The center phases of pine growth – my favourite!


When you could have trunk to work with and the purpose is to enhance the branches, you’re working with a tree within the center phases of growth. For pines with massive trunks, this stage can final 5 to 10 years or extra, relying in your targets for the silhouette.

The 2 pines under had been grown by Chris and Lisa Kirk at Telperion Farms east of Salem, Oregon. My guess is that they’re near twenty years outdated, give or take.

I’d initially deliberate to make a big bonsai from the tree under however have since modified my thoughts and am now aiming to make a medium dimension bonsai. In time, I’ll cut back the trunk simply above the decrease cluster of foliage.

Black pine

Black pine

As a result of I need the branches that can type the brand new apex to develop quickly, I’ll keep away from decandling them this yr. (For a primer on methods to decandle black and crimson pines, see Decandling, an in-depth information.) The crimson tape helps me bear in mind which shoots to not lower.

After decandling the lower branches

After decandling the decrease branches

The subsequent step was to skinny the needles. I saved between three to 5 pairs per department.

After thinning the needles

After thinning the needles

To get a head begin on wiring, I used brief items of rebar to decrease the bottom branches on the proper aspect.

After wiring

After wiring – 22″

The method seemed related on the again of the tree. I decandled the entire branches aside from a row of shoots on the principle again department as I need it to develop longer.

After decandling

After decandling

After thinning needles and wiring

After thinning needles and wiring

I saved, however decandled, the higher branches as I need to protect as a lot sap circulation via the trunk as potential. I’ll look to scale back the trunk as soon as the brand new apex is greater, probably in a single to 2 years.

A barely bigger pine received the same remedy. As a result of the branches are already on the lengthy aspect, I shortened them after decandling. And since the tree is powerful, I decandled each new shoot (aside from the sacrifice department extending from the brand new apex) in an effort to step by step sluggish the tree down.

Before decandling

Earlier than decandling

After decandling and thinning needles

After decandling and thinning needles

After wiring

After wiring – 33″

As with the primary tree, I preserved the outdated sacrifice department in an effort to take care of good sap circulation on all sides of the trunk to protect as many roots as potential and enhance the zones the place I can graft new branches down the street.

I take pleasure in this work as a result of it requires creativity and requires cautious choices about what to chop and what to let develop. This may increasingly lead to timber that look humorous on the bench for just a few years, nevertheless it’s the quickest method I do know of to create interesting bonsai with attention-grabbing construction.

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