The seedlings from last year have done really well. They put out buds and have many small branches already. To match what I did to the trunks, I thought only appropriate for the branches. I made some small screen cages to train the branches under much like I did with the seedlings.
This is one of the seedlings. The trunk is already at the edge of the hole drilled into the tera cotta plate. It will begin layering itself very soon. Probably about 60 days it will have roots on top of the plate. There are small branches at each node on the trunk and now is the time to begin their training.
This is the screen cage I made for the seedlings. The branches will just swirl around in this confined cage and make all sorts of twists and turns. Time will tell if I am successful.
I made three in all. The other maples are in groups of three planted thru a tile also. Those will be trained with more traditional methods.