This is what he wrote beneath the picture: “During the repotting process, I went through the tree and cut a few branches off so that the roots don’t have to work as hard to support the foliage. Balancing the root mass to the foliage mass is very helpful when working with newly collected trees. This could be the difference between life and death of the tree.”
I have to agree with regards to the root amount left in the collection paragraph. Although, from what I read, Peter did not collect this himself. He states, several times, that he bought the tree. As I read the text, we have no real certainty if the foliage has/has not been cut at the time of collecting.