Author Topic: Nebari creation on young zelkova  (Read 4452 times)

Adair M

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Nebari creation on young zelkova
« on: March 30, 2014, 08:34 PM »
Last year I purchased a zelkova I thought had potential as a shohin.  I got it home, and when I bare rooted it, I found a poor root system.  It was in two layers.  I cut off the heavy bottom layer of roots, and cut back the tap root to the fine hair roots of the upper layer.  Screwed it to a piece of plywood.  (Boon told me later I should use a board, not plywood, but the plywood worked ok.)  Stuffed in some sphagnum moss, under the trunk.  And wired the plywood into a pot.  Backfilled with Boon Mix.

Here's the before pic:

 

Adair M

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Re: Nebari creation on young zelkova
« Reply #1 on: March 30, 2014, 08:43 PM »
So, yesterday, I gave a workshop on zelkova at Plant City Bonsai.  The trees were going to need MAJOR rootwork, and I knew the participants would be nervous about root pruning, so I brought my little tree to show how zelkova roots grow.  When I took it out of the pot, we found it had completely grown over the plywood, and the roots were circling the bottom of the pot.  I have a couple of pictures:

 

Adair M

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Re: Nebari creation on young zelkova
« Reply #2 on: March 30, 2014, 08:46 PM »
So, I proceeded to go ahead and prune it back, and repot it:

 

Judy

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Re: Nebari creation on young zelkova
« Reply #3 on: March 30, 2014, 09:52 PM »
Good job Adair, nothing is better than the actual pudding for proof!
 

bwaynef

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Re: Nebari creation on young zelkova
« Reply #4 on: March 30, 2014, 10:36 PM »
Those roots seem to have thickened up considerably for one year.  Way to go!
 

Adair M

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Re: Nebari creation on young zelkova
« Reply #5 on: March 30, 2014, 11:19 PM »
Multiplied, too!

There was one small section that did not produce new roots.  So, I cut "windows" with a sharp blade, touched a dab of rooting hormone, applied sphagnum moss, and repotted.  I also propped two roots away from each other using a peg cut from a chopstick.

The long term goal is to develop a "plate" nebari.  We'll see.
 

Owen Reich

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Re: Nebari creation on young zelkova
« Reply #6 on: March 31, 2014, 07:45 AM »
Nicely done.
 

Chrisl

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Re: Nebari creation on young zelkova
« Reply #7 on: March 31, 2014, 10:01 AM »
Very nice progress Adair!
 

jacksmom

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Re: Nebari creation on young zelkova
« Reply #8 on: March 31, 2014, 03:07 PM »
Wow amazing what a year will add. This is a question from a beginner: but what is the purpose of the screws on the plywood? Thanks


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bwaynef

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Re: Nebari creation on young zelkova
« Reply #9 on: March 31, 2014, 03:21 PM »
To save Adair from having to respond, he's said elsewhere that the screws were used to give a point to wire the board to the pot in place of sufficiently-sized roots.
 

jacksmom

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Re: Nebari creation on young zelkova
« Reply #10 on: March 31, 2014, 06:51 PM »
Thank you. Will have to try that. The outcome is outstanding.


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Adair M

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Re: Nebari creation on young zelkova
« Reply #11 on: March 31, 2014, 10:05 PM »
When I inserted the screw last year, to screw it to the board, it started splitting the trunk a little.  So, I drilled a pilot hole to make room for the screw.  I noticed it still swelled the trunk out.  If I split it any, it healed up perfectly.

Which got me to thinking...

I'm planning to have this little tree in a shohin display at the Atlanta Bonsai Society show in mid-May.  Yeah, I know, it's really not yet show worthy, but if you saw what they display at the ABS shows... well, it doesn't really matter.  It will create quite a stir because of the extremely thin pot it's in.

Anyway, after the show, I'll up pot it for ease of care, and let the roots expand.  My goal is to create a plate style nebari.  But, when I up pot it, I can probably put another screw up the bottom of the trunk.  Maybe a little longer, and a little fatter than last time.  Which should help "expand" the trunk!  Plant it deep again, and let it grow.

It might just work!
 

jlushious

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Re: Nebari creation on young zelkova
« Reply #12 on: April 01, 2014, 09:39 AM »
That's an interesting idea Adair, I'd be interested to see how it goes. Did you remove the screw when you repotted it recently?
 

Adair M

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Re: Nebari creation on young zelkova
« Reply #13 on: April 01, 2014, 09:58 AM »
I removed the screw to take it off the board.
 

jlushious

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Re: Nebari creation on young zelkova
« Reply #14 on: April 01, 2014, 10:30 AM »
Thanks, that's a good method for attaching to the board. I have a few trees that are thick enough for a screw but don't have enough root mass for wiring in!