Please help with some styling advice

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Please help with some styling advice

Post  Todd Ellis on Sat Jun 19, 2010 4:40 pm

This Chinese Elm, with very nice, colorful lacebark, est age 15 years or older, 34 inches tall (90 cm), base is ten inches (25cm), width approx 30 inches (75 cm) is very tall
I'm not sure where to go with it. The pot is a very old Chinese pot. The branches were being trained flat, perhaps the original owner was trying to grow platforms. It looks too static, so I wired down many secondary branches to see if I could make some sense of the lines of the tree. I'm "stuck" with some options: airlayer the top above the hollow (looks like a separate tree growing on the top; branches are too thick/ not enough taper). Then develop the tree with the bottom two branches with a new leader.

I also thought about a tall, slender, Chinese style, by cutting the two current bottom branches and using the top branches to form the "convincing" lines of the tree... I went out last evening to cut them after reaching a "what the heck".... had pruners in hand, untied wire ties...then my inner voice said STOP!!!

Anyone have any suggestions? All comments are welcome! Salut, Todd

Before:

After (tying down some branches):


Last edited by Todd Ellis on Sat Jun 19, 2010 4:41 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : typo)

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Re: Please help with some styling advice

Post  JimLewis on Sat Jun 19, 2010 11:00 pm

Well . . . . . . . . . . . .


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Re: Please help with some styling advice

Post  Todd Ellis on Sun Jun 20, 2010 1:01 am

JimLewis wrote:Well . . . . . . . . . . . .

Thanks Jim! Chop Chop! I just might do it!
Would you mind sharing your thoughts about the tree after the two lower branches are gone?


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dunno

Post  guy ward on Sun Jun 20, 2010 11:37 am

I reckon that bottom trunk curve needs lower branches--perhaps keep the bottom two and use one as the new leader--aerial layer above the two--perhaps or perhaps not Rolling Eyes

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Re: Please help with some styling advice

Post  JimLewis on Sun Jun 20, 2010 1:04 pm

Would you mind sharing your thoughts about the tree after the two lower branches are gone?

Next repot, I'd spend some time on the base. On the left-hand side it looks as if there is a nice root curving in front of the base. Maybe that could be wired more toward the left, to give the image of stability to the tree.

Perhaps a slight change in planting angle -- more o the left -- and/or some wire at the very top to move it to the left, while pruning back some of he branching up there to move the overall weight of the top in that direction.

I like the lower 2/3 of the trunk (I like the whole tree!) and don't think I'd try to shorten it at all. But many people disagree with me of late.

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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: Please help with some styling advice

Post  Tom on Sun Jun 20, 2010 3:20 pm

For me, the fat swelling around the shari detracts from the potential for a tall, slender tree. However, I could see it as the central feature of a shorter tree, starting around ground level on the trunk.

In your place I think I would try the air-layer option, making the cut just below the bottom of the shari.

I would then use the bottom portion for something like this:



There are probably better options, but those are my thoughts if they are any use.

Tom

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Re: Please help with some styling advice

Post  NeilDellinger on Sun Jun 20, 2010 4:22 pm

Todd,

Take a deep breath....chop low, then regrow as a show in the virt or as a fat little shohin (my first choice of options).

Good luck.
Neil

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Re: Please help with some styling advice

Post  AlainK on Sun Jun 20, 2010 5:36 pm

Tom wrote:For me, the fat swelling around the shari detracts from the potential for a tall, slender tree. However, I could see it as the central feature of a shorter tree, starting around ground level on the trunk.

In your place I think I would try the air-layer option, making the cut just below the bottom of the shari.

I would then use the bottom portion for something like this:

There are probably better options, but those are my thoughts if they are any use.

Tom

That's exactly what I had in mind ! Smile

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Re: Please help with some styling advice

Post  Todd Ellis on Mon Jun 21, 2010 3:18 am

JimLewis wrote:
Would you mind sharing your thoughts about the tree after the two lower branches are gone?

Next repot, I'd spend some time on the base. On the left-hand side it looks as if there is a nice root curving in front of the base. Maybe that could be wired more toward the left, to give the image of stability to the tree.

Perhaps a slight change in planting angle -- more o the left -- and/or some wire at the very top to move it to the left, while pruning back some of he branching up there to move the overall weight of the top in that direction.

I like the lower 2/3 of the trunk (I like the whole tree!) and don't think I'd try to shorten it at all. But many people disagree with me of late.

I don't know about you, but one of the hardest things for me in life is "...to make a decision!" So, with that said, I tied a wooden brace to the left side of the trunk, tied the brace in two places along the whole length of the trunk, to put a curve in the straight top; the top curves to the left and then back again ("S"). I liked the new look of the tree and then CUT off the lowest left branch. WHAT AN IMPROVEMENT! (I'll try to take a picture sometime this week). I'm sure the other low branch will come off but I want to play with it for a while. The branch I removed was ten years old, according to the rings (if I counted right...) Going with a shorter tree has merit, but I'm a "sucker" for the tall and lean- Penjing!
If the buldge from the hollow distracts from the line, I figure I can carve some of it to enhance taper. Smile Salut, Todd

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Re: Please help with some styling advice

Post  JimLewis on Mon Jun 21, 2010 1:56 pm

I hope you put rooting hormone on the cut-off branch and stuck it into some dirt.

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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: Please help with some styling advice

Post  Todd Ellis on Mon Jun 21, 2010 6:54 pm

JimLewis wrote:I hope you put rooting hormone on the cut-off branch and stuck it into some dirt.

I stuck the secondary branches in hormone and dirt; they had character. The main branch was flat as a pancake (two dimendional) and not very interesting. Very Happy

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