Hi all,I was given a kit for my birthday with multiple seeds in. Some have just finished the 90 day stratification and others have been growing. I have 2 particular ones that have gone mad and grown huge in the last 4 months. Both are Jacaranda mimosifioa and the book says not to prune or shape for the first 2 years, but they are getting really tall - around 14 inches already and 18 inches wide tip to tip. Pictures attached, should I be pruning them now and wiring to shape?? 2 years seems a long time
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You can prune and wire to shape now, but it will still be possible to do it in 3 to 5 years. As long as the trunk can be bend the option is open. The longer you wait, the more foliage grown the faster it will thicken up. And that is what we want. The bigger pot you put it in, the faster you are forced to make a decition. But space is often a limitation. The longer you wait the bigger the pruning scars will be and the longer it takes to heal. That is the balance we all struggling with. You may shose one approach on this tree and another abroach on another. Or get another tree or another species to try another approach.
This species needs to thicken up considerably to make a nice bonsai. There are no branches yet, just clusters of foliage that will become branches in the future.
With my current view on early development, I prefere early wiering. I keep low branches for options. One option is to use them as sacrificial branch, the other is to use it as a new leader. Both options is about buildig taper. But that decition is a few years away. Anyway, bonsai is a maraton not a sprint. As long as the options is open there are no reason to cut them away.
Read up on different styling techniques. There are no hurry to make a decition. Just make sure you understand the pros and cons with your decition before you take them.
Buy a book. What you have is not a bonsai, it needs growing a lot more first before it gets to a point where it might be considered bonsai. This plant is not the easiest for training, I think you need just to grow it on and then cut back. Bonsai can be whatever size you want and depending on the plant, will dictate the size
So how do I stop it growing taller? It’s already much taller / bigger than I envisaged for a bonsai. Or is this something I chop down to size once the trunk is the right thickness?
You are totally right. We cannot stop trees from growing taller. That is in their nature. When the time is right to prune in order to support a design idea we take the decition. Your tree is still a thin pencil. Pruning now will slow down thickening. At this point thickening is what you want.