Too much trunk

TheSteve

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JasonG and I were styling trees yesterday when I pulled this pinus contorta out as a challenge. This tree was about six feet tall and terrible a few years ago. it became a challenge in bending that grew old and boring. So now with a 48" horizontal reach and "loch ness monster curves" what would you do with it?
 

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Mojosan

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Would it be possible to cut it back to get breaks lower in? Horizontal literati just don't look good to me.

just my .02
 

Dav4

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I would try to bring the apex back toward/over the trunk. Maybe tipping the pot to the left a bit would give the trunk more height and movement.

dave
 

JasonG

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Please keep in mind, the picture Steve has posted was before we did anything to it. This is an exercise to see what others would do to this wonderful piece of crap, haha! As it sits in the picture it has no front to back movement, it is very flat and generic. When I saw this I knew it could be way better then what it is in the picture and knew immediatly what needed to be done. But at the end of the day it is still just a mediocre tree, nothing earth shattering.

So before Steve posts after pictures, which will have 2 possible fronts, are there any other opinions, thoughts on this tree? Is it ok material or bad material?? Does it have a future?

Just trying to start a discussion on bonsai and possible paths to take.

Thanks, Jason
 

darrellw

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Interesting tree, and one that is a bit of a challenge just in 2D.

Working with the this front (since I don't know what the other side looks like), I would stand it up almost 90 degrees (rotate to the left). Then do some cuts inside the bends you already have (red arrows), to get them a bit more angular, then get some front to back bends going, maybe going back and forth over a 2 x 4 or something. I wouldn't touch the top after all of that, but once the trunk recovers then remove about 1/3 of the area with foliage (green line), and make a tight, small crown.
 

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TheSteve

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192 views 6 replies. I thought more people would give it a shot. As stated there is no lateral movement so the single sided pic shows it all. I'll post the first styling tomorrow. Maybe somebody will think of something else.
 

king kong

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My pre gentle opinion was that it looks a little dog's head silhouette branding ironish to me so that's why I have refrained from commenting. If I had a dog that grew a tale shaped like that I would shot it. Now the new 'me' says it's a wonderful tree with great potential. Keep up the good work!
 
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TheSteve

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So here is what we came up with for its first styling: two possible fronts although the second may need turned a bit.
 

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onlyrey

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I am lazy, so, I just wanted to see the after-photo before making a comment :). Great improvement; the before picture is extremely unattractive and the after-photo presents a dramatic improvement. I like the second front better. How long will you have to leave the contraptions on the tree before it takes form?
 

TheSteve

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My experience is that they take shape pretty fast. I'll leave it for the year but could get away with taking it off in the fall.
 

JasonG

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I am lazy, so, I just wanted to see the after-photo before making a comment :). Great improvement; the before picture is extremely unattractive and the after-photo presents a dramatic improvement. I like the second front better. How long will you have to leave the contraptions on the tree before it takes form?

hI onlyrey,

Thanks for the good words! If Steve feeds this tree like crazy this year it should only take a year for most if to take shape. Pine puts on its "wood" in the fall and winter so it will be there atleast through next winter.
The tunk made a much more dramatic statement now that we tweaked it a bit. Before the tree was very linear and not heading for bonsai but heading for landscape humor! Now it is much more compact, very dynamic and could possibly be a bonsai in the future. In person the foliage looks much better, and has structure....kinda hard to tell from this picture. This tree has a ways to go though and it was fun to do what we did to it.

Thanks, Jason
 

TheSteve

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it was fun to do what we did to it.

Styling with Jason is an adventure since he is a)not afraid to attempt anything in the name of bonsai hence the "contraption" of a tree b)has many bitchin tools to facillitate the "contraptionalization" (new word) of the tree. Anybody within driving distance needs to hook up with this guy.
 

RyanFrye

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What a transformation. Thanks for sharing.
 

head_cutter

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Hmmmm...someone has a design eye and some talent as well, looks interesting as hell to me. Of course, I always favor some drama in the right trees.

Something else I would try (but only on 'your' tree-jk) :

pad the bends with innertube rubber-so there are no marks-do a wire wrap (like a tubing bending tool) then use a Spanish windless set-up to pull more bend in over time and make the bends more angular, sort of what you're doing now but with a little more 'heft' in the bending process.

Bob
 

BONSAI GARAGE

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As if you didnt already have enough wood to work with, you had to add an 8" piece of pine to the pine. LOL;) I've seen pines growing in the woods that have been tied into a knot. Somewhere close to Harrisburg PA. Maybe a knot is in order.
 

Smoke

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I like all the guy wires and fulcrums this tree has. Just wondering is this now considered a crossbow?
 

JasonG

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I like all the guy wires and fulcrums this tree has. Just wondering is this now considered a crossbow?

LOL!! Kinda like a crossbow/spring....don't get to close to it cause if it goes it will take a limb with it:eek: haha
 

TheSteve

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I just hope it sets soon or repotting might be the death of me. It was alot of fun to do and quite a learning experience. It's amazing what a couple of guys can come up with when armed with a couple of beers and a worthless tree.
 

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