It is a month now since I brought this tree home from the nursery where I discovered it, (see earlier Phase 1 posting) and I have had a while to think about it and round up some help as well. Adrian one of the most experienced members of Taunton and Somerset Bonsai Club had kindly offered to come and give me the benefit of his bonsai years.
I had already tidied it up, removed the smaller dead wood and old needles which took a lot longer than I had expected.
First of all Ade burrowed around to see if there was any interesting root system just under the soil. To the left of the trunk (above) there were only very fine roots but just under the surface there was a very large root on the right directly beneath the heavy long branch.
Ade pointed out that that long branch competed with the trunk as to thickness and divided ones attention when looking at the tree as a whole. I had thought this myself but was rather nervous of removing such a major feature and such a large amount of my new acquisition.One could see how weak and limp the foliage at the end of the long branch was and in fact how damaged one of it’s minor branches was, so off it came.
This major surgery was soon followed by some more amputations though at times I think I was more nervous than the patient.
Where branches had been removed
I have left stubs to work on later and Jin
One branch was also wired up to give
some height to what was now left.
The tree will now be left for quite a while to recover from todays work and with some High Nitrogen fertiliser soon and a summer ahead I look forward to it’s progress this year.
We then took a couple of photos with a white board behind to make images where the structure of the tree rather than the drama of the day would be easier to see.
As we were now up to our ankles in off cuts and I was suffering from tree owners nervous exhaustion it was time to pop round to the pub only a hundred yards away, eat,drink,talk trees and then put the world to rights over bacon,cranberry and brie sandwichs and chips.
Getting back home Adrian advised and helped on some of my other trees and got his Dremell out to clean one up. All in all a very worth while few hours, thanks Ade.
My next task was to try and create computer visuals from the above photos which include some of the next phase of work to do.
And the amazing thing is that throughout this exercise I had been wondering what my dear Wife Sue would say as she had been looking out at the tree for a month now and I was preparing for comments such as ‘Bonsai Massacre’ and ‘What on Earth have you done?’
so when she said ‘That looks better you can see it’s going to be a bonsai now.’
Thank you Ade and thank you Sue
This Blog is very much intended as my own record of the progress of my trees throughout the year, should you find it interesting do keep an eye on this site and remember as today has proved one of the best ways to learn the art of bonsai is to join a club and benefit from the experience of others who have walked the path before you.