4 Year Old Bonsai

SPP123May 24, 2013

Hiya Everyone,
Just bought a 4 year old Juniper Bonsai, and am pretty excited to get started making it my own. Problem is, I have absolutely no idea how to do so. I've read blogs/forums/etc., but due to its age (and my naivety) I am concerned as to how much I can really alter its shape, without damaging the tree. For example, how big is too big to cut off branches, how many can I cut at once, can larger branches be shaped with wire, what is considered a large branch, etc.
I'm also in Toronto so am concerned about keeping it inside vs. outside as the temperatures can get pretty harsh in the winter (half of the year...) and don't want to shock it by taking it in an out. Any advice to what I can do right off the bat would be great!!
Thanks!

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ryan_tree(7aVA)

Hi!

All I want to comment on is that you should keep that tree outdoors year round, Junipers need the cold.

    Bookmark   May 24, 2013 at 11:05PM
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tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)

There is no substitute for an understanding of how plants work, and a sense of how to best work with their natural rhythms, instead of having their natural rhythms working against you. What you can/can't do, how much you can cut off, and how much stress you can safely subject a tree to depends on a number of factors. The trees species, its state of vitality and whether or not it's declining or building strength, the amount of genetic vigor the species is endowed with, where the tree is in its growth cycle, how long it's been since other work that might factor into what you intend to do has been completed .......

Work that might be taken in stride by a healthy tree might be fatal to a tree in steep decline. Some trees can be reduced from 6-10 ft tall to a 1" stump with no branches, others balk at having a significant % of its mass removed at one sitting.

How about posting a picture of your tree?

Al

    Bookmark   June 5, 2013 at 4:47PM
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