Corylus avellana Contorta

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Corylus avellana Contorta

Post  RKatzin on Wed Mar 21, 2012 2:43 am

I've always had an attraction for Harry Lauder's Walking Stick, and a strong deterent has always been the price of anything good sized.

Last spring I picked up this one from a nursery that was closing out their stock. The tree was in overall poor health, but I gave a song and a dance for it. I was confident I could nurse it back to good health over the summer, but in spite of my best efforts the tree was only able to hang on.



This spring I repotted the tree and found out why she had such a hard time last summer. It was still in the clay rootball and wrapped in burlap. They had only put some soil in the bottom of the pot and dropped it in. Then topped off the pot with more soil.



We spent a good three hours in the rain blasting and prodding the clay away. I got the roots untangled and gave them a good trim. Then I went after all the unwanted branches and after removing them I potted the tree in a 24x24" cedar box.



Did I say unwanted, soaking in a bucket of willow water and soon into the fines I screen out of the turface.

She's a wild thing, but once reduced to the main trunk and a few branches I think I see my tree, kind of an octopus on it's back. Really all I removed were the sucker branches around the base of the trunk and this is what is left.


I stopped at this point as I pondered whether or not to dock the top of the trunk back to one of the lower branches. I know the leaves can get pretty big and this is my first hazelnut so I don't know how the leaves will reduce. Does anyone know or what do you think, shorter or tall? Thank you, Rick

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Re: Corylus avellana Contorta

Post  drgonzo on Wed Mar 21, 2012 2:55 am

Oh I love Harry Lauders.... unfortunately Eastern filbert blight is an ever present (out my way) and very deadly problem that always keeps me from playing with them. Seems like its worse in the eastern parts of the country but its in Oregon too. I get a little upset when I see these at the box stores around here, as they can already be infected and you won't know it until much later.

If your going to begin work on these as bonsai you owe it to yourself to become acquainted with EFB as these are highly susceptible.
http://www.agf.gov.bc.ca/cropprot/filbertblight.htm

-Jay

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Re: Corylus avellana Contorta

Post  JimLewis on Wed Mar 21, 2012 12:20 pm

IMO (of course) but these make much better conversation pieces than bonsai.

We make trees. These do not look like trees under the best of circumstances.

(but then, I can imagine succulent bonsai, so . . . have at it.)

_________________
Jim Lewis - lewisjk@windstream.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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Re: Corylus avellana Contorta

Post  abcd on Wed Mar 21, 2012 12:55 pm

coryllus avalana is not a tree, but a shrub, therefore , pot life is limited, rebourgeonnement at the base off the trunk , dieing branches at the top .
Pot culture is a difficult thing, his life expectancy : 15 years maximum ( it's my experience )

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Re: Corylus avellana Contorta

Post  RKatzin on Wed Mar 21, 2012 1:15 pm

Thank you for the responses,

Jay, Oregon, I believe, is the only state with a commercial filbert production. Whenever there is blight problems they restrict import of filbert trees from other states.

Jim, I certainly value and respect your opinion. It is certainly not my only 'conversation piece', some trees I enjoy for their sheer oddity. I'm especially a sucker for anything 'contorta'.

This tree has been allowed to grow wild and she's done some crazy twists and turns, one small branch crosses itself four times. What I saw in there was the nice snakey trunkline that I left. The rest of the branches were left for the health of the tree. In a couple of years I will remove them and replace them with small branches that I will control with directional prunning.

It may never be an accepted bonsai, but we'll certainly have something to talk about. Give me a couple of years and I'll bring it up again.

Thanks abcd, I'm not familiar with 'rebourgeonnement', can you say in other words. Too many shrubs are trained as trees to even start down that road, but azalea, barberry, cotoneaster, buxus off the top of my head. I'll be lucky to make another fifteen years myself, so we'll have a good run. Thanks, Rick

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Re: Corylus avellana Contorta

Post  drgonzo on Wed Mar 21, 2012 1:30 pm

abcd wrote:rebourgeonnement at the base off the trunk

I believe this refers to suckering.

Not as much of a problem with trees that aren't grafts which this (if it was nursery stock) probably is.

An now that you mention it I remember reading somewhere(don't ask me to remember) that Harry Lauders were banned for import or sale in oregon a few years ago (2004) because of their EFB issues. Don't know if thats still the case but as you have production Filbert orchards in your state a preventative Copper Oxychloride at bud break might not be a bad idea. Then once or twice in the summer, just keep an eye on her.
-Jay

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Re: Corylus avellana Contorta

Post  RKatzin on Wed Mar 21, 2012 1:43 pm

Thanks Jay, yes I could see that and that is what I cut off is the suckers from the base. I don't see any evidence of a graft.

I believe all filberts were banned in '04 and it happens periodically. They just lifted a two year ban, but these do not prohibit the sale of filberts within the state, just the import from out of state. Rick

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Re: Corylus avellana Contorta

Post  bucknbonsai on Wed Mar 21, 2012 4:40 pm

ive seen these grafted and as airlayers or cuttings in the same lot at big box stores like lowes etc.., its lucky if you can find non grafted ones. Yours is likely on its own roots as the suckers are not contorted. For landscaping purposes I only buy ones that are on their own roots so that as they spread everything is contorted and you dont have to continually prune back the strait shoots. a friend of mine has one about 12 years old that is now almost a 3 foot diameter trunk (hundreds of 4" thick shoots have all fused together) and the bush itself is a 15foot diameter sphere basically.

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Re: Corylus avellana Contorta

Post  Smithy on Wed Mar 21, 2012 9:09 pm

Hi Rick , I have one of these that i just put into a pot this year .Ive had it in a box for two years growing some roots and thickening the bottom branches. Now to grow the rest. I don't see any reason why it can't be made to look like a tree and not just a conversation piece. Im not sure how well the leaves reduce but i'm not too bothered as i prefer it as a winter display. Good luck with yours.


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Re: Corylus avellana Contorta

Post  RKatzin on Wed Mar 21, 2012 9:45 pm

Hi Smithy, I knew someone out there would like my twisted sister! HaHa! Wow! You really shoe-horned it in there. Did you have to grease her up first? Just kidding, but it does look tight in that pot and when it throws out some branches, I don't know, but I'd think it's going to swallow that pot.

Your mix looks just like mine,too. Calcined clay (turface for mine)decomp bark and compost.

Buck, thanks for the input, I think I catch your meaning, there's a 'not' in there that doesn't belong.

I think what intrigues me most is the desire, the wanting to make some sense of the helter-skelter, create a calm within the sea of madness (yes, I'm a Libra) that arises when these are left to run. Thanks for the insights folks, Rick

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Re: Corylus avellana Contorta

Post  Smithy on Wed Mar 21, 2012 10:05 pm

Hi Rick , haha yes i did shoehorn it in. It was the biggest pot i had which i got in an auction last year. They always seem big enough when you haven't got the tree with you.My mix is calcined clay , bark pumice and lapillo.
Ive always loved them like you so i couldn't pass on digging this up and having a go with it.

I grew this one from a whip for the front garden.

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Re: Corylus avellana Contorta

Post  bucknbonsai on Thu Mar 22, 2012 3:11 am

sorry rick, i dont know why i wrote "not" in my last post. yours is clearly on its own roots

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Re: Corylus avellana Contorta

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