I’ve had this one for almost 10 years now. The last couple years have resulted in a committed design direction.
After first major work in December 2018:
It was repotted in 2019, with significant root work, and allowed to grow freely for a year.
And after detail wiring during the COVID lockdown in April 2020:
And of course, it was all dressed up with nowhere to go…so I let it go again for the rest of the year.
Unwired and lightly pruned, deadwood scrubbed, and a fresh coat of diluted lime sulfur applied:
In February 2021, it was time to continue the work. Removing heavy areas of foliage, to establish some balance is first; by removing weak growth, crotch growth, strong runners, and downward facing growth.
Leaving an alternating shoot pattern, like this:
Then wire is applied. I try to start with heavier wire to establish a path, passing wires just behind a branch, like this:
Allowing the second wire to go along the blue line:
And repeating, working outward until all branches are wired.
Then they’re fanned out into pads:
Shots along the way:
Looking at the results so far, a few areas need to be addressed:
Specifically these areas:
I also tightened up several branches with some guy wires, and ended up here:
Next up, a new pot. Here are two that would work.
On the left is a soft-corners Yamaaki, a pot I really like and have struggled to use. On the right is an 8-sided antique Chinese replica by Keizan or Yozan…can’t remember. Anyway, it’s one I bought for this tree years ago, so let’s see if it fits, after 10 years of reducing the roots down through 3 different pots.
Yep. A few chopsticks were necessary to stabilize it in the pot.
New soil worked in, a coarse blend of lava, pumice, and akadama.
Watered in, and ready for the year. The pot is a bit wide…or substantial-looking for the sparse top. By mid summer, it should be nicely balanced, as the tree fills out and widens:
Nice night shot a few days later: