Ficus telephone pole in a pot progression.

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Ficus telephone pole in a pot progression.

Post  lennard on Sun Apr 07, 2013 3:55 pm

The tree in December 2009:

The tree was grown in a very small garden directly above a drain pipe so it had to be removed. I was just starting in bonsai and decided that the tree was worth experimenting on because it had a nice nebari. In January 2011 I opened up the surface roots and did some work on them:

I air layered the tree not to waste material but I realized soon that I was wasting a lot of time that could have gone into developing the lower trunk. In June 2010 I removed the air layer and ringbarked the tree. To be realistic a slanted cut will not have worked in this material because it would have taken forever to grow over and if I wanted to achieve a grown over wound the tree would have been too big at the end. At that stage I decided on a natural open umbrella big tree Ficus style. The tree sprouted growth on the wound caused by the ringbark and not from latent buds- doing some research I learned a lot about auxins and meristematic growth:

Here is the tree after removing the trunk above the ringbarked area:

From that time I let the tree grow freely to fatten up the branches. In that time I tried to figure out how I am going to close up the flat cut wound. I was thinking of bringing back thinner twigs to fuse them onto the wound area to build a crown and hide the chop.

The deadwood in the middle of the trunk cracked a lot so I sealed the wound with waterproof sealant - did not need the trunk rotting away before the new branches have thickened up - half of the air layer died and that added to my worries. I had to cut back the branches a few times to develop the branch structure and to prevent the heavy branches from tearing away from the trunk. Here is the tree today and I am happy with it's progress so far:

To solve the chop problem I convinced myself that the tree could be grown as a far view tree as a focus point in my garden.

This year the tree has grown a lot of aerial roots close to the chop:

The roots opened up the possibility of covering the wound up with fused roots and roots fused to twigs that I can bend back to the center of the trunk. As these roots developed I directed them back to the chop area:

I will start this fusing project in September 2013.

Any thoughts and ideas on this will be appreciated.


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