Massive Yamadori Ponderosa Pine
Before you get into the images of this tree. I wanna tell you a quick story. This tree was collected at 6000 ft. on the southwest slope of a massive granite face. It was growing perfectly nestled in a bowl formed in the granite from erosion. From what I could tell it looked like the granite chipped away and broke down year after year. from the freeze thaw spring run off and created this pocket. Over time this tree took root there and began to grow. Over the years and I mean YEARS possibly into the 500-600 year range this tree fought back. Growing, extending searching and then getting hammered by snow load and run off. Somehow, the tree pushed on. When my friend Jason and I came across the tree we just examined it in awe….. how amazing this tree looked just perched on the side of this mountain. How incredible the twists and turns, the massive plated bark looked how intricate the deadwood worked its way around the tree. telling you a brief story of the hardships it faced. falling snow, rock, other fellow trees. This tree had been there for a millennium quietly pushing on, reaching for the sun and nutrients. We climbed down to the tree and thought - why not - we gave it a push……. Holy $h^t…. it moved… and not like some we often times run across… It literally moved without a massive amount of effort. Now I know that’s a relative term based on the mass of the tree and the stature of the trunk you will soon know what I mean. Often times we’ll run across a tree that needs coaxing from the surrounding soil… that coaxing turns into hours and searching for root mass or breaking of rock groupings to remove rootage….Well this tree was different - TOTALLY different. with the sense of excitement Jason and I began to REALLY examine the possibility of collecting this phenomenal tree. We gently began extraction and isolation of root pads, trying to locate tap roots or stubborn pockets of anchor roots…… BUT nothing…. After 3 hours we had the tree wrapped up completely free of the mountain it once clinged to. The two of us were in total amazement… Now we had to get this up the rock face, load it in the rig and not kill ourselves in the process. It took some good old fashioned ingenuity and patience. We got the monster into the rig and climbed out. Once the tree was loaded and secured. the drive back was a treat. The sheer size/weight was unreal. I have never collected something this massive and had no intentions of getting this on the way out for the day….. Once home I began constructing the box this tree would recover in for the next few years. I soon realized how ill equipped I was to unload and plant this wonder to my bonsai world…. I called in reinforcements for the nerve-wracking next chapter. My son and two buddies Jason and Dewayne came over to answer the call. Lucky for me Dewayne has a skid steer with forks and bucket. If not for that equipment, this operation would have been seriously more complex…… The pictures will not do this tree justice, but the video and upcoming update just might.
I want to say thank you to my wife, my family and friends that assisted and constantly provide support for this hobby, lifestyle or addiction (depending on the day). Thank you! I am blessed to have you in my life.