Chopping a Japanese Maple

Edymnion(7a)February 21, 2013

Saw a nice Japanese maple the other day while shopping that I thought I could give a try at making a bonsai out of. Thought it could help to get some outside opinions on my planned chop though.

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Japanese maples are a popular tree because of it graceful growing habit. ItâÂÂs no wonder why so many people are drawn to them. They are a hardy dwarf tree which has been used in many landscapes due to their beautiful color and texture. They stun the viewer with a wide array of leaf colors and shapes, not to mention colorful wood of the trunk and branches. Their ability to adapt to small containers make them a wonderful choice for bonsai.

Maples can be grown in any of the bonsai styles, but one of the best reasons for using Japanese maples in bonsai is their aggressive growth habit. Maples are nearly indestructible as long as you provide them with basic care.

    Bookmark   March 11, 2013 at 2:37AM
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Well thats good to hear, as my chop was fairly brutal.

I intend to shape the trunk a bit more to clean off those rough cuts once it starts leafing back out some. I don't particularly feel like putting all the effort into making it nice and smooth until I know its going to live.

I did save all of the interesting chunks I cut off though, prepped them, put them in rooting medium, maybe I'll get a few extras (maybe not, we'll see).

    Bookmark   March 11, 2013 at 2:16PM
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Notice if you get new growth at the chopped limb elbow. I read that some trees react nicely by leaving a little stub of the chopped limb. I don't know if that is the case with Japanese maples.

    Bookmark   March 13, 2013 at 3:54AM
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tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)

I'm late to the party,but the lowest branch in the first picture - the one with the diagonal slash through it, would have been my new leader. Given what you're left with now, it would have been useful to have left all the low branches on to help thicken the lower trunk and help with taper.


    Bookmark   March 13, 2013 at 6:14PM
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