Ficus - What a growing season can achieve

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Ficus - What a growing season can achieve

Postby jezz_39 » September 29th, 2014, 5:56 pm

This is a Fig I purchased last year, unsure of ID at this stage, the leaf shape and bark suggest possibly Tiger Bark variety but I will post more photos later in the year :lost:
The first photo is from December '13 after an initial cut back and wire. The trunk was already carved upon purchase, since then I opened up the hollow a bit more, added a few uros on old scars, and have treated with wood hardener. I will continue to treat it and hope for the best, some areas are starting to callous over nicely so hopefully it will hold up. Other areas, especially the front have died back a touch so I will just have to monitor it closely and touch it up at a later date.
The next 3 photos are today after defoliating and wiring. It has developed quite well over the last 10 months. I will be away working for the next 10 weeks so it can have its head until Christmas time, hopefully allowing it to grow strongly will encourage more callousing over the carving.
Still has a long way to go but the ramification process has begun and can only improve with time. I think I will re-assess the base next season, I believe I have 2 options. Cut back the long root on the left, or do a full ground layer. The right 'trunk' needs to thicken more and the first right branch needs to be cut back. And the pot is for training purposes only, when the time comes I will be on the lookout for a shallow glazed oval.

Any critiques or suggestions are welcome, don't hold back! :tu:
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Regards,
Jeremy
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Re: Ficus - What a growing season can achieve

Postby Andrew F » September 29th, 2014, 7:30 pm

What a growing season can achieve in a tropical environment. lol in all seriousness thats a nice fig mate, keep us updated.
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Re: Ficus - What a growing season can achieve

Postby trident76 » September 29th, 2014, 8:27 pm

Looks spooky! I like it!
After roughly 20 years of growing bonsai, I reckon I might just be starting to get the hang of it...
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Re: Ficus - What a growing season can achieve

Postby Laurie J » September 29th, 2014, 9:47 pm

Wow, I love it!
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Re: Ficus - What a growing season can achieve

Postby Bek » September 29th, 2014, 10:06 pm

Last edited by Bek on September 29th, 2014, 10:07 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Ficus - What a growing season can achieve

Postby Bek » September 29th, 2014, 10:06 pm

This is really great. I love fast results!
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Re: Ficus - What a growing season can achieve

Postby jezz_39 » January 7th, 2015, 10:41 am

Update photo in full leaf, after a haircut. I shortened the right branch to fit in with the silhouette. Over the next 12 months I can see I have to shorten the next branches up from the bottom, fully wire the tree again to create open spaces, and round out the apex.
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Jeremy
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Re: Ficus - What a growing season can achieve

Postby Boics » January 7th, 2015, 10:55 am

Looking really good Jeremy.
Looks stable, powerful and old to me.
Well done.
One of the fabulous things about growing bonsai is as you get old and decrepit your trees get old and beautiful
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Re: Ficus - What a growing season can achieve

Postby bonsai_beginner » October 6th, 2015, 4:35 pm

Looks fantastic!
I'm wondering, how did you create such great ramifications soo quickly?


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Re: Ficus - What a growing season can achieve

Postby Raymond » October 6th, 2015, 4:55 pm

[quote="bonsai_beginner"]Looks fantastic!
I'm wondering, how did you create such great ramifications soo quickly?


pinch the tips out. All growing season long.
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Re: Ficus - What a growing season can achieve

Postby bonsai_beginner » October 6th, 2015, 4:56 pm

Raymond wrote:
bonsai_beginner wrote:Looks fantastic!
I'm wondering, how did you create such great ramifications soo quickly?


pinch the tips out. All growing season long.


So pinching the new growth?


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Re: Ficus - What a growing season can achieve

Postby jezz_39 » October 6th, 2015, 5:06 pm

I don't pinch. I try to keep my trees healthy by letting them grow, then cutting back. I generally allow my figs to extend shoots to 6-10 leaves, at that stage the first few leaves have hardened off and I cut back to 2. This particular tree has a habit of sending out shoots with long internodes, in this case I cut back to the first leaf. It will generally bud back further once the wood lignifies and you can cut back again. This continual grow and cut back sequence adds movement, taper and division in branches. Same process for building trunks.
Depending on growth I will also do a defoliation during one of the routine cut backs in mid/late summer. This allows for easy wire application and easy viewing for cutting out stray bits you don't need.
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Jeremy
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Re: Ficus - What a growing season can achieve

Postby bonsai_beginner » October 6th, 2015, 5:18 pm

Thank you

I have this ficus that I'm wanting to begin ramification with but I'm not sure where or how to start that process. So by your method, you'd cut these branches back to two leaves?

Image

Image

And the method mentioned earlier, the pinch back, would remove this middle bud, correct?

Image


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Re: Ficus - What a growing season can achieve

Postby jezz_39 » October 6th, 2015, 5:24 pm

Correct, with pinching you would allow 2-3 leafs to open, then twist the apical bud off.

Most Figs bounce back with ease after a hard cutback, and present many more options with back budding. Your branches are quite long with no taper and only ramification at the tips. You will have to cut the branches by at least half. Timing will affect how the tree responds. You can do it now, or let it grow until mid summer so its nice and healthy, then cut back hard. I feel the latter would give you better results in the long run. When you do the cut back you can then repot and work on the root system.
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Jeremy
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Re: Ficus - What a growing season can achieve

Postby bonsai_beginner » October 6th, 2015, 5:27 pm

Thank Jezz! I think the latter is the better option too. I'll wait it out till it gets hotter before doing some pruning and root work


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