The Short Straw

Phil and Stephen were at my place today and one of our tasks was to pick out our trees from last  years collected Larches. Yet again I got the short straw and last pick!

Ah well, made for an interesting session watching what other people pick as the best tree.

Stephen as usual drank all my coffee 😉

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Phil was trying to count how many trees were on the benches and ran out of fingers 🙂

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We also photographed a few trees, more on this in future posts.

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This was the back garden as we started out and before the camera went away in the thunderstorm. Four trees each.

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Working between workshops

Nebari Bonsai

Watching these Kathy Shaner demos provides a good reminder to work on rough stock to prepare it for styling later. 40 minutes well-spent:


It motivated me to take another look at this shimpaku stock that’s been allowed to grow mostly unchecked for the last couple years waiting for just the right opportunity. It has several good alternatives, and I’m not ready to exclude any of them yet…but several branches are unnecessary from any perspective. Best to get them out of the way now, and push that growth back closer to the trunk, and let it “puff up” again, as Kathy put it.
Several potential fronts:

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Before:

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Reduce branches fom 3 to 2:

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Continuing this throughout the tree leaves all the design options on the table, spreads out the branch reduction over time, allows more light into the tree, and improves density in close to the trunk/main branches. Not much difference…

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