Large Chinese Elm 2006
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Author:  Andy Rutledge [ Sat Dec 31, 2005 5:46 pm ]
Post subject:  Large Chinese Elm 2006

Here's one of my larger Chinese elms. Just had my friend Howard take some development progress photos today for me and thought I'd share this one.
It is pretty much at the tipping point and needs to be reined in a bit. You can see that some of the terminals are too large and will be cut back a bit hard this year to be replaced by slimmer, more delicate ramification. It's about 2 years away from what I'm aiming at. Anyway, Hope you enjoy this one.
Kind regards,

Author:  Hector Johnson [ Sun Jan 01, 2006 8:56 am ]
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How tall is this tree, Andy? Looks to be about 45cm?
Great taper, good profile. I'm also glad I don't have to wire all of that fine stuff.

Author:  Andy Rutledge [ Sun Jan 01, 2006 10:56 am ]
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Thanks Hector. This one is 61cm tall. There was, indeed, lots of wiring to be done on this tree, but that is mostly over now. I don't mind wiring elms so much. Each has a time in its life when every single branch and shoot must be wired, but that is usually a singular event. From then on, wiring can be done occasionally as important shoots emerge and must be redirected.
At least elms don't leave a sticky sap on you when you wire them, as pines do. ;-)
Kind regards,

Author:  Hector Johnson [ Sun Jan 01, 2006 8:28 pm ]
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Sticky: Figs, Schinus, Azaleas
Spikes: Flacourtia, Bougainvillea, Pyracantha, Juniper
Smell: Cedar, Buxus, Juniper
Oh, how we suffer for our art!

Author:  Jon Chown [ Sat Apr 01, 2006 7:55 am ]
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Hi Andy. An excellent Elm with what I thought had good ramification.
I was wondering if you have trimmed it yet and if so could you please post a new photo so that we can see how far back you have trimmed.

Author:  Don Blackmond [ Sun Apr 02, 2006 12:14 am ]
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That is a great looking elm, with a remarkably well color coordiated pot. Excellent job!.

Author:  Walter Pall [ Sun Apr 02, 2006 1:01 am ]
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I have dared to repot it although I like the present container. It is just clearly too small for my taste.
The table is just there, it could be better, I know that.

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Author:  Will Heath [ Sun Apr 02, 2006 1:10 am ]
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What a nice match between pot and tree, one would almost assume that the pot was made for the tree. Remarkable combination.
Who is the potter Walter?

Author:  William N. Valavanis [ Sun Apr 02, 2006 7:59 am ]
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Basically I like this Elm bonsai. I do not like the original container because it is too small for my taste also the color is too pale and quiet.
When I select a container I try to use the following formula for standing style bonsai:
Tree height = container length and depth. For example: if the tree height is 12 inches a 10 x 2 inch container would be suitable, as would an 8 x 4 inch container.
I like the container size which Walter Pall selected, not the shape or color.
I generally try to select a container color which will CONTRAST with the main color of the bonsai, NOT to match colors. Since this Elm is displayed or photographed in winter, the main color is the beautiful color and pattern which is typical of true Chinese elm. The original color of the container is very similar to that of the bark, so it the container which Walter Pall selected. I selected an unglazed brown container which will contrast both with a winter and summer display of this Elm bonsai.
Oval containers are the easiest shape to use because of the lack of corners. Generally, I like oval containers, but for this tree, with the heavy and powerful trunk, I think a better shaped container could be utilized. I selected a modified rectangular container with a design on the lower body which presents both a formal, yet informal design. Also, I tend to like deeper rather than shallow containers because of winter hardniness and general growth. In this case I used a deeper container, yet with fancy cloud feet. I generally do not use such feet with strong bold containers like this, nor for group plantings because they raise the container of the table too much and present a light and airy feeling. But for this bonsai I think it suits the tree perfect, at least in my taste.
It is a good thing each bonsai artist differs in opinion, if not we would all be using identical containers and walk into an exhibition with bonsai full of deadwood in plain unglazed brown rectangular containers...

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Author:  William N. Valavanis [ Sun Apr 02, 2006 8:05 am ]
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By the way, I forgot something.
I think this Elm bonsai needs trimming. Fine delicate twigs are characteristic of Elm bonsai and this tree does not have them. Yes, it has loads of twigs, but if you look carefully, they have been allowed to grow too long.
Continued, dedicated, time-consuming trimming, which requires about ten to fifteen years is necessary to develop fine twigs.
Basically, the trunk is well developed, as are the main branches and design, only the twigs present an undeveloped stage of development, which can be easily created with more trimming.
Yes, I know Andy has a "regular" job and is busy, so is everyone. No execuses, the tree needs more trimming in my opinion. Keep up the good work Andy!

Author:  Carl Bergstrom [ Sun Apr 02, 2006 1:45 pm ]
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Great to see these virtual repottings! I agree with both Walter and Bill regarding the size of the pot. Personally, I do prefer Walter's oval choice, but it's very interesting to read Bill's thought process leading up to his choice (thank you!)
Best regards,

Author:  Shaukat Islam [ Sun Sep 10, 2006 12:58 pm ]
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An exceptionally good Chinese Elm bonsai that I have come across. The tree has great potential to achieve great heights! Walter's virtual is simply great. A good lesson on how to enhance a tree's beauty by changing the right color/textured pot.
Andy, you are being modest when you say that it will take another 2 years to attain what you are aiming at. You have already arrived...... and another 2 years will make this tree simply superb.
I particularly like the way the tree stands; so graceful and yet so natural with a well developed, nicely tapered trunkline. What more can you ask for? Would like to see more images of your trees.

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