The repotting of the kyohime triggered the coldest frostiest weather of the entire winter ! Luckily I had the garage ready (as the tree has broken dormancy in January 3 years running now) with a low bench and a 400w halide grow lamp & reflector rigged up ready.
As the tree was indoors I thinned the dense twigs that made the tree look like a birds nest, pulled down the main branches with guy wires then took a picture
The tree was too wide already but now it was 4" wider ! at a whopping 44". While corresponding with Dan Baton about making a pot for the tree in the future we have arrived at an ideal design where the growth is pushed back in with very hard prunning, getting the tree down to 28" wide with the current height or 30" wide if it gets taller. With this in mind I spent an hour on photoshop and produced the size we are aiming for
Now we are talking ! As you can see from the two pictures this is an easily achieved design, no artistic licence was taken moving trunks or adding mature new branches !, just a reduction of width, an increase in ramification and a nice outline. This also shows how much smaller the final pot design can go.
Now we have the plan, Dan likes it too, so I popped into the garage and pruned all lower branches back to an inner shoot. This will drive a new burst of buds on the inner bare branches in the coming weeks. The apex of the tree is a weaker area so the hard pruning lower down will strengthen the top too, helping to increase the ramification further up the tree.
This shows the reduction needed, and where to do it
This work is a perfect example of needing to make a tree look 'worse' in order to make it better in the long term. The very best way to get a potentially fantastic tree without paying silly money is to buy trees that have been neglected a little or lost their previous form. As long as a tree will make inner buds on old wood you are laughing.