Shimpaku Styling 1

Here is another gem from Brent at Evergreen Gardenworks. His comments:

“Did I give you the provenance on this one? This is one of two Shimpaku in one gallon containers that I purchased from a local bonsai dealer (Roscoe Morris, now deceased) from Treehouse Nursery. One has been in a bonsai pot the whole time and is still quite small. This monster has been let to grow and would have been even bigger if I had repotted it more often. It has been in my care since the early 80’s , probably ’81 or ’82.”

I’m a big fan of provenance with bonsai, and a fan of Brent’s work in proliferating American bonsai stock. If any left-coasters have any insight on Mr. Morris or Treehouse Nursery, please let me know.

So, with more photos and fewer words, let’s look at this one.

As offered, still at the nursery, 10/11:

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Arrived in Birmingham, 12/11:

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Potted in a 24″ wide mica training pot:

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April ’12, exploring options for the best front:

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In September ’12. Fed heavily and allowed to grow freely all year, with a few unusable interior branches removed to allow sunlight to get in:

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In summer ’13, same side:

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Then, in mid-summer, I pruned out more of the interior growth, and reduced branches emerging in 3s down to one or two. The quantity removed is surprising when comparing it to the before/after shots, since it still looks full:

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I had been growing it this year so the other side would get more southern sun and started to see an interesting trunk line. I think it’s normal for westerners to want to appreciate a bonsai from the left to the right, and that’s the movement I defaulted to initially. It wasn’t until I decided to turn it around this year that this option started to crystallize:

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A virtual rendering of the plan:

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Next week, we get to work…

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