Mario’s Satsuki

One of the trees I’m minding for Mario while he spends his days kite surfing in Dubai is this little Satsuki Azalea. For me the tree had a few issues to begin with, namely:

the apex being as wide as the bottom branches

 suffers from a floating apex

Missing a branch to the front which I feel is a little too open.

This was the tree back in June 2012

After discussing the tree with Peter Warren in October last year we adjusted a few of the upper branches with wire to try and stop that floating apex. However, it was the wrong time of year to hard prune the apex to try and narrow it. Therefore we could only do so much at that time. This was the tree in April of this year.

After flowering was finished in June I pruned the apex back quite hard in a few places to improve the overall shape. This is the tree now. Less of an appearance of a floating apex and a more overall triangular shape.


This adventurous shoot has appeared on the trunk at a point were I think it might benefit the tree if developed. I’ll let it grow and let Mario remove it if he disagrees 😉


This is one of the top branches that got a major pruning back to old wood. It took a few weeks but it is now starting to fill out nicely but in the right area.


Before and after side by side for comparison

                                                                                                                                                       . DSC_0038

8 comments on “Mario’s Satsuki

  1. It looks very healthy and happy there!

    I still try to figure it out where we are going with the overall design but as I said earlier , it is down to you my friend, you got my blessing 🙂
    I would probably lower that branch close to a apex on the left and maybe try to split the branches on the right of the apex to create another tier… But you’re the boss Ian!
    Well done!
    I also noticed that people didn’t appreciate my design which makes me think it was a good move to leave it in your capable hands!


  2. 🙂
    I thought so..
    My initial idea for this tree was to create only 3 flattish clouds which i hoped will look nice while in flowers.
    Your design in more natural – real tree-like (i suspect anyway) 😉 ) which may be much suitable for my beloved satsuki. this being said, i think any satsuki that’s styled in real tree image is being ruined while in flowers unless it is a really big tree.
    On the other hand 🙂 satsuki are in flower only for relatively short amount of time each year which proves your design to be more suitable than mine…
    It is a quite interesting thing to see what can be done, or rather what one can do to your tree while you’re away, lol, and what you may never be even tempted to do, or rather have no guts for, hahahahah


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