Entry: Taxus x media ‘Densiformis’ – ‘Densiformis’ hybrid yew – USA – WITHDRAWN
Purchased from local Big R store’s garden center.
Mature yews do not look like mature pines or spruces. I want to develop, or help develop, a “yew style:” a look that reflects the natural look of a mature old yew. This seems a good way to start bringing this idea to the attention of the bonsai public.
I see in this stock a good start toward the look of a mature yew: a stocky lower trunk, perhaps with some shari and uro, and several sub-trunks, more erect than sub-trunks of a pine would be; branching that while more drooping than that of a maple, is less so than that of a pine; a rounded crown.
One Quarter Progression
I repotted the tree; this let me find a usable nebari, and decide on a final planting angle and front. I also selected the main trunk, and two sub-trunks. Some other major branches were removed, some were left for a while to feed the tree’s recovery.
I still intend to represent the natural look of a mature yew: much like a broom, but not quite so vigorously upright as a maple or elm would be. There will definitely be shari, and probably a few jins.
Half Way Progression
Since the last set of pictures, I did the carving that shows in these pictures. This was done to disguise the bit of reverse taper at the top of the trunk bole, and to reduce the visual impact of the root spur that projects on the viewer’s left. I also made the final selection of main trunk and sub-trunks.
Three Quarter Progression
This stage of styling consisted of wiring and positioning the subtrunks and primary branches. To reiterate, I’m after the look of a mature yew, which is not the same as the look of a whorl-branching conifer like a pine. Yews have stronger wood, so their growth is more upright. I’ll introduce droop in the secondary and tertiary branches.
The present right-leaning apex is temporary: I left it for now, to keep pulling water and nutrients up thru the system. All of the branches were left longer than they will eventually be, so as to leave the tree enough foliage to feed recovery.
After the base fills out some more, I expect to reduce the spur root on the viewer’s left to a small jinned stub. It is still supplying that side of the tree with some water, so I’m not going to remove it immediately.