Unless I am mistaken your plant is about 1/50th the thickness of that azalea you are showing. You will need a lot of growth on the trunk before you get anywhere near. Which is exactly my point of being pushy: To get a trunk, you need growth. You shoulw grow this plant VERY large, then start reducing main branches to the main structure. It is a 25+ year project to get near this image (And even then, trees in Japan grow much faster than in Europe; Not sure of your local climate).
You could still have a small mame azalea - they do look very nice if done well. I kept one this winter for a club member. Twenty-some years in training and less than 7" tall. After all that training, the trunk had taken on a beautiful gnarled form with very pretty nebari.
John Geanangle does this to his many of his smaller azaleas, more to create pads for showy flowers - nothing more. Those particular don't have full-on branch structures. They certainly make excellent accent pieces or as additions to landscape plantings.
Agreed with leatherback, though, if you want to have visible branching or the thicker base.
I must not be "verbalizing" my vision very clearly. I am doing a smaller bonsai. I am happy with the thickness of the truck (and that is why I hard pruned it). I like the photo of the other azalea I posted but do not expect it to be that large. I want it to have the canopy of the image but not taller than 12 inches.
Not really,but I now do understand you are not aiming at that size...?
Just think about the ratios.. For a 30 cm tall tree, you would normally be looking ad a 2-5cm trunk, to get a convincing image. I think yours is quite a bit smaller?.
But hey, in the end, it has to sit in your garden, so it has to match your vision and not one of an old japanese per se..
The following user(s) said Thank You: Bonsai Bender
Soo... still being a rookie (or even a pre-rookie) I see why you all were asking these questions. My vision of this azalea was unreasonable and I see that now. It had a good growing season but as leatherback and others said the trunk wasn't developed enough. It will become a shohin azalea in the next 2-5 years (need time to develop branch structure). I don't know if you have seen my other feed where I am tracking it's progress but here is the latest picture. Don't worry, come March (early spring) it will get trimmed.
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