Here we have before us, my friends, a shohin, banyan style, green island ficus
I got the tree from Mike Rogers. It was one of those experiments we bonsai growers do; he had cut the top off of a branch and stuck it in some dirt. The experiment was this: the top was only 2 inches long but about 4 inches wide; would it root?
It worked (obviously). I asked him how much and he quoted an ungodly amount (for a chunk of wood in a one gallon pot) and I said yes.
This was about 3-4 years ago.
A year and a half ago the Central Florida Bonsai Club had a photoshoot and I brought the tree in.
This was it then
The photo is by Paul Pikel.
Wow, ain’t it nice to have a professional pic once in a while?
When Mike saw it again he asked me how much he had charged me. I told him and he said he should have charged me double.
I’ve decided to change the pot and use a better quality one.
And it needs some wire I believe. Lots of wire.
It’s been pointed out that one should never defoliate a tree unless the tree is healthy. This tree is healthy. I’m doing it to increase ramification and to get smaller leaves. I am leaving the terminal buds intact though, I want some more length on these branches, but I’ll probably defoliate and trim again in June and then I’ll cut the branches back.
Here we are
The pot I’m using is actually wider but more delicate, so visually, it won’t make as much of an impact on the illusion of “bigness” we’re after even though it is bigger. It’s also darker in color, which causes it to recede a bit in the eye.
It’s a handmade pot by my friend Rob Addonizio of Taiko Earth. (www.taikoearth.com)
It’s from 2009
So, if you’re a faithful reader, you know the drill: comb out roots, repot, wire every branch, bend branches, take some Glamour Shots, and viola.
If this is your first look at my blog, you know the order at least.
I was running out of daylight so I didn’t get too many in between pics but….here it is:
Repotted, wired, but no branch placement yet.
Isn’t that beautiful? The texture and color are sublime. I love this pot. I might just marry it.
And I think the shape and size complement the tree well.
You might not think it does but, you see, it’s my tree.
And now the finished shots
Birds eye view:
And the pics are, your right, then my left. Or if you prefer, my right and your left. Or, the trees left and the trees right.
And now….defoliated, trimmed, repotted, wired and adjusted….
What’s the lesson in this tree? (aside from the few horticultural ones)
If you see a good tree that has potential, and you want it, buy it. They may not sell it tomorrow. I would have paid double for it.