littletree
Newly Registered
Posts: 6
Joined: Thu May 25, 2006 8:15 pm

To cut or not to cut?

This seems like a very friendly and helpful forum for the apprehensive newcomer, so here goes..My son bought me a Carmona Fukien Tea, 16 years old. Didn't want it - he doesn't know that! - but I'll give it my best shot. Been reading all the excellent advice about the need for watering and will try to apply it. My tree is sickle-shaped with the trunk joining the 'blade' about 3" from the lower end. I'd like to shorten this end about 0.5" and keep it like that. As distinct to pinching out new growth can I actually cut the branch?

Thanks in anticipation,


Patrick F.

william
Full Member
Posts: 19
Joined: Wed Mar 08, 2006 11:32 am

A picture of your tree would help

Hi i posted the following on this site before , its a site i use to post pics in forums, you can follow the instructions below and post a picture of your tree for us all to see...................

First of all you need a digital picture of your tree stored upon your pc.
then
go to a web site called Exoload.com

This is a free file uploader,

Click on the browse button and this will allow you to select a file ( the image your trying to post) from your pc you may have to search around your pc to find the image your looking for.

once found simply select the image and it will appear in the browse box.

Then click on the upload button ( blue colour).

you will now see a number of coded links in boxes, Simply copy and paste the link from the box titled BB code to show image on forums and then paste onto a reply page on this forum.

then preview your reply and you should see an image of your tree.

Submit the reply complete with code and we will also see your image,
Just be careful to preview before you submit or you may have some embarrassing times ahead.

Oh and you can add text to your reply before you submit.

hope this is helpful

William

littletree
Newly Registered
Posts: 6
Joined: Thu May 25, 2006 8:15 pm

I tried to follow your instructions William but not sure if they have worked. Please accept my apologies if not,

Patrick


https://exoload.net/506/1148904275.jpg
Last edited by littletree on Tue May 30, 2006 8:04 pm, edited 4 times in total.

william
Full Member
Posts: 19
Joined: Wed Mar 08, 2006 11:32 am

ok now we just need some experienced tree people to look at your pic and post some relevant info............

Treemendous

William
Last edited by william on Tue May 30, 2006 9:19 pm, edited 1 time in total.

littletree
Newly Registered
Posts: 6
Joined: Thu May 25, 2006 8:15 pm

Thanks for all the help, William,

Patrick

Marie1uk
Full Member
Posts: 21
Joined: Fri Jun 02, 2006 7:31 pm

Scissor pruning of Fukien Tea is fine - make sure you use sharp pruning shears.

Here are a few tips on Bonsai pruning that you can use in future:

Your overall goal is to get the tree roughly triangular in shape with the apex having a slightly rounded appearance. The first branch should be roughly a third up the way of the tree. Branches should appear on the outside of bends not the inside. Branches nearer the base should be longer and have more leaves than those at the apex (this should lead to thick branches at the bottom, gradually thinning in diameter as you scan up the tree. Cut off all shoots that a) jut out directly at you from the trunk (eye pokers) b) all shoots that go directly up or down from branches c) bar branches (branches that are directly opposite each other).

Hope this helps.

Marie

littletree
Newly Registered
Posts: 6
Joined: Thu May 25, 2006 8:15 pm

That is indeed very helpful, the photo galleries in particular, thank you Marie. It strikes me that the ideal tree for a complete beginner should have a straight trunk and symmetrical branches so that the ideal shape can be more easily obtained. My tree will be more challenging I suspect!

Patrick

Marie1uk
Full Member
Posts: 21
Joined: Fri Jun 02, 2006 7:31 pm

No problems - these are my pruning suggestions if you are still a little wary about what to prune. PLEASE NOTE: these are only my suggestions and are meant to help you to constructively see how to go about making logical pruning decisions. You may have another vision for this plant and, if so, I will be glad to help. Below is a link to your bonsai image with my additions and labelling:

[img]https://s5.exoload.com/uploads/606/1149424751.jpg[/img]

I would try and thin out the tree near the apex (don't be scared of pruning out branches that cross one another or cause you to lose track of the shape of the tree), eg near the top of your photo there are two branches that could form the 'top' of the tree - one jutting out to the right (A1) and another continuing left and up (A2). As the eye is confused as to which direction to follow the tree's sinuous movement is lost somewhat.

