Any questions about booking a course or shopping online? Contact us:   07399 383106

Frank’s Trident maple stump

It has been quite a journey with this tree and I have been happy to be involved and helping Frank whenever the tree has been brought to a workshop. At long last we are beginning to arrive at our destination.

April 2010 – This Trident maple was going nowhere so Frank decided to air layer the three trunks off and this was done with great success.
October 2014 – The tree had been allowed to grow again and was trying to get back to where we started!
I was not prepared to let this happen so I had to take appropriate action. A first branch selection was made.
June 2016 – The tree was back for another pruning.
After pruning and at least it looks a bit more convincing with some leaves on.
April 2017 – The tree is just so strong and bounces back really well.
The repeated growth spurts enables us to select and start to develop new branches which will make up the structure of the tree.
July 2017 – Trident maples are one of the best to work with for bonsai because they are capable of more than one flush of growth each season.
Some low branches are allowed to continue to grow to increase their girth.
May 2018 – Notice how the tree is getting bushier as we have more and more shoots growing.
Once again a selection is made and only specific branches are allowed to continue growing.
May 2019 – The tree has been allowed to grow for longer too help it get over the repot into a smaller pot.
July 2021 – All the time we are keeping the tree healthy and vigorous promoting strong growth and extensive back budding.
At last you can start to see some density in the image and an outline of what the finished stocky shohin image will look like.
May 2022 – The tree is a picture of health!
After yet another pruning.
September 2022 – A second flush of growth but now the first signs of autumn are here.
A final pruning before the leaves start to fall.

Its taken a long time to get to where we are today with this tree but it now bares no resemblance to what we started with. The successful air layers at the beginning of the project were really a bonus. The tree is now on the verge of reaching its full potential as a small powerful bonsai with an impressive stout trunk complemented by a rounded mature canopy.

The scars from the air layers are callousing well but can now be hollowed out to enhance the image of a really old ancient tree.

All the time we maintained the trees strong health and vigour concentrating on selecting and growing branches. These were then allowed to thicken before we started looking at refinement and compacting the image.

This hobby never fails to deliver immense satisfaction when you are successful in creating something special out of nothing!