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Today the work we did in the studio was major thinning and some basic wiring of the primary branches of a Quince. To me the flowers and the fruit are great on this species of tree, but no other trees bark is as cool or peels like a snake like this tree. I picked this quince up in February of 2013 from Garth Shepherd the current President of the GSBF. Gareth is also one of the founding members of the Santa Cruz Bonsai Kai and is a great source for finding bonsai material. It is always nice to have someone who has been collecting material for 20 plus years close to you.

I do not know if it’s just me but I have never seen a tree grow as fast as this quince? This is what this tree looked like in April when I first removed about 6 major branches and started the tree on its journey to change the trunk and branch structure. For fun stop by my group on Facebook

This tree was extremely healthy and I do not believe any work was done on this tree. It did have a lot of challenges though. Such as over sized larger branches toward the top of the tree, branches that crossed each other and also crossed in front of the tree. I removed these larger branches up top and that were too low in April and this is what it looked like then, I also added a little wire on some primary branches.


Here we are 3 months later and this tree has exploded again! The new growth is 12-15 inches long. What a great time to regain some balance to trees growth and begin adding a little movement to the new branches. The bottom branches on both sides’ have increase in size by at least 50% in three months. Since I am working on the trunk and branches I am controlling the top growth and cutting back to the first two to four leaves.


When I did not know better I would cut the tips of the branches hoping this would fatten the branches. This is what gardeners do, not someone in bonsai. I can still hear Boon saying “you don’t do that”! 

This branch was toward the top of the tree and to large with no taper. The branch was cut and the shoot growing up was wired down, this will add movement and taper.

The rest of the blog will be pictures of cleanup work and then the tree as it looks today. When I did the initial branch removal I cut pretty close to the nebari and the cambium was beginning to grow over the center deadwood. But the cambium was growing over and leaving a larger bump then desired so I cleaned up the cambium layer to allow a cleaner healing process and then I apply wound sealant.




 The after...tree in training

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Written by Ron Anderson — July 27, 2013