I would suggest keeping A1 as the leader and either wiring down or pruning out A2 as this branch seems rather thick for a branch so high up on the tree.

The lowest branch B is a little too low for a first branch but removing it would cause the tree to look very bare near the base so leave it for the time being and keep an eye out for buds appearing near C or just below - any shoots near C on the outside of this bend should be retained and allowed to grow unchecked for a few years as the 'new' first branch. Don't be afraid to let it go 'wild' and overgrow the triangular silhouette we are eventually after as long as there is enough foliage for us to reduce it by pruning later.

Areas marked D are a little congested and the line of the trunk is lost in foliage - lightly prune these areas, maybe removing overlarge leaves or sub-branches close to the main trunk.

The dotted red line is your current shape - the blue thin line is a projection of what I see as a more balanced form but it's hard to be sure from the photo. Make sure you feed your bonsai after pruning and look out for back budding - rub out those that conflict with your overall plan and retain others that help to achieve a pleasing shape.

william
Full Member
Posts: 19
Joined: Wed Mar 08, 2006 11:32 am

What a fantastic response marie ! :D

Id like to ask you the same opinions on my efforts when i get round to posting my latest efforts.

Marie1uk
Full Member
Posts: 21
Joined: Fri Jun 02, 2006 7:31 pm

No problems - I will be glad to help. A good quality picture is a great help so I can offer constructive feedback.

littletree
Newly Registered
Posts: 6
Joined: Thu May 25, 2006 8:15 pm

Hello again Marie,

many thanks for your 'cutting' suggestions, I really appreciate them. Your generous offer to provide assistance/advice is noted and gratefully accepted as I'd like to avoid later having to say as Shakespeare did that I made "....the unkindest cut of all" and destroyed my little tree. May I ask therefore if it's safe to do the recommended amount of pruning in one step?

Best wishes,

Patrick

Marie1uk
Full Member
Posts: 21
Joined: Fri Jun 02, 2006 7:31 pm

The tree looks healthy and vigorous. I would say that the tree would be fine if thinned a little, especially near the apex. Keep it well fed and do not be afraid to prune as long as enough foliage is left on the tree for it to produce food to fuel back budding.

littletree
Newly Registered
Posts: 6
Joined: Thu May 25, 2006 8:15 pm

Thank you Marie

duplex
Newly Registered
Posts: 1
Joined: Wed Oct 25, 2006 5:54 pm
Location: Athens GA

I know this post is somewhat old and that may be why I cannot access the images. I'm would very much like to see the pruning suggestions that Marie1UK posted - I just got a Fukien Tea (as far as I can identify from the leaves) and am a complete beginner at bonsai.

Is there a way the images can be reposted?

thanks!

ynot
Greener Thumb
Posts: 1219
Joined: Tue Sep 19, 2006 12:49 pm
Location: USDA Z:5a Sunset Z. 41 IL

duplex wrote:I know this post is somewhat old and that may be why I cannot access the images. I'm would very much like to see the pruning suggestions that Marie1UK posted - I just got a Fukien Tea (as far as I can identify from the leaves) and am a complete beginner at bonsai.

Is there a way the images can be reposted?

thanks!
The images are not hosted here, So there is no way to retrieve them. What do you want to know about your Fukien?

I am not sure how you think they would apply to your tree as she was giving styling advice specific to that tree.

Not the species, The individual tree.

I might suggest you start a new thread to avoid confusion [And to help keep the topic focused on your tree.]

So put up a new post with pictures of your tree and we will see whats going on with it.
:D
ynot

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