How do you re-grow branches?

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How do you re-grow branches?

Post  bonsai monkey on Fri Jan 15, 2010 2:33 pm

Another question from the Ministry of Silly Questions.

Following on from a comment that Tony made re Harleyrider’s new Oak how do you go about growing convincing new branches on trees especially, like Steve’s tree, with real old bark? I sort of “know” how a branch grows but what sort of feeding regime would you need and is new branch placement an element of luck? Everytime I have attempted this process the result has been quite disappointing.

Many thanks in anticipation of your reply,
Simon

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Re: How do you re-grow branches?

Post  Fuzzy on Fri Jan 15, 2010 3:58 pm

Hi Simon
I’m no expert but in my experience with Elms I find that so long as the tree is super healthy (and this applies to all trees) and you time your pruning to the correct time of year you’d be very unlucky not to have a bud break somewhere in the area you want. That said I also find that being flexible in your design options helps and also makes bonsai more exciting. The tree may present to you an option you’d not considered. With regards to the feeding of the tree you won’t go wrong with a good well balanced fertilizer. Oh’ and about the old bark development on branches……..Time lots and lots of time. Remember also that all the different species of trees have there own idiosyncrasies, so get to know your tree!

Hope this helps Smile
Russ.

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Re: How do you re-grow branches?

Post  JimLewis on Fri Jan 15, 2010 8:05 pm

It's going to depend:

  • On the species.


  • On the time of year


  • On the health of the tree


  • On how much of a hurry you are


And yes, where the branches sprout is a matter of luck. As Fuzzy says, Chinese elms are quite cooperative and will put out more branches in more places than you can use. The oak, on the other hand often will refuse to cooperate. Don't even try branch replacement with a beech.

You really do NOT want to go into a heavy feeding regime unless you are in a position to watch your tree closely. Too much fertilizer will produce long internodes unless you're right there to pinch them back.

Except with an elm, I don't think I'd try it with a tree with "real old bark."

And it isn't something you do unless you can put in a lot of time on the tree -- and unless the tree is worth the effort. It's like growing taper into a trunk, lots of growing and pruning then growing and pruning.

_________________
Jim Lewis - lewisjk@alltel.net - Western NC - People, when Columbus discovered this country, it was plumb full of nuts and berries. And I'm right here to tell you the berries are just about all gone. Uncle Dave Macon, old-time country musician

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How do you regrow Branches?

Post  bonsaisr on Fri Jan 15, 2010 8:41 pm

With some species, an alternative is thread grafting. If the tree is prone to grow long whippy shoots, like maples, you can put a new branch right where you want one. I have been successful with trident maple, American red maple, Japanese maple, and crabapple.
Iris

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Re: How do you re-grow branches?

Post  NeilDellinger on Sat Jan 16, 2010 2:51 am

Getting age on branches takes time, but can also be sped up slightly by some wiring techniques. With tridents and others I generally wire and leave on until it bites in somewhat. I remove the wiring then let the tree rest a short time. After a brief rest I rewire in the opposite direction crossing over my previous scar.

Hope this helps, its been good for me so far.

Neil

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Re: How do you re-grow branches?

Post  bonsai monkey on Mon Jan 18, 2010 8:49 am

Thank for your help everyone Very Happy

I've been working on a Field Maple which I've tried to re-grow the branches and this information will certainly help. I will keep you posted on my progress,

Kindest Regards,
Simon

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