Trident maples, a chronical

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#82
Very nice thread Al. I have found that this type of chopping works well on small ficus too. It allows you to create very interesting trunks in short order.
 
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#83
Al, your thread has been very enligthening to me, as a "newbe" ,trying to discover the secrets to growing Bonsai. Seeing and reading about "what" and "how" it was done, provided a truely informative source for the advancement of my knowledge about Bonsai. I want to thank you for your efforts to share with the rest of us. :)
 

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#84
Al, your thread has been very enligthening to me, as a "newbe" ,trying to discover the secrets to growing Bonsai. Seeing and reading about "what" and "how" it was done, provided a truely informative source for the advancement of my knowledge about Bonsai. I want to thank you for your efforts to share with the rest of us. :)
You are quite welcome Hank. It was my pleasure.
 
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#85
Thanks, I wish I could get to the archives of BonsaiTALK myself. I have a lot of stuff there. This is the second time I have lost a buch of writing. Before bonsaiTALK I was a prolific poster at bonsaiPAGE. I had many thread there also. I was there almost four years till the twin towers went down 9-11. Next day... poof, no more bonsai PAGE. Matt Chroust, administrator at bonsaiTALK had just posted an animated wire winding around a stick. I thought it was cool. I went there and signed up. The first guy. A week later PAGE was gone and I found a new home there. I sent out emails to those that I had and we went on to make bonsaiTALK the largest on line community of it's time.

Now with bonsaiTALK gone I find that I have to reinvent the wheel all over again. The good news...the trees look so much better than they did 10 years ago.

Many might wonder why I don't have it on a computer. This is my fifth computer since I started on discussion forums. Many of them just crashed and I lost all that way too. Pictures can be retrieved but what I miss the most is the large formatt pictures that are usefull for magazines. For instance the pictures in this post are from three computers since 2003 when I started this project.

Can you believe some of the pictures are on floppy drives...go figure. Try finding a computer with a floppy drive slot!

Cheers, Al
Hi Al,
First of all this was a great read and some fantastic work.
Have you tried here:http://web.archive.org/web/*/http://bonsaitalk.com I know it would take a lot of searching but you might get lucky. You probably have already tried this site.
I hope that this will help.


A Friend in bonsai
John
 
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Smoke

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#86
Hi Al,
First of all this was a great read and some fantastic work.
Have you tried here:http://web.archive.org/web/*/http://bonsaitalk.com I know it would take a lot of searching but you might get lucky. You probably have already tried this site.
I hope that this will help.


A Friend in bonsai
John
No I had not seen this. It did send shivers up my spine just to see the page pop up on the moniter. Thanks for that. As far as pages all I get is redirects.

Thanks though, Al
 
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#87
Hey Smoke,

Any updates on these trees? This has been an amazing read and a lot of great material for developing trees.

Jeff
 

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#90
Now that the leaves have dropped, it is a good time for working on the structure of maples. This year (2011) work will continue on the top while next spring (2012) will be reserved for repotting and work to the bottom (roots).

Ramification was the order this past summer as I have not posted any followups in this series. It is very hard to see progress while a maple is in leaf since it covers all the important parts.

I will post the two from the main article for scrutiny and a few that are being worked over that were added this year as well as one I posted last year that has come along pretty well.

So far I like this side of this tree. I think it showcases the trunk well and looks smoother without all the carving. More carving will be done to the other side as well for a more hollowed look.
 

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#91
This maple too has come pretty far this summer building additional twigs on top of it's branching. This tree is 6 inches tall but that trunk is right at 4 inches across at the base. This view is of the view I find best so far. It is about 10 degrees to the left rotated. next year it will be repotted in this better position as well as being trimmed in the basement for a smaller pot.
 

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#92
Now this puppy is really a brute. The base is really something to behold. In fact it won't be visable till next year as part of it is still buried under soil rooting. The large root that was cut back has been scarred for shari and jin. It will be hollowed further as spring approaches. This tree will be hollowed completely leaving only a 3/8 shell of live wood.

