Winter is the time to do light pruning on your deciduous trees and, for those needing it, wiring. Today I worked on a couple of hawthorns, a Mayhaw and a riverflat hawthorn.

Hawthorn1-10-16-1This is the Mayhaw, Crataegus aestivalus, that I’ve been developing for the past five years. In 2015 I repotted the tree late – see “Did The Mayhaw Make It?” – and it responded with tremendous growth. I deliberately left the tree alone after it was repotted, not wanting to tax it unduly, and today when I went to trim it back there were plentiful shoots well over a foot long. So I trimmed everything back to within the appropriate silhouette, plus I removed crossing branches and those pointing straight up and straight down. The result looks very much like a real tree, of course with the exception of the crown which is about two years away from its final development. But you can’t argue with the very nice ramification I’ve gotten with this specimen. The trunk base is 2.75″ above the root crown, and it’s 22″ to the tip of the leader.



This riverflat hawthorn, Crataegus opaca, is without a doubt my favorite bonsai at present. Isn’t it lovely? This specimen has reached the point where it’s only lacking completion of the crown, most likely about two years away, and continued ramification as it matures. But all in all, this is just a gorgeous bonsai.

You may be wondering about the moss. It literally “exploded” late in the season, puffing up three inches over the soil surface. Very interesting. I plan to remove it in spring, but in the meantime I figure it’ll help with winter protection of the roots.

The trunk of this tree is 3.5″ above the root crown, and it’s 29″ tall.