This is John’s raw material Austrian Black Pine.
This is young nursery stock that has a long way to go before it will be ready for any real work. However, this doesn’t mean we just leave it as is. The centre of the tree is of no use in the future of this tree as a bonsai. It is too straight and is without branches for some distance. We looked at viable branches with some ramification at the bottom of the tree and removed all the branches that were not needed in the future. This tree will now be left to grow and will be pinched during the year to encourage more back budding and ramification.
I see a lot of material like this and in many cases it isn’t suitable for bonsai or at the very best, it’s a long way off being ready for work. However, that doesn’t mean that people new to bonsai like John can’t learn from working on this tree for a few years, seeing how it responds to pruning and pinching.