Really ugly privet - can I bury it?

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Really ugly privet - can I bury it?

Post  wiregems on Sun Oct 23, 2011 7:28 pm

Hi - I'm new to this forum and very new to bonsai, too. I have a question I don't find an answer to by researching the forum, but if this has already been covered, please direct me to the thread/topic.

I ordered a few bonsai sight-unseen, and learned my lesson, won't be doing that again, and got some fairly nice things and a couple of duds. One is a very ugly privet. It has a horrible s-curve trunk, the lower portion of which is bulbous and pocked marked/pimpled with branch-removal scars. Very obscene looking. It also has wire marks left from the process of producing that horrible curve which I'm assuming will never go away. The top of the trunk, which is about 3/4 inch in diameter, is a table-top chop, but I guess new growth could be encouraged to hide that. My first inclination is to just pitch it and forget it. Didn't pay that much for it and wouldn't even want it in my yard. The only other thing I can think to do with it is bury the darn thing in a very deep pot up to the highest wire mark and leave it alone for a year or so. This would be burying about 8-9 inches of trunk, leaving about 3 inches above the soil line. Will the trunk sprout roots, or will it just rot? If it does sprout roots, at some point it will have to be dug up and a very large portion of the buried trunk will have to be pruned (sawed off) then re-potted. Will it rot then at the cut? Do you have any other suggestions, besides dressing it in a skirt up to the foliage and tying a bow around it or growing some kind of vine up the trunk to cover it completely?

Yes, I know beauty is in the eye of the beholder, but I'm the one who has to behold this thing, and besides, I don't think anyone would view the wire marks as beautiful.

Any ideas will be considered and appreciated. Have a nice Sunday, y'all.

Wiregems

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Ugly Privet

Post  bonsaisr on Sun Oct 23, 2011 9:33 pm

First of all, a lot of the wire marks & pruning scars will fade after a few years.
Your basic idea is a good one, but burying the tree that deep might kill it. Next spring, you want to air layer it at the point of separation. Read up on air layering over the winter & do it in the spring. Show us a picture & the experts will suggest the best spot for the air layer.
As always, find the nearest bonsai club. They can help you with this.
Iris

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ugly privet

Post  wiregems on Sun Oct 23, 2011 9:54 pm

Thanks for the advice. I think I'll just repot it in a larger pot and put it outside someplace sheltered. If it survives the Missouri winter, I'll air layer it.

I appreciate your time in replying.

Wiregems

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Re: Really ugly privet - can I bury it?

Post  lordy on Tue Oct 25, 2011 6:56 pm

Another idea involves burying it, but laying it down to produce a raft style forest. Find a copy of John Naka's "Bonsai Techniques" book 1 (red cover). He goes into a decent explanation of how to do this. With the curved trunk, it sounded as though that tree of yours just might lend itself to this technique.

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ugly privet

Post  wiregems on Sat Oct 29, 2011 8:53 pm

Hadn't thought of that, but that's a really interesting idea. This trunk would lie on its side and provide a striking raft base. Most of it could be left exposed and combined with an interesting rock or two. I'm going to look into that. Thanks!

Carolyn

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Re: Really ugly privet - can I bury it?

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