Fat little trident maple

Here is a project 11 years in the making. Truthfully, it’s probably a 5-6 year project, but I’ve learned a lot along the way, and hopefully my timelines shorten as I go on.
2002, received, and planted in the ground:

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Then in 2003, I did some root work and planted it in a shallow flat, and wired up a new leader. I have learned that this is not the best way to develop new trunk sections:

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2004-2005 in a wood box. It regained some strength after root work, and started growing well:

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Here it is in 2008, back in the ground:

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In 2010, the top half died back, so it was reduced to a stump:

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Fast-forward a few years of in-ground growing time…

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After cleaning up the pruning scars, adding fresh cuts to the callus, and scraping off the rough bark around the collars:

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This is on the path to becoming a powerful little shohin pig. If it continues to close the pruning scars this year, it might be time for a pot next spring.

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7 thoughts on “Fat little trident maple

  1. I guess the death of the top could be considered a happy accident. It looks about as big as one of those Al Keppler sumo tridents he’s been posting on his blog. How long do you think it will take to develop the branching, two or three years? I’m curious since tridents are so vigorous.

  2. Early in the progression you mentioned that your initial chop and wiring the leader may not have been the best decision. Could you expand on this? What would have done differently?

    • Wiring up a leader slows its growth, and in my experience, something else appears and overtakes whatever I’ve wired. Best to get movement at the chops vs. between the chops.

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