This photo shows where we left off with my water-elm “Dragon” last fall. It had grown out very strong following the initial styling, unwiring and then trimming judiciously. Since this photo was taken in October, the tree didn’t grow much more prior to dormancy.

Yesterday I gave Dragon its summer pruning. I perform this operation pretty quickly. Prune to shape, remove crossing branches, remove branches pointing downward, remove some branches pointing upward and shorten others that have a part in the design. Isn’t it looking great, after only two and a half years?

With water-elm, you generally only need to do a couple of rounds of wiring before you can begin the grow-and-clip phase of development. They really respond well to this technique, among the best in fact of any species I work with.

Stay tuned for more on water-elm in the coming weeks. We’ll be out again soon, collecting material for next year.

I’d love to know what you think of this specimen. Leave me a comment below.