Monday, 23 January 2017

Post 231 Trunk thickening

Six months ago I wanted to take a picture to support a description of the air layering process for my book, 'Bonsai Foundations'. So I cut a ring of bark from the sacrificial branch on a Ficus natalensis, also featured in the book. At the point of the incision it is probably 25 to 28mm diameter.

Here it is with the bark removed. After taking the photo I returned the ring of bark and bound it up with grafting tape. The branch never missed a beat and very quickly healed/sealed up the cuts. On the following photo you can see the cut site and the swelling that arose from the recovery.

I struck this tree from a small cutting in 2012. That makes it 4 years old. The sacrifice branch has made a big difference to the development of the trunk and taper.

 This is a closeup of the site and you can clearly see the callus tissue that has formed in the cuts to seal it all up. It has produced an interesting swelling. Impact or penetration damage to a tunk has been known to result in swelling repair and this can be a useful way to address reverse taper.

 This is the start of a new experiment further down the same branch. This time I'm cutting out a crown shaped piece of bark. Here it is cut around the edges.

 This is the piece of bark removed.

 And where it came from.

 Here it has been returned.

 And then finally bound up with grafting tape while it seals up and recovers. I'll post the outcome in a couple of months time. The experiment is to assess the value of doing this at ground level of a trunk with limited taper.

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