I started cleaning, styling, and wiring my first tree. Wow, it’s harder than it looks

Like the title says I bought my first piece of nursery stock ever and I have officially started the art of bonsai!

An Alberta Spruce! I was unaware of how hard they are to work with until after I purchased it. All I saw was cool trunk and small needles! Anyway, I was dying to work in something so I picked this up for $25 at Lowe’s.
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Here is a look at the tree after exposing the base and cleaning the tree. About 2/3 up the trunk the crazy inverse taper began caused by huge whirls of branches. So I cut the top off…
I started to get a little worried after this lol. I’m may have made a mistake. Oh well. This is for practice right? image
Here is the tree after preparing the branches for structural wire.
I have started wiring finally! This is where I’m at now. I haven’t started the apex yet because I’m still a little unsure how I’m going to approach it. It’s taken me 3 days working off and on all day to get this far. Mistakes were made. Many mistakes :joy:. I learned a lot and have had a ton of fun though! I’m stoked to finish this in the next couple days and start my next tree! Thoughts? Critique? Let me have it. Thanks in advance!


Hi @Karatechpsndwch
Good effort!
Bonsai is probably more about the process than the finish (if ever!) product.


Gotta say that wiring looks pretty good for a first time wiring session :+1:


Thanks! I’ve spent 50+ hours watching videos in the library since the beginning of December. I watched all three wiring videos two times a piece and took notes. I think that helped! I’m pretty spoiled I think. It’s pretty hard to watch someone else teach bonsai now… lol


Yeah, there no better way to start out than with Mirai Live :slight_smile:

Watching is fun. But doing is better.

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Welcome to the cult…errr I mean club, or was I right the first time…
The best advice I got when I started was this…“Find a group or club and join.” You have found Mirai and started in a great place. Try and find some locals tho. They will have knowledge of local trees and climate and insights that will be invaluable. I know there are some folks in Lubbock from my time there, but that’s been some years now,…and although that’s 90 min away it’s better than nothing.

Bonsai On!

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Awesome. I didn’t know Lubbock had a club! I’ve been looking for one. Thank you. It’s definitely the closest one to me so far.

So this is where I’m at now. I’m struggling with what to do with the top two branches. Try to make an apex? Lay them down like the rest of the branches and try to shape the top of the trunk later on? What do you all think?


You might also check out meetings with local garden clubs and nurseries, plant minded folks gatherings of all types. Odds are you will stumble across like minded tiny tree people along the way. I miss the West Texas weather, the short shot to NM, and the Ft. Davis Mountains. Good times.
Good luck! and Go TTech!!

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Ooh apex construction. This is practice right? I say you try to build the apex now with one of the two top branches. Wire the other one down as a branch.

There is this bit of tertiary content that I still find interesting when it comes to apex creation. I come back to it a lot.


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Sweet! Thanks for the link! Yeah it’s practice. Building the apex was my initial thought so I’ll give it a try!

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