Entry: Lonicera Morrowii – Amur Honeysuckle – USA
This variety of honeysuckle is an invasive species that grows rampantly in my area. I collected this tree in March of this year from the edge of a family member’s driveway. This is a fast growing species with a meandering growth pattern of the live veins that creates gnarly trunks. I chose this material because it recovers quickly from collection and grows very fast, which will allow me to create the primary structure of the final tree over the course of this growing season and within the time frame of the contest.
This tree in is 11.5 in. (29 cm) tall. It has some nice movement to the live veins on the trunk and interesting areas of dead wood. After collection it was immediately potted into the current pot, which although slightly too large accentuate the bark color. Over the course of the contest I plan to refine the dead wood as well as set the primary branch structure and apex. In the end I see the tree as a gnarly old informal upright with nice movement and deadwood features.
One Quarter Progression
At this stage I have begun to lay out the initial branch structure. I have also reduced a few unnecessary branches and removed some heavier parts of the wood. The branch that will become the apex has been chosen and set in place.
Half Way Progression
Here you can see that the branches have begun to grow well and I have begun to reduce the the deadwood some. Over the next two stages I will accentuate the character of the deadwood by carving and reducing the visual weight.
Three Quarter Progression
Here I have continued to reduce the weight of the deadwood and wired some of the secondary branches into place. Unfortunately due to some local deer the apex has been damaged. Hopefully it will still have enough warm weather left to grow out, but we will see. The next stage will be to finish working the dead areas of the tree and prune the branches into shape.
This tree began as a newly collected tree. Over the course of the growing season the lower branch structure has taken shape. Due to some deer browsing the apex area did not grow out as much as I would have hoped. Over next season I intend to continue to develop the apex by thickening and creating more branches. I am torn over the heavy branch on the right side. It is interesting and has character, but is comes out from the trunk at a poor angle and does not have any secondary branching near to the trunk. I debated removing this branch, but will wait until the tree has developed more before I make the final decision. I am happy with the trunk and how the carving has progressed. I think this will be a very nice tree in the future.
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Final Outcome: 5
Good beginner material, it’s hard to compete against MUCH better material.
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Final Outcome: 7
Needs more time.
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Final Outcome: 6