Pond Cypress Group - First Shaping

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Pond Cypress Group - First Shaping

Post  jgeanangel on Fri Jun 18, 2010 11:23 am

This past Spring I put this group together without working on the trees. Now that they have adjusted to their new home and are growing like gang busters, I thought it was time for their initial shaping/styling. I used the opportunity to create a video that describes the steps for working on Cypress. The video is 10 minutes and will hopefully be worth your viewing time.
Thanks,
John

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Re: Pond Cypress Group - First Shaping

Post  John Quinn on Fri Jun 18, 2010 9:19 pm

I did enjoy it, John...thanks for posting. What will you use for a fertilization regime? Will you set the pot in a water tray?

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Re: Pond Cypress Group - First Shaping

Post  steve05412 on Fri Jun 18, 2010 9:44 pm

Excellent vid , really enjoyed watching it , gave me a few ideas on how to make a start on mine....thanks for info....appreciated

cheers

steve

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Re: Pond Cypress Group - First Shaping

Post  jgeanangel on Fri Jun 18, 2010 11:17 pm

John Quinn wrote:I did enjoy it, John...thanks for posting. What will you use for a fertilization regime? Will you set the pot in a water tray?

Thanks John!! I do a couple of things when it come to fertilizing all my trees. I water directly from my Koi pond 3-5 times a week using a sump pump and a 100' garden hose (great for the trees and it also gives the fish a regular 10-15% water changes...I am fortunate to have very good well water that requires no treatment) I use a liquid fertilizer about 2-3 times a month mixed in a big barrel and applied with a watering can. Since this group has been potted since the Spring I will continue to fertilize normally.

As to the tray of water, I have tried all different ways and I think the best results come from having the tree placed in a very shallow tray of water. I think the key factor is the evaporation and the amount of water the tree uses must deplete the water reservoir on a nearly daily basis. I think if the water is too deep for too long the tree slows down and can almost go dormant.

John

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Re: Pond Cypress Group - First Shaping

Post  EdMerc on Sat Jun 19, 2010 12:40 am

Great post and eerily relevant for me. I have an older (relatively) bald cypress and about four younger ones just hanging around. Only the older one has received any training, but after about three years, it was time to admit that it cannot stand on its own as a bonsai.

For about about a month now I've been thinking about creating a forest/group planting out of these. Your video has made my choice clear.

Thanks again for sharing your work with everyone.

Ed

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Re: Pond Cypress Group - First Shaping

Post  Seth Ellwood on Sat Jun 19, 2010 3:52 am

Awesone vid John and I have learned somthing new to day thanks to you.

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Re: Pond Cypress Group - First Shaping

Post  Dave Murphy on Sat Jun 19, 2010 2:40 pm

Thanks John. I really enjoy all your videos/tutorials. I imagine alot of time and effort goes into each one. I look forward to the next styling of this group.

Dave

(I've lived in GA almost 1 year and I still dont have a cypress in my collection.... Suspect ....I think I will have to remedy that soon, thanks to you and Ken Wink )

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Re: Pond Cypress Group - First Shaping

Post  jgeanangel on Sat Jun 19, 2010 10:56 pm

Thanks for the replies gentlemen.

Dave...I think you should go for it:)...besides you have a great resource and one of the best in the bc business right in your neck of the woods!

Ed...I hope you have great time building your forest!!

I enjoy most all of this hobby but it is the creation process that can really put me in the zone:)

John

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Re: Pond Cypress Group - First Shaping

Post  bonsaistud on Wed Jun 23, 2010 8:32 am

G'day John...

What a wonderful demo you have given us...really enjoyed it.

I've never never paid much attention to the to the care and design of the "Pondies" and the "Baldies"...but have often admired the "finished" subjects. This leads to a couple of questions.

First, if I undertstand corrctly, you have described collection, trunk chops, root work, repotting into a bonsai container, trimming for shape and design, and second trunk chops, all within a period of less than 18 months. To me, this sounds like a bit much to subject a tree to. Greg Cloyd, Toronto Bonsai Society, makes the case for patience in training as follows: "...No more than one major insult should be contemplated per year per tree...". I first heard the mention of "one insult per year" from Walter Pall...can't find the reference to it. I can expand on Greg's quote if you would like. So, finally, John, is your description normal practice? Something that Cypress responds to in a positive way?

Second, you showed us how you change a branches direction without wiring...will that work with other species?

Enjoyed your video my friend...

Pat

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Re: Pond Cypress Group - First Shaping

Post  jgeanangel on Wed Jun 23, 2010 12:16 pm

Hey Pat, Thanks for the thoughtful comments and questions. I certainly tend to agree with the "1 insult per year" theory. I had not planned to shape this tree until next spring, but it was growing so vigorously I knew it would be ok this time...(in the end all I did to shape was prune branches that were less than pencil thick). The other factor that I think played into the health and vigor of these trees is that after they were collected they were not potted per se...they were settled into my bog garden. My bog is attached to my Koi pond...I designed it as a vegetative filter for the pond but it has turned into a cypress recovery area. The bog itself is basically just pea gravel through which the pond water circulates. The trees I place in the bog after they are collected recover amazingly fast and typically do so with great vigor. This Spring when I removed the trees from the bog to make this planting I was able to lift them without damaging roots at all. This made the transition into the container very easy for trees.

The other thing to remember is that Bald Cypress and Pond Cypress are extremely vigorously and can often be described as growing like weeds. :)

As to your question about the branch training, I have actually never tried it on anything but cypress so I do not have informed answer for you:(

Thanks again for the comments and questions.
John

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Re: Pond Cypress Group - First Shaping

Post  bonsaistud on Sat Jun 26, 2010 6:17 pm

G'Day John...Appreciate your response to my questions,,,

Your bog sounds very cool. If I had the space, since part of my repotting regime is a 30-60 minute soaking, I would try the bog...without the pond. Living in a manufactured home park as I do, all I have is a strip about 1-1/2 X 30 feet for a "display area".

What you are doing sounds like it's very well thought out and that it works well for your "pondies" and "bsldies". I imagine that your climate uch better than mine for your regimine.

Good luck, and keep us apprised of your progress...

Pat

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