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Ficus Bonsai

Elm Tree Progression - a Story of Growth

Progression of an Ulmus americana (American Elm)

About 2010 this tree was a bonsai only by collection and pot culture, never styled. Sitting in a cat litter box, planted in lava rock and pumice, this tree needed some love. I had yet to have this tree in my possession. This same year, I was given the opportunity to purchase the tree. I had absolutly no relationship with this elm yet but I knew I was willing to except a chalange. The only picture I have from back then is when I first styled it in 2014 (the same year of purchase, planted in a new container). This photo shows the back of the tree (this was the front back then).

After this the tree sat for about 2 years in this possition. Then I aquired a new bonsai pot and figured this tree needed a change. The pot it was in in its early days was a painted cast iron pot. This was way too heavy for this tree and did nothing for astetics. This next photo is its new syle and new pot which created an image and feeling I connected with. Wired and styled again in 2016, this picture shows the Elm in Spring of 2017 just before bud break. The Leaves of the American Elm are somewhat large but start out small in the spring. The tree is best viewed just before the leaves come out, as the buds begin to swell.

Spring of 2018 this pot chiped significantly on the inside, telling me that this tree wanted a new home. I had to wait to find the perfect container. By chance, this same year, fall 2018 in Madison Indiana at the Madison Chautauqua Festival of Art, not at the festival but at a nature shop nearby, sitting in the back of the store on a clearance shelf, was a bonsai pot, unrelated to anything in this store. Fate, the universe, destined to happen, this pot sat there in the dark, next to an orange clearance sign. I did not hesitate to add this pot to my collection. I looked at it in amazement. I did not know it was for the Elm untill I brought it back home. The elm tree sat there asking me about this new pot and what it was about. We talked and eventually sitting them together, bringing the tree home.

At this point, it's 2021, new wire, new branch growth, better style, allowing this tree to become part of its ellement. This tree has a soul that speaks. Still growing, still coming into age, just beginning its life in its refinement.

Now, 2022, at the time of thie article, this tree sits, calm, in its home, watching the world go by allowing me to gently move its branches. This tree feels comfortable to me. It is my friend; we work together in harmony. The mud man, found at an antique mall, fits this landscape perfectly. We are all traveling together.

Lastly, I have drawn up a rendering (before and after) of this tree as to invision the future and how I would like to further along the ramification. Thanks for stoping by.


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