Sunday, May 23, 2010

Cutting back deciduous trees

Your bonsai book tells you to carefully pinch new growth on deciduous tree soon after it appears. This will result in short internodes and some time after this the tree will respond with a second weaker flush and thus it will improve ramification.This is very time consuming. One can spend a whole afternoon with a large maple. And it weakens the tree.
As so often i do exactly the opposite of what the books says. I let the trees grow freely for a few weeks. then I take a medium size hedge shear and cut off the new growth rather ruthlessly within a few minutes. I can handle about 20 to 30 trees in one day. The tree responds strongly with a second flush of lots of buds also back into old wood. Thus my trees are much healthier and the ramification will be very good - much better than with the book method. The trees fatten about five times more than with the book method. Anyway, I do this with ALL my deciduous trees since many years, also with the shohin trees. The quality of my trees must have something to do with my methods. There are folks who write 'Walter may be a great artist, but I doubt his horticultural wisdom'. well, maybe, but just look at my gallery. Do you think this has nothing to do with horticulture?

1 anw 2 Acer palmatum
2 and 3 Lonicera xylostemum
4 Fagus sylvatica