prosopis - help with design

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prosopis - help with design

Post  theBalance on Sun Nov 20, 2011 10:52 am

hi,
attached is an image of raw material - prosopis from a nursery. In training.
I would be happy to know what direction would you take him ( virtuals would be great Cool )
Please notice it has a very tiny leaves.
10x in advance for any help,
alon


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Re: prosopis - help with design

Post  JimLewis on Sun Nov 20, 2011 12:35 pm

Seems to me that it is a bit early for any meaningful style suggestions. Let it put out some branches in the spring and see where IT wants to go.

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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: prosopis - help with design

Post  Guest on Sun Nov 20, 2011 2:01 pm

Hi Alon.

I think Jim is right. but you can cut (slanted cut) the upper portion of the tree just above the top most branch to create a shorter tapered tree, and use the top branch as the new leader/ apex... then let the tree grow on its own in a huge container for a year or two before any detailed works were done again.

regards,
jun Smile

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Re: prosopis - help with design

Post  Robert Steven on Sun Nov 20, 2011 4:40 pm

At this stage..NO wiring please and DO NOT cut the tips...otherwise, you will never obtain thick branches....

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Re: prosopis - help with design

Post  theBalance on Mon Nov 21, 2011 12:02 pm

hi Guys,

first of all thanks for the time to give your opinion on this tree Very Happy
the three of you ( Jim, Jun & Robert ) are artists I look up to in all the years I am doing bonsai, so I feel honored to get a feedback from you

Robert - regarding your advice about not cutting the brunches - I totally accept but since in this time we have a very strong winds and the branches were very long I was afraid that they would break or will cause the new leader to break so I had to cut them Embarassed )

I do agree that it seems a bit early...BUT prosopis branches become very hard at a very early stage...
this is why I am trying to determine the future design of the tree NOW
I am not trying to establish all the branches position ( any how when the new leader will become thick I will remove the other branches because they will NOT be in a good proportion to the "trunk" )
just trying to determine the TRUNK line Exclamation

so in the mean time. about 1.5 years ago I cut the original trunk, and started a new leader from the place that the old trunk has no more taper & movement.

I would be extremly happy if you can ( inspite of the early stage ) to suggest the future trunk line
alon

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Re: prosopis - help with design

Post  Robert Steven on Mon Nov 21, 2011 12:43 pm

OH NO... !!! Once you cut it, it will never grow thick but get harder at the early stage as you said. You can do other efford to avoid of breaking, but you need to let it grow without touching the apical meristerm..if neccessary...a long the way to Palestina (I know you are in Israel..a bad joke, I know.. Suspect ).

As long as you let the main branch grow more vertical, there will be less water-shoots come out to compete, and if any new leaders, you can remove them.

Now is the stage of programming, not styling; however, you need to have your vision of design first; otherwise, it doesn't make any sense to grow branches while you don't know if you will need them or not.
What I want to say is, you need to know the rough design idea, then WHERE you will set the crown and foliage pads..then IT'S there you need to program the future growth to form the crown and foliage pads. By this way, you can focus on very few neccessary shoots, effecvtive, efficient and fast !

Last but not least, "tapering" trunk line is not always a must in bonsai design..do what the material tell you..talk to it..... Laughing

I'd love to know your vision... sunny


Last edited by Robert Steven on Mon Nov 21, 2011 12:47 pm; edited 2 times in total (Reason for editing : mistype)

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Re: prosopis - help with design

Post  Guest on Mon Nov 21, 2011 12:56 pm

Hi Alon,
This is what I can see from your tree, the trunk I just trace from your picture and cut (slant way) the upper portion just above the highest branch on the right.




regards,
jun Smile

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Re: prosopis - help with design

Post  theBalance on Mon Nov 21, 2011 1:30 pm

you guys are simply amazing - 10x for the prompt replies Shocked

Robert,

I looked again at the pic of the tree i've submitted and understood that i've confused you - in the pic the new leader looks like it is cut, but actually it is not !!! only the side shoots have been cut - so actually i am following your advice and I will NOT cut the leader !
also from your reply I understand that you insist that I will "talk" to the tree and understand what he wants to be...usually I succeed in talking to trees, in this case I didn't so far - but I will try harder to understand how the tree will combine with my vision Cool
your book ( vision of my soul ) which is one of my favourite bonsai books gives me a lot of inspiration ( I am looking at it at least 2-3 times a week Smile ) and it will help me in this

Jun,

10x so much for this beutifall virtual, it is a very GOOD option and I liked very much the combination of the tree and the pot !! I believe this design can be achieved in a relativly short time ( 3 years )...the chalenges I see in this option are mainly the HUGE scar that will remain from the cut of the trunk...the size of it will not let the tree look natural..and so if I choose this option I will need to hide it...and for me the tree will never be whole

because of the size of this scar, I am thinking of a much more chalenging thing, that will take many more years to complete...I am thinking of Chu bonsai ( around 60 cm hight - when today the stamp is only about 30 cm), and trying to find a design that the scar will not be hidden, maybe will be a focal point of the tree and will be a natural part of the tree "story" - that the "old" leader has died and a new leader has grown.
I would love to hear from your expirience if this is possible Question