I have decided to build this tree into a small twin trunk style tree. Something that maybe an owl might live in. The first photo shows the tree as I started this year, while the second shot shows the back of the dead wood roughed in to simulate a twin trunk as well as wireing this years whips into pleasing shapes. Growth on this was slow due to not getting it out into full sun longer. I bought a house trailor in June and camped a lot this year, so much of the grow out stock was under shade cloth while I was gone.

I still managed to kill three projects.
 

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#94
At the bonsai swapmeet yesterday, a man came that was selling trident maple field grown stock. I am kicking myself in the butt for not buying more than I did, but I know where he lives so I can always get more. I did buy two and I scoured over them picking out what I felt were the best two.

keep in mind these trees are field grown and the roots have not been worked on so these are a little rough. No rougher than what I started with on the originals and pruning these two back will be a walk in the park.

They were sold bare root, and so I had to deal with them right away. I felt it was prudent to do as much root work as possible now so I didn't waste any time waiting for a repot in two years. This is how the trees looked as sold.
 

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#95
When I got them home I was surprised to find that the trees had a remarkable flare under the soil. In one case the tree was two inches taller than I thought. I pruned the first one removing as much a two inces in length from large roots. Shortening roots that grew straight down and other wise reducing the whole root mass. This tree was very compact and I was able to reduce it to shohin size pot size in the first go. In 2012 when I repot again, I will be able to reduce it even further making it posssibe to place into a really small and appropriate shohin show pot.

All of the unnecessary branches were removed from the tree. If it emerged in a good spot I kept it. If it didn't I cut it off. This trunk will be treated differently that those I have been showing in the thread. These last trees have been styled in a classical moyogi Japanese style while this tree will be shaped like a maple. It will have a more tree like shape. I have some small trees I am working on to show that will be more understandable.
 

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#96
This tree had a good trunk, but a horrible tangle of roots. They have been growing in a planting mix with sand and the roots have just circled whilly nilly around themselves. After removing all the branches, the entire root mass was sawed thru with a 14" band saw reducing it by half.

The shape of this trunk will recieve the typical J. Moyogi style crown slightly modified.

Both trees were planted out in coarse planting mix and planted in 1 gallon terra cotta bulb pans. The part I am holding is the bottom of the actual plant. It is easy to see based on my hand that the trunk is well over 2 inches and almost an inch larger. The tree is about 5 inches tall right now and will be around 7 when done.
 

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#97
Earlier I spoke of tridents in this article looking rather Japanese in terms of design. I am moving away from that look when possible and have a new crop of shohin maples coming along with an entirely different look. More of the look of what one might see if driving by a maple growing along side the road.

This first tree shows what the first basic stages look like when starting the process. On this stump all the branches not needed are removed.This does not mean that we throw away all the rules, basic horticulture ideas must be kept like not having over lapping branches, and having some back branches for depth. also back branches should be seen from more frontal views, etc, etc.
 

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#98
Different tree but same idea and shape. In this tree, cleaned up tonight in the living room, I wired some branches for shape and will keep these for one more year to gain girth. next year they will be pruned (chopped) back hard to start the taper process before ramification.

What we want to do is get a good foundation of branches around the tree to make a good rounded canopy. It is important to have undulations in that canopy so retaining a few overly large branches near the top can be a good thing.
 

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#99
All the trees I am showing now for this part of the process were from cuttings three years ago. There are two coming up that were cuttings five years ago and are more ramified. I will get to those shortly.

Now a different tree, but still going for the informal look, still trying to look like a park type tree. This tree is just one year further in the ramification process. It is not in its tertiary phase and will continue for a few more years. keep in mind that taper is still very important as well as some movement. I don't want telephone poles, I want intersting shapes that look like trees.
 

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This tree again has one more year on the last one. It is now almost to the stage of a final pruning for shape and potting for show. The taper is good, the branches are proportionate and the internodes are about 1/8" apart. The leaves get no larger than your pinky finger.
 

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