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To start an Informal Upright Bonsai quickly & well, find a plant with a trunk thickness and shape you appreciate. You will get the taper & zig zag shape by choosing the proper branch to make as the new top. Cut off the tree above that branch. If it has a branch off of it back the other way use that as the very top and wire and prune accordingly. What I am describing will take you to the 3rd branch level in this picture. It will continue to grow & be styled until you end up with one like this...
PRUNING! Some people really have a difficult time pruning and cutting any branch is almost impossible for them. There's not much we can do to help them. But we can explain WHY we prune as drastically as we do . . . Simply because it produces outstanding results! So here are more no-nonsense explanations presented with the hope you will substitute knowledge to overcome fear and move into training bonsai! THE PRINCIPLES WORK! GOOD LUCK!