Every year I start up with my students different long time projects. We always do that with a group of about 10 people. We started up with the same variety of the same age with the whole group. This example shows the Oak of one of the students which was started up in december 2003. This is a 14 year old Oak cultivated in our nursery, we potted him up in a very big pot in pure akadama.
By every step we do I made a scedule with what they have to do at home and when the tree has to come back on a workshop. This photo is from 1st check up in july 2004. I just told them to let everything grow, fertilising and watering.
One year later, december 2004, we did the first winterpruning and removed all the strong growth.
Two years later, november 2005, another check up. From now on we remove every year the strong buds on the end of the branches. We made already a decission not to wire the trees, just by pruning and wire that pulls the branches down has to give us a more natural looking Oak tree.
Again I told them to let everything grow, except on the end of the summer removing the strong buds again. Photo taken in august 2006.
November 2007, the previous summer we had worked intensively on the leaves to let more light in and we worked only on the outside part. Result a lot of small ramifications on the inside.
Februari 2009, the tree starts to get his volume. We did some drastic winterprunings to open the whole tree. The root base is already improved and the bark of the trunk looks older.
August 2009, previous techniques repeated and some new wires pulling the most important branches down.
Juni 2010, end of our cultivation process. This was his last season in the oversized pot. We achieved everything that we needed over a period of 7 years.
March 2011, we selected a first bonsaipot that fits with the autumn colour. We did some winterpruning and from now on we can talk about a bonsai, that means that all techniques to be done are changing from now on. This prooves again that long time projects are worth to be done. Many thanks to Johan for trusting me by this project.