How to Create Bonsai from Root Cuttings

Multiply your bonsai collection at repotting time by propagating root cuttings. In the second part of creating bonsai from root cuttings, I pot the established cuttings of Chinese Elm on. Now is the time to make some initial choices for the potential future shape of the bonsai trees.

Previously we created the cuttings and discussed suitable species for creating bonsai from root cuttings.

How to create bonsai from root cuttings here’s some I planted recently I planted these two one year ago this one is two years old a bit later I’d like your opinions on what to do with this feel them I’m Darrin if you’re new to my channel my videos are all about sharing my journey in the world of bonsai along the way I’ll be sharing some of the approaches and information that I gather as I go so if that sounds like something you’re into please consider subscribing I covered the process of taking and planting root cuttings in a previous video so if you’ve not seen that check it out the links in the description below so where the root cutting was severed there is usually going to be a wound and oftentimes the wound dies back a bit and so what we need to do now is clean up that wound and then he died back so that it can heal and grow with the best quality transition from the root to the stem as we can possibly achieve I’m going to come in with a sharp knife to dislodge some of this old bark that’s starting to pull away I don’t want to damage any of the stems the buds all my fingers and so anytime that I see green or white tissue such as that I know that I’ve gone far enough so I’ve tried to remove this little tissue as I can’t the less living tissue that I take away the better really now I’ve got three pieces of live growth coming from this point I need to take out this center chunk of dead wood in order to do that I’m going to use my cutters and I have to sacrifice one of these secondary pieces of growth I’m just going to take off the top one here gonna do my best to maintain the other two shaving our way with small bites of the cutters thing now that I’ve cut that as cleanly as I possibly can I’m going to use a small piece of cut paste to seal this wound but petroleum jelly will also do a sufficient job in the case of petroleum jelly smear a thin layer on covering all open areas of the wound or if you if you’ve got cut paste to hand again working the cut paste onto all of those freshly cut areas okay I’m happy with that this one’s very much easier that’s looking nice same again a little bit of green sealer jobs are Gooden in the next few days I’m going to need to report this feel them Ole Miss minor let me know in the comments which pot you think would work best we’ve got pot one pot too and pot three the other thought that I had was instead of keeping it upright to turn it flat on its side and create quite an interesting raft composition I can’t turn it all the way because the soils gonna fall out but hopefully you can sort of get a feel for what it might look like so I’d love to know your thoughts if you could write me a comment down below put one two or three raft or upright that would be hugely appreciated now to get some good growth like we saw on the other big one and I’ll put them into bigger containers Adamo needs to grow rampant they’ve got a bit of character to the bark and I’m worried that if they grow bananas like that two year old one they’ll lose some of that character and I think we can make some smaller trees are these ones using the ancient technique of tickling the roots to get the soil out hand it down from generations of generation in the root system of this one we’ve got a bit of a choice to make we’ve got several roots coming from this point here and then we’ve got this big thicker root that’s coming from the trunk about a third of the way up now we could choose to make a feature out of that or we can cut it off and create a more traditional nebari at this level because we’ve got numerous roots coming from this point I’m gonna go for the more traditional approach so we’re gonna come in with my cutter that’s reserved for roots cut that one off nice and flush if we wanted to we could plant this and we’d have another root cutting I’ve also cut that strong central root out because we’ve got quite a lot of nicer roots forming a good nebari so ever many of that one as well because these are only one-year-old cuttings I better not be too harsh with the root pruning all that’s left to do now is to put it up so I’ve got a little bit of soil at the bottom and now I’m going to try and position this root cutting in a way that the roots are kind of quite nicely distributed as as good as I can get it I’m gonna hover with the cutting at this level then I slowly fill until we’re at the nebari level and what will be the future nebari is nice and buried I’m not going to bury it too deeply because being a noun we run the risk of it producing more roots further up the trunk and then we’ll get invest April but I do need to bury enough such that the tree is supported with the chopstick I’m just gonna have to make sure that the soil it’s worked in between the roots and supporting those roots because this is because this is used soil and it hasn’t dried out yet it doesn’t pour quite as well normally I wouldn’t reuse soil but I’ve got lots of it lying around at the moment of being just a root cutting that’s ready to be watered in and if it still seems a bit wobbly I’ll use a bit of bamboo and tight to a bit of bamboo as a stake just until it firms up in its pot because this one’s pretty big I don’t actually want it to get any bigger having a drastic pruning this one and then I’ll come in and try and sort out the roots I’m just gonna roughly chop it at a convenient location for the time being there we go that was drastic so this one’s been untouched for two years hence all that growth so I can be a lot more drastic with the roots of this one I’m probably gonna need to be but it’s firmly wedged in that edges let’s give it a try [Applause] looks like we’ve got plenty more root cuttings to be had here right let’s see what we’ve got in terms of nebari none shall we nice and steady that’s around the surface roots now it’s a case of trying to make sense of this so we’ve got a root that’s coming from down here and it’s going all the way back up here so if I cut that on out the way that’s better this root here is coming from the solid and pointing up so let’s get rid of that one thicker pieces down here those out it’s a very thick chunks here I have to deal with those soon let’s just make a bit more sense of what we’ve got that’s torn when I cut it out so let’s cut this starts we’ve got read here then start somewhere around here and all the way around the outside definitely a circling route this one I’m not gonna try and yank it out strategically try and cut it away where I can see what I’m cutting now I know that this tree was very healthy because of all the fertilizer it received and growing that it did I can quite comfortably come in remove that large root that large root triangular fall for this soil out now and then we’ll wash the roots off and have a good look right and I get cleaned up get this washed and then we’ll come in and have a closer look here we are nice and clean so let’s see about making some sense of this this lot so here we’ve got this big thick root comes down and then back on itself one roots coming back on themselves so see about cutting it a bit make a bit of space first under here we’ve got like a little roots going straight down don’t want that one I’ve also got another one going straight down okay this is what I love about root cuttings you can get some absolutely crazy shapes that you would never think to create otherwise never in a million years would I have imagined to create something like this now the question is do we look to maximize the crazy or do we turn it into a bonsai I’m gonna leave the crazy roots as they are I’m gonna get it planted in with some fresh soil I’m gonna let this one grow it’s gonna make sure that we filled in the gaps among those roots nice helping of moss keep those roots nice and healthy where they’ve been partially exposed right I’ll get this watered in and I’ll tell you about the plan moving forward so I feel that pretty major operation I’m obviously going to need to give it some time to recover I’m probably going to give out a full season of recovery time I’ll Water it fertilize quite heavily once it shows signs of growth if you’d like to see more about how I’ll develop this weird ant-like tree make sure you hit that subscribe button I’ll be sure to do updates

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