Rocky Mountain Juniper Cleanup

This RMJ was collected spring 2012 in the Canadian Rockies. While it has been growing very well, it probably won’t be ready for styling work until next year.

In the meantime, I cleaned the tree up, removing dead bark and highlighting the live vein. Probably the most frustrating task is removing old dead bark that is fused to the deadwood. I have found two tools to be particularly useful for this. Use as sparingly as possible to minimize toolmarks.

After several hours of work, the tree is nice and tidy, and ready for further examination. It has some outstanding features, but some challenges as well (as with all yamadori). One of the main challenges will be how to approach the three “trunks” that emerge. Should drastic measures be taken to hide their awkwardness? Or should they be highlighted as a feature which makes this tree unique?

One problem was identified as I was studying the live vein. When the tree was collected, a relatively large branch (thumb thickness) was cut at the top of the tree. The corresponding live vein (which is lovely and could be a focal point of the design) is weakening. I am expecting the live vein to thin out significantly, but I hope it doesn’t die back completely. It will probably take a few years to know the result.

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3 Responses

  1. John

    How did you find Canadian collected tree.How much raw material tree like this costs?

    August 2, 2013 at 10:57 am

    • Hi John,

      I have a friend who has been collecting in the BC interior for several years. If you are seriously interested in acquiring a tree like this drop me an email and I can put you in contact with him, although I’m not sure what he has available right now. Regarding price… well obviously they are not cheap. But you can expect to pay less than what a similar tree would cost you in the US.

      August 2, 2013 at 4:51 pm

  2. Monte

    Hey Aaron, it makes me happy to see the tree looking super healthy as it does. It looks amazingly vigorous really for only the 2nd year from collection.
    I’m trying to remember cutting the branch you mention. I’ll bet it was to fit it into the shipping box. Anyway, good luck with that vein, looks good all cleaned up!

    August 5, 2013 at 11:11 pm

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