and contorted mountain tree. This will not happen until fall of 2017 or 2018.

June 2014; permit-harvested near Diamond Lake, OR
IMG_0698.JPG

March 2015
IMG_0701.JPG

Backbudding started! Many of these buds comprise the current foliage. I've had success chasing buds back up the branches.
IMG_0699.JPG

June 2015; I started bending and notching the trunk with a bender tool
IMG_0702.JPG

January 2016; the test bending tool was removed
IMG_0703.JPG

July 2016; I repotted and re-applied the bending tool after wrapping the trunk to protect it from the heavy bends I was starting to make
IMG_9235.JPG

March 2017; after some minor pruning and wiring
IMG_0695.JPG

As I said, it'll likely be fall 2017 or 2018 when I attempt a hard bend to fold the tree over on itself. I am not intending to make a literati but that seems to be another possible option.

Updates to come when relevant.
 

Eric Group

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I like the lower curves you added but the tell tale DENT from that torture device is going to be tough to heal. (Or is that the notch you mentioned?) Those things are rough on trees man... I have found Pines to be among the best to use them on... they tend to shred anything else, even Junipers just seem to develop a big dead spot where they are used. I have pretty much stopped using those clamps all together.

I do not dislike the slanting look you have with this one now, and folding it over at this size of trunk could be rough on the tree... You planning to split the trunk when you do it?
 

parhamr

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@Eric Group yes,the horrendous dent/knotch is from the terrible bending tool. I'm not going to continue using them. That is where I'm going to bend it over and I'm quite sure it'll work with vet wrap and a deeper saw cut into the knotch.

Thanks for the feedback.
 

bleumeon

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Cool tree, looks like a nice species to work with. I think this is nice pre-bonsai stock. Hopefully those notches and cuts heal in time.

I have been a big fan of using guy wires. I typically set several anchor points on a pot so I can apply multiple wires. It lets me get tighter bends where I would not of had with just wire. I see in some styling videos people use rebar with wood as a support and guy wire the trunk at various sections to introduce movement into the trunk. In some old bjorn videos they did that to a white pine with a fairy hefty trunk. I am sure you can get even better bends on your trunk using that method.
 

parhamr

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@bleumeon Yeah! Guy wires and rebar are my torture plans. I figure I'll need to use two of my 3-foot lengths of rebar for proper leverage. One will go above the bend and the other below. I'll then pull them together like scissors.
 

parhamr

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Here's a two-minute sketch

IMG_0695.JPG

(The lower right foliage would go away)
 

Vance Wood

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Your original post seemed to indicate that your have already cut the notch/wedge for the bend, just waiting for latter to do the bend. Did I read this correctly, you have already cut the notch but not closed it? You wrote: I have a trunk notch started with the intent of folding it over on that line.
 

Mike Hennigan

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Yea the thing about those bending clamps is that they don’t really bend well either for all the damage they can inflict. They don’t have real leverage. Better off with rebar and guy wires etc. I really like the design direction your taking the tree.
 

Vance Wood

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I obtained this tree in 2014 and I'm progression from upright to slanted. It is the Cascade Range subspecies of the Lodgepole Pine. I have a trunk notch started with the intent of folding it over on that line. That styling would turn it into a mashed and contorted mountain tree. This will not happen until fall of 2017 or 2018.

June 2014; permit-harvested near Diamond Lake, OR
View attachment 136943

March 2015
View attachment 136946

Backbudding started! Many of these buds comprise the current foliage. I've had success chasing buds back up the branches.
View attachment 136944

June 2015; I started bending and notching the trunk with a bender tool
View attachment 136947

January 2016; the test bending tool was removed
View attachment 136948

July 2016; I repotted and re-applied the bending tool after wrapping the trunk to protect it from the heavy bends I was starting to make
View attachment 136949

March 2017; after some minor pruning and wiring
View attachment 136942

As I said, it'll likely be fall 2017 or 2018 when I attempt a hard bend to fold the tree over on itself. I am not intending to make a literati but that seems to be another possible option.

Updates to come when relevant.
Now I understand your process and I agree with your assessment about the bending jacks.
 

River's Edge

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Here’s the notch/dent in detail. The tree has put on considerable girth this year, so it’s a bit less deep than before. I think I’m ready to make an actual, wedge-cut botch this winter to make the bend.
View attachment 208625
I have found the " Jack " very useful for controlled bends in combination with rebar. It allows for a progressive bend instead of all at once. Also it is easy to sense the degree of strain in the turnbuckle as you apply the force. This enables one to pick the time to rest the bend for a while before progressing! I have a set of two ( medium and large) which i purchased from Jonas! Excellent quality and function!
 

my nellie

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Nice healthy grow, @parhamr It shall be a beautiful bonsai.
Regarding your inspiration photo, how difficult/easy do you find it to reform the original tree to the trunkline on the photo?
It will be interesting to follow this thread.

@Riversedgebonsai and everyone, wouldn't it be easier to make the bends at an earlier age?
What the difference would be if the tree had already been bent from 2014?
Thank you!
 

parhamr

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I sized it up…
4813AD25-4247-410F-9C5F-FBE5A5F3A4A4.jpeg

…decided the wedge would come out of this straight section in the center…
A5B729F5-9D2D-4C3A-A41D-4290432DD408.jpeg

…cut a notch about halfway into the diameter of the trunk…
06583118-DB83-49D3-9B10-B9B26ADC03A6.jpeg

…protected the trunk, strapped on some rebar, tied up some galvanized steel wire, and cranked on the jack…
AA242813-02BF-44E1-9474-9E5A9F8681FD.jpeg
(this is just before the sides closed right up against each other)

Here’s how I did:20F6A993-7FB9-489A-A07C-A2F0E2D95166.jpeg

The backside of the bend site tore a bit during the bend. I sealed it up with some cut paste but I may have killed off the top of the tree. Fortunately, there’s a strong, living branch below the bend.

?
 

PiñonJ

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If I’m seeing it correctly in the photos, you could have taken a much wider angle on the wedge cut, thus decreasing the fulcrum that caused the tearing on the back side. Here are some shots of a ponderosa that I bent last year with a wedge cut, no rebar required. The major bend was easy. Then I held it down with a guy wire and shaped it further with 4 gauge. There were minor splits on the back side that I sealed with cut paste. Didn’t seem to slow things down.
C970DDBC-CC01-44BC-B807-2004045870F6.jpeg53ACD698-A976-4F07-A215-0B9F88492E05.jpeg1E115705-D954-4B94-8726-70C523E99AE4.jpegA12F2212-5B8D-4CAF-90DE-BB7EF43C09A9.jpeg
 
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