Developing a trident maple – before and after

3 months ago Nebby 0

Source: Bonsai Tonight Blog.

Emphasis is often placed on how much we can remove from our trees. Today, I’ll flip that around to emphasize the importance of generating new foliage.

Here’s a trident maple after reducing the trunk.

Trident maple – June 2017

The idea is to encourage new shoots that in time will form the upper part of the trunk. Today these branches are quite thin.

Thin branches near wound left after shortening the trunk

Just a month later, we can see an abundance of new shoots. I’ll let these grow for a while and add some curves once they thicken a bit. After that, I’ll let them run some more until the transition of taper from the base of the trunk through the apex looks natural.

Trident maple, one month after cutback

As you can see, the shoots near the cut have extended quite a bit.

New shoots on the upper part of the tree

I’ll check the tree in another month to see if it’s time to wire.

Had I not repotted the tree this past winter, it wouldn’t have responded so well as it was previously growing in nursery mix. I’ll say more about the repotting Friday.

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