Bonsai Study Group Forum

Species Specific => Japanese Maple Bonsai Discussion => Topic started by: Kajukid on December 06, 2011, 02:35 PM

Title: hard pruned new Maple...
Post by: Kajukid on December 06, 2011, 02:35 PM
so i've been studying Boo's Maple DVD a lot...so i went to home Depot and picked up this maple for $60. its a sangokaku, well thats what it said... im going to repot in Fed. I'm really not sure what front i am going to use...
Title: Re: hard pruned new Maple...
Post by: John Kirby on December 06, 2011, 02:49 PM
Good start. The graft is pretty high on that tree, though it does look clean. You might consider airlayering it at the union and then pick your front based on how the new roots work out. John
Title: Re: hard pruned new Maple...
Post by: nathanbs on December 06, 2011, 03:21 PM
i would consider chopping the tree at your first branch and make the the new tree. it will give you believable taper, otherwise your tree has very little taper above that point
Title: Re: hard pruned new Maple...
Post by: Kajukid on December 06, 2011, 05:09 PM
Good start. The graft is pretty high on that tree, though it does look clean. You might consider airlayering it at the union and then pick your front based on how the new roots work out. John
Thanks John. Yeah I was thinking about air layering it but not anytime soon. I want to repot and then go from there. Next year I might do another chop on it. Or air layer it.
Title: Re: hard pruned new Maple...
Post by: Kajukid on December 06, 2011, 05:27 PM
Is it bad to have graft on the tree? Won't it heal over to were u can't see it?
Title: Re: hard pruned new Maple...
Post by: John Kirby on December 06, 2011, 07:36 PM
Nope. The grafts used in commercial japanese maple production tend to get worse with age, but if you air layer it right, you can get the benefits of the understock roots with the beauty of the scion plant. Isn't hard, work with a club this early spring and you can have it growing on its own roots in no time. You picked a marvelous variety.

Title: Re: hard pruned new Maple...
Post by: Jay on December 07, 2011, 10:32 AM
Question about the air-layer on this or other grafted trees.

I realize this tree was grafted for general garden use and not for Bonsai. If you were to air-layer it to remove the potential of the un even growth at the graft union would you:

1- air-layer above the current union and therefore remove the entire under stock?
2- air layer at or just below the union therefore leaving retaining some of the advantages of the understock?

Of course this 'assumes' that there is a good location for the layer in either place.

Slightly off topic but I think these questions make sense inside this thread.

Thanks
Jay
Title: Re: hard pruned new Maple...
Post by: John Kirby on December 07, 2011, 10:36 AM
Jay, right at the graft union to get the benefit of the strong "species" type roots. This tree has a good even graft, from the appearances, would work very well and end up like those expensive root crown grafts that you see periodically done espscially for bonsai.
Title: Re: hard pruned new Maple...
Post by: Chrisl on December 07, 2011, 10:52 AM
So theres no way to eliminate the joint entirely then John?  Maybe if you air layered at the joint, plus say an inch or two higher, then you could have the new nebari made entirely of Jap. Maple but with sangokaku roots?
Title: Re: hard pruned new Maple...
Post by: John Kirby on December 07, 2011, 11:06 AM
Chris, if you air-layer at the union the roots should come from both the scion and the understock. A lot of the brooms/mutant branches that gave rise to the named varieties are pretty weak on their own roots, you can benefit in many cases by including the understock.

You could airlayer it just about anywhere above the graft union if you choose to, you just don't know how strong it will be. You can also start from cuttings. The commercial guys graft for a number of reasons, one of which is they get more rapid growth from finicky growers another is that they know how to make it work with phenomenal success rates and it is fast.

John
Title: Re: hard pruned new Maple...
Post by: Jay on December 07, 2011, 11:40 AM
Thanks John, That's what I suspected but, I didn't want to 'assume' I was right.
Jay
Title: Re: hard pruned new Maple...
Post by: Chrisl on December 07, 2011, 11:59 AM
Agreed...Thanks John.  I myself try to avoid buying grafted trees, but it is always good to know what's possible.
Title: Re: hard pruned new Maple...
Post by: Kajukid on December 07, 2011, 01:52 PM
Okay so after repotting should I wait a year to air layer?
Title: Re: hard pruned new Maple...
Post by: John Kirby on December 08, 2011, 06:58 PM
I would just airlayer and not bother with repotting. Go to a club meeting and ask Boon.
Title: Re: hard pruned new Maple...
Post by: Kajukid on January 18, 2012, 03:25 PM
okay so i've been thinking and thinking about what i should do with this tree, and John you are right...im just going to airlayer it...but i have a quesiton, can i do 2 air layers at the same time on the same tree? i want to make 2 trees out of this one..and another question is how big is the air layer suppose to be?? in this pic it shows where i want to air layer it...
Title: Re: hard pruned new Maple...
Post by: John Kirby on January 18, 2012, 07:58 PM
You can do two airlayers if you like, they need to be at least 1/2 the diameter of the trunk (I believe this is rule of thumb not science based, but.....), you will need to get the sphagnum , rooting hormone, etc. I am going to do my maple at boon's in early March, I would suggest doing them when the buds start to swell and the tree starts getting the nice red buds. JOhn
Title: Re: hard pruned new Maple...
Post by: nathanbs on January 18, 2012, 10:06 PM
we are already getting bud swelling on a lot of species here in southern california. Im going to guess 2-3 weeks tops before jap maples are budding
Title: Re: hard pruned new Maple...
Post by: Kajukid on January 18, 2012, 11:38 PM
Thanks John. Yeah Boon said your going to be here in march. I'll be at the workshop on the 3rd. Boon said to do air layer in Feb.
Title: Re: hard pruned new Maple...
Post by: John Kirby on January 19, 2012, 12:36 AM
Yep, since I won't be able to get to Hayward before March, March it will have to be. Have fun with it, John
Title: Re: hard pruned new Maple...
Post by: nathanbs on January 19, 2012, 10:08 AM
it seems that there are mixed opinions on when it should be done anyhow. Some say early spring others say after leaves have hardened
Title: Re: hard pruned new Maple...
Post by: John Kirby on January 19, 2012, 10:27 AM
Nathan,
There are several approaches are possible, a consistently successful time to do this is at the time you would normally repot, at bud swelling This timing also gives the new roots the greatest period of growth before fall. I think te key thing is just to do it and then move on to development.
Title: Re: hard pruned new Maple...
Post by: Chrisl on January 19, 2012, 01:59 PM
One interesting thing I read the other day about air layering, evergreens in particular, but the process seems like it'd be good to try on any air layer.  And that was after removing all the cambium, use then either alcohol, or a torch on the hardwood to totally eliminate and cells you might have missed.  Then use gel, sph. moss as usual.  I'm going to try it on a red maple that didn't work this last year, and on a scots pine.