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Re: prosopis - help with design

Post  Robert Steven on Mon Nov 21, 2011 1:44 pm

theBalance wrote:you guys are simply amazing - 10x for the prompt replies Shocked

Robert,

I looked again at the pic of the tree i've submitted and understood that i've confused you - in the pic the new leader looks like it is cut, but actually it is not !!! only the side shoots have been cut - so actually i am following your advice and I will NOT cut the leader !
also from your reply I understand that you insist that I will "talk" to the tree and understand what he wants to be...usually I succeed in talking to trees, in this case I didn't so far - but I will try harder to understand how the tree will combine with my vision Cool
your book ( vision of my soul ) which is one of my favourite bonsai books gives me a lot of inspiration ( I am looking at it at least 2-3 times a week Smile ) and it will help me in this

Jun,

10x so much for this beutifall virtual, it is a very GOOD option and I liked very much the combination of the tree and the pot !! I believe this design can be achieved in a relativly short time ( 3 years )...the chalenges I see in this option are mainly the HUGE scar that will remain from the cut of the trunk...the size of it will not let the tree look natural..and so if I choose this option I will need to hide it...and for me the tree will never be whole

because of the size of this scar, I am thinking of a much more chalenging thing, that will take many more years to complete...I am thinking of Chu bonsai ( around 60 cm hight - when today the stamp is only about 30 cm), and trying to find a design that the scar will not be hidden, maybe will be a focal point of the tree and will be a natural part of the tree "story" - that the "old" leader has died and a new leader has grown.
I would love to hear from your expirience if this is possible Question


Alon, I absolutely agree with your respond to Jun's suggestion. Seems you have read my second book "Mission of Transformation"..where I talk more about this subject especially fit to this material. Instead of making an ideal normal tree by camouflaging the defectives, I'd rather design a tree that has been going through a transformation process (this is more what my book's tittle for rather than sound like a detective novel... Laughing ) ...let the defectives talk !!


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Re: prosopis - help with design

Post  Guest on Mon Nov 21, 2011 1:48 pm

Your tree is still very young and raw. before all the branches thicken enough and got the right proportion, I think by the time, the wound wound heal perfectly.

Word of caution though, my idea for you tree is for visual reference only. and I am not so sure if the specie is prone to rotting. It will be always your call.



regards,
jun Smile

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Re: prosopis - help with design

Post  theBalance on Mon Nov 21, 2011 2:53 pm

jun,

some info on this specie ( from my expirience ) - NOT prone to rot Smile grows very rapid ( the leader is only 1 year old ) BUT it doesn't close scars good Crying or Very sad ( for example - my elms will close scars within a few month, and after a year you can't tell there was a cut )
this is why i am more concern about the scar...and will probably need to do some dead wood carving.
BTW you are correct - it is a young material ( only 8 years old ) but what I love about it is : the special texture of the trunk, the tiny leaves, the movment and taper on the buttom section


Robert,

I will combine :
on one hand : "think" like a tree - meaning - if my main trunk was cut, and this was the new leader : where would I set my branches so I can have optimal sun light and phisical balance ( so the branches won't break, and the roots won't pull from the ground )
and on the other hand : feel like an artist to achieve a "virtual" balance & tell a unique story

BTW - on january i'm going for a trip in new zealend and over there i'm gonna do lot of hiking, among other in very old forests ( with mostly beech trees ) and i'm sure it will help to give me more inspiration

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Re: prosopis - help with design

Post  Arno on Tue Nov 22, 2011 8:18 pm

Hi Alon

We have a tree here we call "Kiawe", prosopis pallida, I beleive, is this a similar species to your tree here? Ours have thorns, and small leaves that close at night
Im interested to find others who grow this variety, here the taproots are deep due to dry soil, the only way to collect is to try and ground layer some roots, and collect the next year.

Arno

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Re: prosopis - help with design

Post  theBalance on Wed Nov 23, 2011 1:22 pm

Hi Arno,

I am Not sure of the excat specie...all I know is that it is from the prosopis family
here is a more detailed image with the leaves & thorns...
what do you think ?


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Re: prosopis - help with design

Post  Arno on Wed Nov 23, 2011 6:12 pm

Its either the same or very close, we will have to trade tecniques Very Happy



These trees were introduced to hawaii and now are very invasive, so I can collect any I want to Laughing Did you collect this one yourself?

Arno

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Re: prosopis - help with design

Post  Robert Steven on Thu Nov 24, 2011 5:35 am

Alon, now it looks clearer to me. I'd suggest to grow the shoot from another point above to form the apex.



And here is my rough idea. I don't mind to show part of the carved deadwood...


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this is getting better and better !

Post  theBalance on Thu Nov 24, 2011 4:03 pm

Arno,

they do look close ( but notice that the bark is diffrent Smile ), and I really LIKE your tree - I think it has a GREAT potential, why don't you open a new thread and ask for the experts opinion on your tree design ?

