Having grown oak as bonsai a first question that comes to my mind is this a red or white oak?
English oak is a white and is hearty in NH, so I would expect it hearty in MI.
If your cork oak is a red I'd be looking at a bear oak (quercus ilicifolia).
I hope you are a teen ager if its a red-oak you wanna develop. Your gonna have a long white beard before you style it much.
My english oak was only been in field for ten years and has been in training in a pot for five. It'll be pretty good in another five.
I shovel pruned all my reds when my program closed down in 2010. I am sixty years old and I was never going to get them ready for pots, in my lifetime...
Think like a tree
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