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Sunday, March 15, 2009

Collected Vine Maple

I collected this tree a few years ago in the Cascades right before winter. It has since responded well. Many looked right past this ancient tree as it sat on my benches. I guess the trunk was to straight and all the branches were growing straight up or perhaps they didn't see what I was hoping to achieve.

In the wild this tree was growing a very steep hillside and was actually a full cascade. I had to plant it upright to save space and to make sure I had the roots buried in soil. Plus I always saw this tree in it..... even as we dug it off the side of the mt.

This tree has some very cool features to make it a good bonsai. The trunk is very rugged and has many "muscles" throughout, the leaves in fall turn into fire and puts on a wonderful display, the base is huge! Most is buriedi n this grow pot, but the base is a monster, about the diameter of a basketball and very barked up for a maple. I recently read on a forum that native maples can't make good bonsai, leaves are to large and they aren't any good......Wow, glad I am not that lame!
Before any work.....
Front- This is a big tree......
I had an image in my head as to what I wanted to do and what I saw in this tree. It was very fun to work on this tree.
Some progress photos along my journey.
Look at how old this little shoot is....Those are less than 2 inches and have 10+ rings per shoot. Every branch is that way, the longer ones have 40+ rings in 6 inches! This is a gnarly old maple.

Gotta bend this big thick branch...

All business~ Got my Hackin' at the Hilton Bonsai apron, iPod and cold ice-t..... :)
Adding wire while staning on a ladder!
Getting closer..
Apex detail

Fall Color
Finished back
Finished Front
Please view video for 3D images. If for some reason the blooger player doesn't work for you it can also be found on youtube...
For some reason the video is a bit elongated and kinda adds a little distortion to the tree.

This was by far the funnest time I had working on a tree. I think it was because there was such a transformation. I wired every single little shoot, branch and twig, wow that was a ton of wire! More wire then I have used on any tree before, even my big RMJ. Please keep in mind this is the 1st styling, it can only get better from here~ a nice pot, ramafication...the sky is the limit for this very old, rugged and natural looking vine maple. Thanks for looking.


Garrett said...

Great looking twinerati Jason. One question, how good do you think the chances are of that second trunk backbudding? I'm not familiar with native maples but I'd like to try my hand at one sometime soon.

Jason said...

Hi Garrett,

This tree is a single trunked tree, the 2nd trunk is dead and only there right now because it is an anchor for guy wire. However it is back budding down low right now, but those will never be part of the design.
Vine maple is the only species of Palmata that is native outside of Asia, and it only grows in the NW. I love this species.....
Thanks for your commet.