Winter is Almost Over

Its certainly been one of the coldest winters I have experienced since I stated out in this hobby but thankfully its almost at an end. For the past few days we’ve had some warmth in the sun during the day although its still below freezing at night. This has meant that I have been able to spend a couple of full days working on my trees; this is the first time I’ve been able to do this for almost 4 months.

This is how the garden looked this morning in glorious sunshine.

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I used the time to wire my larches and prepare them for the new season. The first one has grown very well in the 2 years that have passed since it was first styled. This is how it looks at the moment.

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This is how it looked after the first styling in 2016.

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The next 2 were given their first styling today. The first one has a contorted trunk. I wired the trunk last year and its now holding its shape without wire. This is how it looked before todays work.

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and this is how it looks at the moment. It will be re-potted in a week or twos time.

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I have never been entirely happy with this next tree and felt that I had to take dramatic action to improve this one. This is how it looked before todays work.

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I decided to jin the top of the tree and continue its development using only the lowest branch.

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Here’s a few more that have had my attention in the past few days

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Juniper Squamata First Styling

Today I carried out the first styling of a Juniper Squamata, which was dug from my garden 3 years ago

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The next 2 photographs are a reminder of how it looked immediately after it was removed from the ground

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This is how it looked after the removal of some branches and a re-pot in 2016

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This is how it looked at the start of todays work, the top has filled out well in the past year. I have decided that this side will be the future front of the tree. As I looked at this image, I felt that the top of the tree was too straight and there was more foliage at the top of the trunk than I needed to complete the image I was aiming for.

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This is how it looked when the work was completed. The foliage was removed from the top of the trunk and the branches were jinned. Now, the relative proportion of the remaining foliage seems more balanced with the long thin trunk. I was also able to introduce more movement at the top of the trunk with a combination of coiled wire and guy wires

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The next stages in this trees development  will be to correct the planting angle at the next re-pot; develop the foliage pads and introduce a long shari which extends the length of the trunk.

Shohin Yew First Styling

This is a shohin taxus cuspidata that was imported from Japan 4 years ago, which I acquired about 3 years ago. It has taken all of this time to acclimatise the tree, to re-pot it into a medium which is appropriate for our weather and to get it growing with sufficient vigour to continue its development.

This is how it looked before any work was carried out.

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After the creation of a jin, some shari and an initial pruning.

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After a little more pruning and the addition of some wire to open up the branches

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And from the other side before

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During the work

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And after

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I think this little tree has great potential and I look forward to its continued development in the future.