Shohin Costal Redwood

october

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Big plans for this little guy...:)

Around 9 inches tall with approx. 2 1/2 inch base.
 

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Bill S

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Rob, if you tell me you got this little beauty from the mark down benches, I'll,I'll,I'll, well i'llget ill.:D
 

october

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Hi Bil,...lol......Nope... A whole different story here...lol...

Rob
 

Redwood Ryan

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I hate you. I hate you. I hate you. I wish we could get those around my area :(

And yes, they do grow here :D
 
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Congrats it is hard to find such quality material such as this little gem with such taper and stature without having a huge cut scar
 

october

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Thanks everyone..This tree is probably one of the best shohin redwoods I have come across.

Rob
 

Attila Soos

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Well, before everybody gets too excited about this trunk, there is still a long way to go until it becomes a bonsai.
The tree has practically no branches, just juvenile sprouts. And one of the hardest thing with redwoods is to create short and thick branches, and dense foliage pads. This shohin has a massive trunk, so it will need equally spectacular branches to complete the picture.
If not done perfectly right, the tree often responds with losing the existing branch and re-sprouting from the base, and sometimes, just giving up and dying. That's because the redwood is a giant tree, wants to grow fast, and hates to be constantly messed with. (I have a number of trunks similar to this one, and trying to put branches on them, just like you).

So, I hope that it will respond favorably to your training, and it will be in good health for years to come. It will be a great challenge to make it work. I am working with literally hundreds of species, and redwood is one of the most difficult trees to work with, due to its unpredictable and finnicky nature. As a comparison, working with a juniper is a walk in the park.
 
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rockm

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Still, this one has a lot of potential as a shohin. Very nice trunk on it...

Ryan,

They CAN grow here, but as bonsai, they are marginally hardy at best :(. Believe me, I've looked into it a bit :eek:. Unless you have reliable winter storage facilities, you will have problems with die back and winter kill with this species here in a container. They are hardy to Zone 7, which means one bad winter with below average temps and Bam...dead tree, or dead trunk, or a half dead trunk, or no branches...
 

october

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Hell Attila and rock...
Actually, the branches were already wired and chosen by the place that I purchased it from. There is a first branch, back branch, second branch and a couple of other branches. I will, however, need to develope another side branch on the right from a young, still green branch. All of the pre designated branches have started to harden off.

I am well prepared as far as the proper conditions on keeping these trees and was aware of it's requirments before I purchased it:)...

Here is the tree cleaned up a bit. You can somewhat see all the primary branches and also the very nice taper and form throughout the tree.

Rob
 

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Attila Soos

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Hell Attila and rock...
Actually, the branches were already wired and chosen by the place that I purchased it from. There is a first branch, back branch, second branch and a couple of other branches.

Right, you have plenty of branches at the right places, to work with. The challenge, however, is to develop these branches into thick, well tapered, good looking mature branches. From working on my redwoods, I've found that not as easy as it seems (as with other, "normal" species). Usually, developing branches is a slam dunk in my world, there is nothing to it. But apparently, redwoods seem to have their own mind, in these matters....:( (it makes me nervous just thinking about it).
 
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october

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I will definitely heed your precautions about branch development. As of now, I have an idea, where I might cut the now forming branches... You are right that it does prove difficult. On one hand, do not want to cut the branch so the branch thickens and matures, on the other hand, I do not want to lose the taper... I only did some clean up on it to let some light and air flow through the tree. I also left some small branchlets that sprouted were the chops were made to promote faster healing..
 

october

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p.s. Perhaps we are being too diligent in trying to achieve perfection here.. Yes, we would like to achieve mature, well tapered branches, but when should this quest for perfection be abandoned or down graded. If we let the branches grow and cut back to a small bud, then let that grow, we can get taper.. However, will it culminate into what we want. I mean, it will take years, ( I don't mind if it does)..to grow it out, then cut back, then grow it out. However, I think that a healthy branch, that has some taper, maybe not perfect might be ok...

My plan is to be somewhere in the middle.. Not cutting back too far to a small bud so that I have to grow practiaclly a whole new branch to achieve taper, but maybe picking a bud almost at the end of the branch... where I will cut so the the branch tapers mostly at the tip..
 

Attila Soos

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The problem I had with branch development, was that I started pruning them too early, while not mature enough, and they just stopped growing. Then they died, and new buds came out from the base of the branch. In hindsight, I suspect that the tree was too weak (lack of fertilizing) to respond well to branch pruning.
On the other hand, if you let the branch grow totally free, it will look too leggy, with internodes a mile apart. That doesn't work with a shohin. You need dense internodes (that's what I thought at the time).

This year, with my new group of redwoods, I have a different approach: I let the branches grow freely, let them thicken and lignify...even if there are too leggy. But I wire them at the right angle and position. In the meantime, I fertilize and keep the tree in top shape.
Next year, when I have branches a couple of feet long, I take off the wire (mostly guy wires that bring them down), and cut them back, looking for a new bud to be selected as the new branch leader.
I remove the superfluous growth, and let it grow again for a whole season.
The key here is: just one cut per year, and removal of all the suckers. With other species, I can do much more, but with redwood, as little as possible.
After a few years of repeating this, I hope to have enough taper and thickness, so that I can start pinching to create some nice pads. I think that redwood branches need to achieve a critical mass before they are viable enough to last. Otherwise, easy come, easy go, they don't last too long, and keep frustrating the hell out of me. Also, in this time, you have to be prepared that the tree will look like a shapeless shrub, and not the bonsai you envision.
 
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Smoke

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You are doomed........
 

Brian Underwood

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I always find these responses a bit odd, unless maybe we are in completely different zones and you guys are trying to grow redwoods in Kentucky... in which case never mind me...
I have only had 3 redwoods so far, but my experiences and the experiences of those around me are quite different. I am in Redwood Empire, so you can safely assume that just about everyone in the club has redwoods, lots of them. I find them to be incredible growers, and every time I prune, they backbud like mad! I was a little worried that perhaps I would get some dieback from the last trim, but it instead pushed new growth all over the trunk, and all over each existing branch. I agree the branches don't thicken very quick, and after about 6 months I am just now noticing a need for a re-wire.
It looks like you have a fantastic shohin in the works Rob, and I wish you the best of luck. Cant wait to see how you will re-style this one! -=Brian=-
 
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