Swamp Layering?

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Swamp Layering?

Post  Carolee on Fri Aug 28, 2009 6:26 pm

I was reading a description by Nick Lentz on the styling of a tree in which he used the phrase "swamp layered". Does anyone know what this means? Thanks, Carolee

Carolee
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Re: Swamp Layering?

Post  Kev Bailey on Fri Aug 28, 2009 6:33 pm

I assume he means it was a Bald or Swamp Cypress, that has been air or ground layered. I've ground layered one myself but the details were all on the old forum and I can't locate the pics. I removed 2" of bark around the base of the trunk just above ugly roots. Then I enclosed the base of the trunk in a split pot with the bottom cut off. This was filled with potting mix and kept well watered. After a year I opened it up removed all soil and sawed off the old roots. It is doing well today and will be styled soon.

I suppose he could also be referring to any tree that has rooted itself into a marsh area?

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“It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent. It is the one that is the most adaptable to change.” - Charles Darwin.

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Re: Swamp Layering?

Post  Rob Kempinski on Fri Aug 28, 2009 7:05 pm

Kev Bailey wrote:

I suppose he could also be referring to any tree that has rooted itself into a marsh area?

I believe this is what he means, as least as he describes it in his book about collecting Larch from bogs.

Here is a photo of a bald cypress that lives in an area that is intentionally flooded each year for about 6 months. During that flood, the tree tries to self layer itself into the water/air transition. When the water is withdrawn the roots are several feet above the ground.

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Re: Swamp Layering?

Post  Carolee on Sat Aug 29, 2009 3:13 am

Kev & Rob, Thank you. That sounds right.

Carolee
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Re:Swamp Layering

Post  Geof on Sat Aug 29, 2009 5:28 pm

Hi Carolee,
Being a Nick student I can tell you. Larch are collected from Spagnum bogs and Larch are only one of a few that grow in such an acidic enviroment. What happens is the tree grows and so does the bog. Under the top layer of Spagnum once you pull some away from the tree you will see the waterline. It may be 6" below the surface. Below this the roots die off due to lack of Oxygen. The Larch responds to this by sending out adventigious roots from the trunk into the spagnum layer which has oxygen.
This is why Larch are easily collected in a bog. You pull away a bit of Spagnum and trace out the roots, cutting the taproot and saving the finer roots.

The process is almost similar to airlayering. Natural air layering.
I believe the Spagnum may have some natural hormones which help this process as well as the tree wanting to live. In Nick's book he also talks about creating a mini bog in which to get roots higher up on the trunk. Larch are great to work with if you live in a northern climate. They also grow fast if you fertilize well. I have a friend who put on a little too much fertilizer and the tree was bursting at the seems. The tree was expanding so the bark had split open and a lot of sap was coming out! Shocked
Regards,
Geof

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Re: Swamp Layering?

Post  Kev Bailey on Sat Aug 29, 2009 5:34 pm

Thanks for reminding us of that Geof. Scots pine respond in a similar way, as noted in Peter Adams books. I've collected a few from a sphagnum filled lake that dries out every summer. The flat root pad and lack of tap root made them a breeze to lift and pot up. Shame there aren't any more of them. The forestry commission actually asked us to remove them to preserve the lake habitat. These trees had self seeded from surrounding pine stands.

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Re: Swamp layering

Post  Geof on Sat Aug 29, 2009 5:41 pm

Hey Kev,
I love Scots pine the best pine for bonsai in my opinion. If you wait a minute I be right over to help you clean out that "lake". Very Happy
Geof

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