Schefflera rescue

Bodanger

Seedling
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So I came across this schefflera at a home depot that was neglected and covered in pigeon crap. I know it sounds weird but I kinda felt bad for the thing so bought it.

I took it home and cleaned up the base a bit so I could see what there was to work with a little better. It's pretty gnarly but it seems like there is potential there.
I'm kind of at a loss as to what direction I should take this. I know a lot of people dislike schefflera as bonsai but I'm hoping for some suggestions.

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Bodanger

Seedling
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go watch Nigel Saunders on youtube, schefflera master!!

Nigel on Youtube
I did that first thing, picked up some good info on pruning and shaping. I just don't know how I'd like to shape it. I'm thinking I'd like to be taller so the leaves are more in proportion.
 

Forsoothe!

Masterpiece
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You've got a lot of branches there. I find it a lot easier to choose what to do when I can see the architecture. I would defoliate it now by cutting all leaves off at some distance, maybe 3/4" from where the petiole is connected to the branch. (one leaf = five leaflets connected to a petiole) It's important not to damage the bud(s) in the axil of the petiole. The old petioles will be kicked off by the expanding buds, when they're good and ready. It will look horrible, but you'll be able to see all of what you have so you can choose what fits into your proposed canopy shape and the layers of branches below that. Whatever else is true, you design a shape by making space in strategic places, keeping only what can be forced to be where you want it. Less is more, etc. The longer you take to design it in your mind's eye before you cut anything off, the better. Flagging proposed cuts with bright colored tape or twist-ties and viewing it from different heights and angles will give you new insights. If you do that for some time period each day for a week, I absolutely guarantee that you will have a different front than you did the first day.
 
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