An open window into the comings and goings of students and their trees attending our regular weekend and midweek bonsai classes under the ever watchful eyes of John Hanby.
Classroom Corner – Stan’s Juniper Styling
On a recent midweek class Stan brought a Juniper he had acquired at the beginning of the year. The tree had grown well during the summer producing a bushy foliage mass with excellent colour.
The tree had obviously been styled and worked in the past but Stan wanted some advice on how best to now take the tree forward and to another level.
The movement in this tree is from left to right and is driven by the substantial and somewhat classical low hanging branch. However, the lowest branch on the left is too strong and is pulling you in the wrong direction in conflict with the overall image of the tree.
They often say in bonsai when you have a problem cut it off……….so I did!!!
There was a strong branch growing away from the back of the tree which was also a distraction as you could see it from the front. The offending section was removed.
Some smaller branches were removed to allow more light and air into the canopy. The tree’s total foliage was then cleaned out and all the branches were subjected to a detailed wiring.
Once this work had been completed the tree was brought back to another midweek class so that all the branches could be positioned. The overall shape of the tree now works very well and it is much more compact and refined. Some loose edges will be wired or pruned back when the tree starts growing again. The hanging branch is also too heavy and will need to be lightened in due course.
This is a good mid-size bonsai with an excellent shari/live vein combination and a foliage canopy that can be refined even further during the next growing season.