Robert,
after enjoying so much from your first book ( vision of my soul ), last week i've oredered the second one ( mission of transformation ) - now waiting for him to arrive Very Happy
but for me to be able to discuss with you is SO GREAT !!! and I feel honred
when growing the new leader my intention was to create as much movement ( twords "informal" style) so the tree will be "interesting" and also trying to minimize the cut...but something didn't "work" for me :



but when I am trying to analyze your suggested virtual - what I see / feel is :
your suggestion is going for the simpliest solution in a "slant" style, and the results looks very artistic, and to my best understanding there is a "balance" between the apex and the massive right nebari. also your placement of the branches ( front / behind ) give the creation a 3d depth Cool
the other advantage I see in your virtual, is that I don't really need to wait for branches to be thicken for many years...just "put" an apex on top of the trunk and do some dead wood work.

can you please help me understand the following :
1. what is the netural phenoman that caused the tree to become your virtual ? in other words what is the tree story ?
2. in my eyes ( maybe i'm mistaking ) it seems that your virtual is only the begining of the transformation process ( when the tree is starting to grow a new juvenile apex ) - how would the tree look after the transformation process has finished ?
3. can you tell me what is not working in my virtual ( I just can't put my finger on it Embarassed )
4. for each tree there are so many posibilities, so many direction you can take the tree - how do you choose between them ? for example if I follow your "slant" direction :

alon

10x,

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Re: prosopis - help with design

Post  Robert Steven on Fri Nov 25, 2011 7:50 am

Well, let me start from your last two pictures.
This is a very common mindset, a textbook mindset to have the 1-2-3 branches with apical crown. There is nothing wrong with this “rules”, but it become a creativity boundary if we start to design every material with this mindset; especially when we are confronted with yamadori.

The above convention is only applied to an ideal tree grows in normal condition without too many morphological influences. Ideal branches formation, the lower the longer and the thicker, the proportion compare to the trunk size, the crown position etc..etc..

But in the case of your material, this is kind of yamadori, it is assumed used to be a big tree, but broken due to certain reason, and now it will grow through a transformation process to a new form, which might not be the same as its initial shape. The branches condition and formation is no more as an ideal tree before. Those new branches can be new branches as the way the tree grows to survive, and in this case, the proportional rule is not necessarily valid, and the crown shape and position can be varied depends on different reason.

Our job is to simulate the transformation process of the tree in nature, whatever the story, that’s your vision to tell with the design you create, logically through all elements.
There are many option, you can even create a very extreme design, the most important point is aesthetically beautiful and horticultural convincing.

Here is another option…and hope this answers to your questions.





Thank you for ordering my second book. I'd like to have your HONEST comment on this book. Thanks.



Last edited by Robert Steven on Fri Nov 25, 2011 8:49 am; edited 1 time in total

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Re: prosopis - help with design

Post  marcus watts on Fri Nov 25, 2011 8:17 am

Robert Steven wrote: I'd like to have your HONEST comment on this book. Thanks.

hi Robert - i think when i first bought the book i did not really grasp or fully understand the message it aims to get across. this left my initial impression as "what lovely tropical bonsai - what a shame they dont grow and live here", and in honesty the book sat on my shelf for a while. Then I revisited the book and now can see the important points it makes about the trees' natural appearance, and that it can be applied to any bonsai material, the exact species is not important to get benefit from the book.

now i have read and re-read the chapters, then taken time out to look at my trees to see where there are areas to try and improve. Now i like the fact the book doesnt just say 'this is how you do it' and instead it just suggests the way and lets you discover it yourself. It has taken a year or two but i think there is a lot more to learn from this book than it initially appears.

. I must confess to not owning the first book - does it complement the second, or was the second a natural progression from the first?. (and did i notice a little info in a post by jun about a 3rd book?)

thanks, Marcus

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Re: prosopis - help with design

Post  Robert Steven on Fri Nov 25, 2011 8:53 am

Now I can upload the above pictures...

Thanks Marcus. The first book is more on the aesthetic principles, so it will be easier to understand my second book after reading the first one. I wish to have kind of Trilogy with my thirst book " FAQ of Bonsai - The Path to Beyond ". (souns like another viction..? Laughing )

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Re: prosopis - help with design

Post  theBalance on Fri Nov 25, 2011 10:17 pm

robert,
I think I am now starting to grasp what you mean...but to be sure I need to ask you this :

if for example will take the pemphis from the book "vision of my soul" in page 54
in your mind - will this be the "final" form of this tree if it was in nature ( because it has no strengh to grow thick branches ) so it remain like this until his death ?
or in nature after additional 50 years the tree might look totaly diffrent, because each tiny branch will become thicker and longer until the tree will regain close to his original "proportions" and return to a state of 1-2-3 braqnches with some sort of crown

regarding the book, i'll be hapy to give a feedback ( HONEST ! ), but only in a few months after I will absorb the insights in it


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Re: prosopis - help with design

Post  Robert Steven on Sat Nov 26, 2011 2:38 am

Bonsai is a living art, a never ending art..just like a tree in nature; it will keep changing..can be better or worse in shape (in our beauty perception)...even another transformation proceess..another one..again and again..

So there will be no final design in bonsai unless it's dead. Our task is just to keep it beautiful in every stage and following closely the every change...

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