|February 2008 - before the workshop|
The tree I took to that workshop was the Ficus Wiandi above. It's a rather brittle variety of Ficus, so I was advised not to wire the branches but rather to style it using the clip and grow method, aided by the odd stick used for support.
I removed some of the unwanted branches at that workshop but told my instructor that I'd remove the others at home . My reason? I wanted to plant the cuttings. At that stage my tree looked like this:
|February 2008 - after the workshop|
|February 2008 - after final pruning|
|December 2008 - before pruning|
|December 2008 - after pruning|
The highlight of my relationship with that tree was when I displayed it at our 2009 club show, only 20 months after that first workshop. It didn't take much to satisfy me back then and our club has always encouraged beginners to show their trees, so this is what I put on display:
|On show - October 2009|
As I grew more experienced I started to see my tree's shortcomings and tried to improve its appearance, but in doing so I forgot my instructor's advice and tried to wire one of the branches. Sure enough it broke off.
I still persevered with it for a while after that, but it refused to do what I wanted it to, so when show time came around again, I decided to put it on the sales table.
On the first morning of the show one of our senior members was looking at the sales table and got into a discussion on how to improve my tree. Apparently he decided to demonstrate what he would do and, unaware of its brittle nature, he snapped off another branch. Under the circumstances he felt obliged to buy the tree.
I still have one of its cuttings.
|Uncooperative cutting - December 2015|
It has developed a nice plump base, but like its parent before it, it refuses to give me a decent branch structure to work with. I keep cutting back the top, hoping to get some back-budding, but I fear I'm fighting a losing battle.