Last year this time I made cutting from a elm tree that I repotted. The cuttings were mostly set up to be cascade and semi cascade neagari style trees. Neagari style means stilted roots.
This is the elms after a season in a basket. Good growth about three feet.
The cuttings were originally selected to be in the neagari style from the get go. Root sections were chosen for the shape and not so much for the size of the trunk. These will all be shohin size trees so size was not much of an issue.
Once it is out of the basket I set to work looking each cutting over to make sure it has good strong roots in which to support the tree in the future. They also must come from the end of the root in such a way as to be compact to form the long claw that will make the base of the tree.
This cutting will require a piece of wire around the roots pulling them down into a longer thinnish shape. This cutting has not had any of the roots trimmed yet and is full of feeder roots. All of the feeders from nearly half of the root system will be cut away leaving only the thick strong “stilt” root
This cutting has a nice bend right at the intersection of roots versus stem. This shape will make a nice semi cascade neagari style tree.
I use my hand to pull all the roots into a long cylinder and affix a wire to hold the shape.
The wired roots look like this. I need the roots to keep this shape while they grow next year. The following year I can seperate them and make them look more artistic if needed, but right now I am just building foundations.
Each tree was planted into a cut down water bottle to keep the feeder roots into some soil as they continue growing down. Each tree was cut back to a apex leader and a cascading leader. Branch building will start now while I work on the bases.
These are the only two non-cascading trees and these will be trained as broom style trees at the same time.