Acer campestre or Field maple is the only member of the large maple family that is native to the UK.
. In the landscape it makes a small to medium size tree that is frequently found in our hedgerows. Lovely autumn colour is a feature of the species with the foliage turning a clear yellow sometimes with a flush of red.
As it is native to all parts of the UK. it performs really well as a bonsai. Vigorous, very resilient and easy to grow and develop. Though the growth character may not be as ideal as say, A. palmatum, it is, nevertheless, pretty good and an understanding of the correct pruning techniques will lead to short, compact, twiggy growth and reduced leaf size. It is a very rewarding native species with which to bonsai.
This example is quite a tall bonsai at 80 cm. high and it has a branch spread of 65 cm. The trunk is quite substantial also, that buttressing, some of which is deadwood, in 26 cm. wide just above soil level. The actual trunk diam. above that is 14 cm. Obviously the main feature of this bonsai is the heavily carved trunk which can form the basis for a typical storm of lightening damaged hedgerow tree very commonly seen in the landscape. To make this image more convincing the main task is to grow and develop the canopy of branches to suit the trunk. There exists the makings of a primary branch structure which can be built upon with the simple task of growing and pruning which will not be a long job with this vigorous species. It is planted in a glazed Chinese round pot 40×11 cm.