New Elm advice

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New Elm advice

Post  Thomo on Thu Feb 26, 2009 11:47 am

Hi All,

I have acquired this elm and I am after some comments and advice about it. Good and bad points. Next step ideas. My initial thought is to prune basically all the branches back to the point they start from and grow them all out again.


Front


Front closeup


Left


Right


Nebari


Last edited by Thomo on Sat Feb 28, 2009 5:03 am; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : labelled pics)

Thomo
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Re: New Elm advice

Post  JimLewis on Thu Feb 26, 2009 1:35 pm

I think you have the right idea. I can't see any way to make that crotch look better. I think I would even cut it lower down to give you a "bigger" trunk in the finished tree.

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Jim Lewis - lewisjk@windstream.net - Western NC - People, when Columbus discovered this country, it was plumb full of nuts and berries. And I'm right here to tell you the berries are just about all gone. Uncle Dave Macon, old-time country musician

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Re: New Elm advice

Post  frk_leal on Thu Feb 26, 2009 5:40 pm

Whell Thomo, first of all, what's your idea for this elm's style? A Hokidachi?
If it is, i agree with our friend Jim. You should prune it lower, to give the impression of a thiker trunk.
I suggest you to prune it in a V like cutting, it will help the healing of the scar and also in the distribution of the new sprouts, specially in elm species.

The rest of the cut-outs you can use to make stakes, if planted on the ground, soon enough you'll have lots of good material. I belive that there's no need to it, but if you're afraid of loosing the cut-outs, there's always the possibility of an air layering.

By the way, good choice, very nice nebari...

ps. I apologize for my english, it's been a wile since i don't use for writing....

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Just an Idea on Style

Post  jamesransom on Thu Feb 26, 2009 7:11 pm

What i can see is the potential for a good semi mature elm image. if you take the heavy back branch off totally and use the other side as the front giving the others a more styled cut back, you would be able to create a good taper to the trunk then grow the new branches from that. So on the second picture the right would come off and the left is the new front and that pic shows the right side. If the new branches were to be trained more upward like a wine glass shape it would match the younger trunk look. You would have only one larger cut that would be hidden from the front.

Just a idea

James

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My thoughts

Post  Thomo on Sat Feb 28, 2009 6:47 am

Hi All, thanks for the input.

I think I would like to head towards a Hokidachi style. Maybe something similar to this is achievable. Another possibility is this less formal one from Walter Pall.

I have never made a V cut. Is this recomended practice? I have attached a pic below where I think I would make the cut. One thing I want to be sure of is the angle. Is the angle I have drawn about right? Is the aim to grow a new branch from the top of each side?

This tree doesn't have much room for its roots to grow in this pot. Would I be able to prune the roots 10% at the same time as doing the chop?

As it is the end of summer here, I don't think I will be doing anything for a few months, just before the buds open for spring.


V Cut

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Re: New Elm advice

Post  Thomo on Fri Mar 13, 2009 9:40 am

Can anyone confirm that the position and angle I have marked on the pic above is the correct way to make a V cut? What is the purpose of a V cut?

Thanks.

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Re: New Elm advice

Post  JimLewis on Fri Mar 13, 2009 12:21 pm

Essentially, the "V" cut does two things:

It tends to speed up the callusing over of the chop, and
It (hopefully) promotes budding of a branch or two up nearer the top of the "V's" so it doesn't like quite like all the new branches have sprouted out of the end of a stump.

That one MIGHT be a bit deep.

_________________
Jim Lewis - lewisjk@windstream.net - Western NC - People, when Columbus discovered this country, it was plumb full of nuts and berries. And I'm right here to tell you the berries are just about all gone. Uncle Dave Macon, old-time country musician

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Re: New Elm advice

Post  Thomo on Sat Mar 14, 2009 12:13 pm

Thanks Jim, I'll cut it a little shallower and keep my fingers crossed.

Cheers.

Thomo
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Re: New Elm advice

Post  Alan Walker on Sat Mar 14, 2009 9:21 pm

Thomo wrote:Can anyone confirm that the position and angle I have marked on the pic above is the correct way to make a V cut? What is the purpose of a V cut?
Thanks.
Check out John Naka's Bonsai Techniques I on pages 137-139 for a lucid description with clear line drawings of the technique.

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Re: New Elm advice

Post  Kev Bailey on Sat Mar 14, 2009 11:11 pm

I don't think it's too deep. Also it should be cut assymetrically. If it fails to bud at the top, you can always cut it back again. With Elms though you will often get far too much budding! I'll post images to illustrate this, if I can locate them!

One of the problems with digital cameras is that you get so many photos, you can't locate the ones you need.

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Re: New Elm advice

Post  Ami BAS on Mon Mar 16, 2009 9:14 pm

Kev Bailey wrote:

One of the problems with digital cameras is that you get so many photos, you can't locate the ones you need.

Kev,
It's all about filing and choosing:
1. If you use only few majore files and then, "drill down" each file with minor files, arranged by time/ events/ collegues/ tree-types etc.
2. when you save/ dounload pic's from the camera, you must choose only the good ones and, delete all the rest.

I find it usful when trying to recall...

Ami

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Re: New Elm advice

Post  Kev Bailey on Mon Mar 16, 2009 10:29 pm

Very useful advice and something I strive to do. I have Bonsai, Garden, Family, Work as some of my major file names. All subdivided into sections. The bonsai one has them all arranged in linnean classification with further subdivision for each trees record.

