This is all about air layering. So in bonsai why would you want to air Layer a tree and what is air layering I’m going to use this little spruce here To sort of explain what i mean by air Layering so for example this tree is Quite long and skinny and it doesn’t Look very good as a bond side because There’s no taper from here upwards that Would look nice as a bonsai if none of This was here you know it’s got more Proportion to it i could then decide to Air layer from this section of the tree Up and make this piece of this large Tree a tree separate from the bottom Half of the tree this is the tree we’re Going to be earlier in today this tree Is called a ginkgo balopa and i think It’s like one of the oldest species of Tree in the planet there’s no real Leaves on this tree quite yet because The buds haven’t popped open still sort Of early spring and speaking of early Spring early spring is probably the best Time to do air layering as the sap is Just flowing up the tree so where i’ve Decided to do the air layering is right Here this is giving me a lot of foliage And stuff above so in terms of tools all You’re going to really need is a knife
Any knife at all as long as it’s clean And sharp i’m using a grafton knife Which is used for this kind of stuff but You could also use a stanley blade Exacto knife or a scalpel and this Part’s optional but i’m also going to be Using a branch cutter just for cutting The branches off the area we’re going to Be doing this on you can also just use Sagittarius or scissors i’m going to Start by removing this branch which is In the way of where we want to do this Air learning so off that comes I suppose i could remove just this small One here just I could leave it i can leave it it’s Fine so we’re going to start by taking Our knife and make sure it’s super sharp Because you want a clean cut we’re going To start the idea we’re going to do is Create a ring around the trunk in two Places we’re just going to take our Knife and press make sure you hit the Wood you want to go right through the Bark we’re going to go around really Want to make this as clean as possible From what i believe ginkgo biluba air Layers very well i also know apple trees Air layer well i think the hardest air Layer is pine so now i’m going on the Second place here Going around that So i’ve made a ring here and a ring here The whole way around the trunk now we’re
Going to do is take the graft knife and Just peel off the bark between these two Cuts Then you just peel it off of your hand As well should just like unwrap if You’ve made the cuts nice and clean at Each side between the bark and the wood Of the tree there’s a layer called the Cambium layer what we’re going to do is Just scrape away this cambium layer And once you’ve got that done the hard Part is over next thing you want to do Is take some plastic and i’m just going To cut this plastic and the little Strips and i can use this for like Multiple different air layerings I like to use clear plastic because then I can actually see when the air layer is Starting to root i can see the roots Through the bag and i feel like that Kind of works better for me because i Can see them and that way i don’t have To sort of keep opening up the air layer And disturbing the roots anyone can do This as well it’s not it’s not really Complicated earlier and it’s pretty Straightforward it’s just knowing how to Do it and once you’ve got that down it’s It’s really straightforward so i’ve got This piece of plastic now what we’re Going to do is we’re going to wrap this Piece that we’ve cut out of the tree in A ball of sphagnum moss you can use Hormone root and powder and put it
Around the area just to increase the Likelihood that this will root not all Air layerings work some of them do fail For lots of different reasons one could Be rotten didn’t get enough water the Other water that was in the the moss Ball somehow escaped so i’m just using Some hormone written gel i’m going to Paste it around the area this this step Isn’t necessary honestly you can just Wrap it in some sphagnum moss but i like To do this just to increase the chances Of it working I do find that roots tend to form Slightly above where we did the air Layer and so if you put some of the Stuff above it too That’s a good idea you can really take Your time on this there’s no rush don’t Be afraid of the tree being severed from The top the tree will do quite fine the Reason why we keep the tree attached to Itself instead of just cutting it off And sticking it in the soil Is so that water can still make its way Up from the roots to feed the branches But the nutrients go down into new roots Not into the roots of the original tree And the leaves photosynthesize the light All that nutrients and energy and the Carbon it pulls out of the air goes into Making new roots The plastic seems to have blown away so I’m going to be using some aluminium
Bonsai wire just to tie this onto the Tree it doesn’t have to be perfect air Lands don’t really look Sightly until they’re you know taken off The tree and it’s done and dusted you Don’t have to use these either these are Gin pliers for bonsai but you could just Use regular pliers so we’ll just grab The wire here and twist Now you don’t want to twist it too tight But tight enough so that moisture won’t Escape so before the spagnum goes in you Want the moss wet Ring it out a little bit and pack it on Sphagnum moss is actually one of my Favorite things in bonsai because the Moss itself is anti-fungal and Antibacterial so if a tree is sick or The tree is not doing so well i’ll plant The tree and mostly sphagnum moss and That will bring the tree back to health And it also promotes a lot of vigorous Root growth don’t be afraid to add as Much moss because afterwards whenever You take this off and it has roots in it You can reuse the moss that you put on All right look at that I’m just using pieces of scrap wire that I have left over from wire and other Trees always keep wire just tighten it With the gin pliers now you want to try And keep as much moisture that’s in here As possible Okay
And that is our air layering done on This ginkgo balupa i actually cut some Branches in the top too because i felt Like there was too many coming from this Point and another point up here where it Was just going to thicken the trunk too Much in one area it’s called inverse Taper anyways i want to cover this air Layer in in some dark plastic It doesn’t have to be anything fancy i’m Just going to use the black plastic that Comes from like a bun bag All right So you can really just tie this on with A piece of string or anything it’s just Something to cover it i couldn’t find Any string but i do have some raffia Which is a palm leaf and it’s used for Other things in bonsai this airline will Have rooted in here and then we can pat It up so that’s all i’m going to do this Today so yeah that just about wraps it Up on how to air layer your ginkgo Biloba bonsai or any tree really if you Are stuck or confused about certain Species and air layer in them i would Check in the link in the description I’ll leave some sources where you can go And find that species that you’re about To air layer just to see if it is Possible but for the majority of species That’s used in bonsai this method will Work if you have any questions about air Layering or anything bonsai let me know
Down in the comments be sure to leave a Like on this video it helps me out a lot And subscribe i’m gonna try and get out Like one bonsai video a week on this Channel and i’ll see you next time thank You so much for watching [Music] You
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My Bonsai Journey