Trunk airlayer soil mix?

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Trunk airlayer soil mix?

Post  Norma on Thu Mar 26, 2009 6:04 pm

I had the opportunity to get expert help with my first airlayer last spring. The trident had a poor lower trunk and now needs to be separated to repot. Michael Hagedorn suggested I leave a good portion of the 4inch(10cm) wide trunk below the airlayer for stability but I failed to ask about the soil mix to be used. What kind of soil mix would you recommend for these delicate new roots? Fine or regular ?

Thanks ,

Norma

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Re: Trunk airlayer soil mix?

Post  Carolee on Thu Mar 26, 2009 10:32 pm

Excellent question Norma. I wonder if my air layers in the past failed because of my use of soil specifically designed for 'seeding'. I look forward to an answer from someone much more experienced and wise. Shocked

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Soil

Post  jamesransom on Fri Mar 27, 2009 11:22 pm

Hi Norma and Carolee,
I use a open mix to help the roots get air and water quickly and prevent root rot as most of my bonsai are in. But most important is to wire the plant down as young acer roots are britle.

James

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Re: Trunk airlayer soil mix?

Post  JimLewis on Fri Mar 27, 2009 11:26 pm

A mix that stays fairly damp is nice. It will help the rooting if you can use a soil that contains a good amount of long-fiber sphagnum.

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sphagnum

Post  Joe Hatfield on Sat Mar 28, 2009 1:11 pm

Anything I have ever read about air-layering mentioned using Sphagnum. I've seen some decent results using 60%Sphagnum, 20% corse sand, 20%organic mix. Have you already made the air-layer? Is this for when it has completed the process or is this for the air- layer itself?
-joe

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Re: Trunk airlayer soil mix?

Post  Norma on Sun Mar 29, 2009 4:05 am

Hi Joe,

The trident maple airlayer was done last May and since we have such a short growing season I was advised to wait until spring this year to repot. I also did a Japanese crabapple so I'm going to get some practice. I do intend to get some pictures......wish me luck!

Thanks everyone for your suggestions ..... using the sphagnum with the regular soil mix seems sensible. I have sent an email to Michael Hagedorn with the question....it should be interesting to see what he thinks!

Norma

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Re: Trunk airlayer soil mix?

Post  EdMerc on Sun Mar 29, 2009 3:39 pm

Let me preface by saying that I am very much a beginner. That being said, I have made several successful air-layers using nothing but sphagnum. Keep it moist and the roots just grow. I've done this on ficus, crape myrtle and Japanese maples.

Good luck.


Last edited by EdMerc on Sun Mar 29, 2009 10:26 pm; edited 1 time in total

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Re: Trunk airlayer soil mix?

Post  Kev Bailey on Sun Mar 29, 2009 6:57 pm

Hi Norma, the soil that you put around newly separated air layered plants has to be coarse and fairly light in weight as the new roots are very fragile for the first few months. Securing the tree to the pot effectively is also essential, as the slightest movement can tear all the new roots off. For this reason I don't attempt to arrange the roots at the first potting, you can safely leave that until next spring.

I use a mix of high fired cat litter, chipped pine bark, vermiculite, peat etc.

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Re: Trunk airlayer soil mix?

Post  Norma on Mon Mar 30, 2009 8:38 pm

Thank you for all the great advice.

I received a reply from M. Hagedorn about the soil mix. He uses Akadama and pumice for his basic soil mixes. So I will use what I have that is "equivalent"......haydite and Dry Stall(pumice) and milled sphagnum....equal parts ! The soil is very light but quite coarse.

Here is Michael's website......the soil mix is described on page 2.

http://crataegus.wordpress.com/

If the airlayer has not fully produced roots around the trunk, he wants me to treat those areas , apply new sphagnum and leave in original pot. I should be repotting within the next two weeks so will let you know the outcome.

Norma

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Re: Trunk airlayer soil mix?

Post  Carolee on Tue Mar 31, 2009 12:19 am

Ok Norma, I give up. Laughing I went to the website (which I found very interesting, not having this one bookmarked), but I could not find the 'recipe' for the soil. Please give me the instructions for 'dummy' Embarassed . Thanks!

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Re: Trunk airlayer soil mix?

Post  Norma on Tue Mar 31, 2009 4:28 am

I almost missed it too ,Carolee ! Scroll to the bottom of the first page and click on ..Older posts....!

I AM adding the sphagnum moss which wasn't in his mix....but I just think it makes good sense Idea

Norma

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Re: Trunk airlayer soil mix?

Post  Carolee on Tue Mar 31, 2009 7:41 pm

Thanks, Norma. I found it! Very Happy

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