Unfortunately I'm not always able to be as organised as I would like. A lot end up staying in date ordered folders until I can find time to post-process raw files, crop, colour balance and classify.

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“It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent. It is the one that is the most adaptable to change.” - Charles Darwin.

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Update on Elm after chopping the trunk.

Post  Thomo on Tue Sep 15, 2009 1:48 pm

Well I finally got the courage to chop the trunk. It is the start of spring here so the timing should be right. After reviewing this thread, it seems I didn't cut it as deeply as I should have. It is deeper at the back, so hopefully the scar will be less visible.

Now I am just waiting for the budding. I check it more often than I should. Very Happy


Front

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Re: New Elm advice

Post  AlainK on Tue Sep 15, 2009 6:27 pm

Wow, that takes guts to do it, but it was certainly the best option.

Some tie a rubber band at the top so that the trunk doesn't swell too much where new shoots appear and doesn't lead to a reverse taper...

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Re: New Elm advice

Post  Harleyrider on Tue Sep 15, 2009 9:19 pm

You're a braver man than me, Thomo! If I ever get an Elm like that, I'll probably want to sit and hug it and stroke it lovingly for a few months! Laughing

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Re: New Elm advice

Post  Kev Bailey on Tue Sep 15, 2009 10:11 pm

Well done Thomo, though I agree that it would've been better to go a little deeper with the V cut. Elms are so forgiving, it can lead to a more natural look, eventually. Glad you cut assymetrically though. This should make a great little broon in three or four years.

Just be very selective in what you allow to grow and very attentive to regular pruning. They are VIGOROUS!

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“It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent. It is the one that is the most adaptable to change.” - Charles Darwin.

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Re: New Elm advice

Post  wabashene on Wed Sep 16, 2009 11:34 am

Good on ya Thomo!

You asked for advice, got it and acted on it.

If only others elsewhere did the same rather than arguing the toss. Evil or Very Mad

Early spring in Melbourne is the right time to do a major chop like this I'd suggest as well because you will get lots of vigorous new growth

Good luck with this one.

I have a big rough bark one that I did a straight acrosser on and should have done a "V" on

Rgds

TimR

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Re: New Elm advice

Post  Thomo on Wed Sep 16, 2009 12:22 pm

Thanks all for the encouragement, I am still nervous, even though I know that Elms back bud like nothing else!

Regarding the rubber around the top of the trunk: I have heard of this before, is it common practice? Would a piece of rubber from a bike tube about 2cm high held on with wire do the trick? I'm a little worried that it will leave the bark discoloured.

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Re: New Elm advice

Post  Tom on Wed Sep 16, 2009 2:30 pm

Does anyone have any thoughts on the cut paste? I'd expect an elm of the size to develop buds at the cut point - does the fact that it's covered in paste present a problem for this?

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Re: New Elm advice

Post  Guest on Wed Sep 16, 2009 4:18 pm

Elms are so vigourous, the new shoots will easily push through the cut paste. As Alan said, I would place some hosepipe around the outside of the cut area and wire it around tightly to stop any ugly swelling.

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Re: New Elm advice

Post  Treebeard on Wed Sep 16, 2009 10:04 pm

Tom, here's what you can expect the buds to do...

Wish I'd had the proper knowhow when I did this one years ago. I did it all wrong and it still burst forth with buds. I sold the tree on not long after this shot. Wish I'd kept it now, but there you go.

Chris.

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Re: New Elm advice

Post  Tom on Thu Sep 17, 2009 9:48 am

That really begs the question of whether the cut paste is worth using at all, if it's going to lift off so easily.
Still, I guess I'm reassured it won't do any harm.

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Another encouraging picture for you

Post  wabashene on Thu Sep 17, 2009 12:21 pm

The jury is out on cut paste imo.

I use vaseline and/or plasticine when I think I need it

This is usually only when I have split a branch away from the trunk to change the angle or something

This is my straight across elm , 3 months and 2.5 years after a major chop - a bit more re-assurance for Thomo.

thks

TimR

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Re: New Elm advice

Post  AlainK on Fri Sep 18, 2009 11:20 pm

Thanks Wabashene;

Very talking pictures.

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An update on the chopped elm

Post  Thomo on Sun Nov 15, 2009 10:45 am

Hi All,

After a nervous wait, I was wondering if it was going to bud up, it sprouted! And Boy did it sprout!

So now I am curious about how you think I should manage this growth? I have come up with a few options.

a) Do I just let them all grow until next year and then select?
b) Do I just let them all grow for a month or two and then select a few?
c) Do I thin them out now but still keep a good selection with the plan on making the final selection next spring?
d) Do I select the ones I want to grow now and don't let any others grow?

I would guess that I need to thin some of the new branches out and gradually over the summer cull a few more. I would expect that I don't need to tip prune this year as I need a lot of growth to heal that scar. I think I should position them where I think I need them to be. I will also wrap the rubber from a bike tube around the top of the trunk with some wire to hold it tight. I will continue to feed over the summer. Am I close?

Picture is below.



On a side note: That is kale in the background, in my vegie garden. If anyone knows how it should be cooked, let me know, because it tastes like grass to me!

Thomo
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Re: New Elm advice

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