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Topical times – Stuart’s Spruce

A regular update on the life and times of John Hanby’s Newstead Bonsai Centre……..

Stuart’s Spruce

It was the last workshop before Christmas so it seemed highly appropriate that Stuart should arrive with a spruce he had recently purchased from us. He wanted some advice on it’s initial styling. The tree is older than it’s small size suggests and has a dense canopy with many branches.



We started by making a selection and removing branches which we did not consider to be of use in giving the tree it’s first styling as a bonsai. The first major problem soon became obvious. The trunk divides into two in the shape of an ugly catapult. It really has to be one or the other…not both.



We decided to go with the trunk to the right because this line creates much better taper and it does contain a good selection of side branches. The remaining trunk is thinned out ready  for wiring. At this stage the large lower branch to the left is retained but I feel it will prove to be too heavy.



The tree after it’s first wiring and styling. A pleasing image has emerged with excellent taper and a good ramification of fine branches.

I understand that the lower left heavy branch has already been removed in accordance with our earlier discussions. Sometimes it’s good to live with things first to help ensure you make the correct decision. The tree will be potted into a bonsai/training pot in spring and allowed to grow freely this summer to help it recover from the styling/repotting work.