Some readers have been asking me to see examples of my Dragon-Eye Pine Tree, and how I have been pruning it.  I’ll be the first to admit that I’m new to Niwaki pruning, and have been learning over the past 2 years.  But some photo’s may be useful to newbie Niwaki-ers.  Below I’ve laid out the different parts of a tree.  Reference back to my previous posts on Niwaki technique.

The Needle, The Branch, and The Tree

Here are close up photo’s of the parts of the Tree that are pruned.  They are specific to my Dragon-Eye Pine Tree, or any Pine-Tree.

A Pine-Tree Branch That has been Pruned Over 2 Years

A Pine-Tree Branch That has been Pruned Over 2 Years

A Branch, Pruned for 3 Years

So, here is a side branch.  And we can see how things have evolved since I started pruning it.

  • 2010 – First, the original branch in 2010 which was not pruned.  I bought the tree from a Nursery which were not utilizing Niwaki.
  • 2011 – This was my first pruning job.  I pruned the “needle” down to 1/4 Inch in late spring. That branch was stunted in Size, but still alive.
  • 2012 – This pruned branch produced 4 needles in Spring 2012.  Again, I hard pruned these needles to 1/4 Inch.  You can start to see now, how the combined stunted branches are making an interesting shape.

    Dragon Eye Pine Tree Branch - 3 Year View

    Dragon Eye Pine Tree Branch – 3 Year View

A Regular Branch, UnPruned

So this is my trunk leader, which I do not prune.  Look at the difference, it puts on at least 1 foot of growth a year.  My stunted branches are stopped at 1/4 inch, and stay that length.

Dragon Eye Pine Tree - Leader Branch

Dragon Eye Pine Tree – Leader Branch

Overall Tree Shape

So 3 three years, with some amateurish pruning, already you can see the cloud shapes forming.  I believe in 2 years, I’ll have a tree that exhibits like a Niwaki Tree.

Dragon Eye Pine Tree - Showing Japanese "Cloud" Shape

Dragon Eye Pine Tree – Showing Japanese “Cloud” Shape

Dragon Eye Pine-Tree - Showing Japanese "Cloud" Shape - Close up

Dragon Eye Pine-Tree – Showing Japanese “Cloud” Shape – Close up

Reference Material

I swear by this book, as it’s the only book in English that lays out the rules of Japanese Pruning.  It is clear and easy to use.  If I ever find a better reference book, I will post it.

The best book on Niwaki Pruning in English

The best book on Niwaki Pruning in English

4 Responses so far.

  1. Wow, I could use this book. I am a bonsai enthusiast. I’ve never seen an entire book on pruning. Thanks.

  2. Bonsai Man says:

    If you are interested, we are looking for people to blog about pruning and Bonsai subjects.

  3. Good day! I know this is kind of off topic but I was wondering which blog platform are you
    using for this site? I’m getting sick and tired of WordPress because I’ve had problems with hackers and I’m looking at options for another platform.
    I would be great if you could point me in the
    direction of a good platform.


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