First design work, critiques welcome!

Hey all! I started collecting trees last year and styled a dwarf Alberta spruce. This spring I repotted it into my first pot and freshened up the design a bit by adjusting the branch angle and adding the leeeeeean. There’s a bunch of buds coming in since this photo was taken two weeks ago and I’m looking forward to pinching growth and hoping for back budding. Apexes are tricky and I may have initially taken too much off. Hopefully I’ll get enough growth to fashion one on the higher of the two trunks.

Then this spring I collected some small birch and planted them in a forest group. I didn’t do much except an initial trim (maybe this was a mistake). Hoping they survive, but we’ll see.

Any advice or critiques welcome!



Really nice work, you have a great eye for design!

I reacted to one thing you wrote, that you’re gonna pinch the spruce and hope for backbudding. The way to get backbudding is to let the tree grow freely until it hardens off. The accumulation of energy from the new growth is what is going to lay the foundation for the backbudding. The when you see the actual buds you can cut back to stimulate and the develop them. So basically leave the tree until you see the backbudding taking place. The way you have layed out the branches will optimize the photosynthetic process.

Really nice trees and very nice design! Keep up the good work!

Greetings from Sweden!

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And welcome to the Mirai family @MedfordMike, forgot to say that in my last post :grin:

Thanks Reuter!

After posting I watched the engelmann spruce pinching video. I’ll make sure to only pinch buds that are strong, already too long, and have weaker buds further up the branch.

Most of the tree will need the post-harden pruning as you suggested.

Also with weather like this this morning I’m glad I took the trees into the porch. :joy:

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