How To Wire A Bonsai Tree

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Part of what makes bonsai trees so interesting is their interesting shape as they grow. But interesting traditional styles, such as Shakan (ensemble) and Kengai (cascade), don’t just happen naturally. It is the result of years of care and guidance.

How To Wire A Bonsai Tree

How To Wire A Bonsai Tree

Wiring is one of the key elements in achieving this amazing shape. By applying wire at various stages throughout the bonsai’s life, we can guide new growth to create the desired aesthetic element of the tree.

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While not a prerequisite, wiring is an important part of managing the appearance of your tree. You can keep your bonsai small and prune yourself but with less control over the direction it grows. Depending on your end goal, that’s fine! But to really reap the rewards of creative bonsai art, we recommend trying wire. (We promise, it’s not scary!)

Wiring usually begins when a young bonsai develops an established root system. That’s because smaller trees still have a lot to do and are flexible enough to bend without breaking.

If you start wiring when your tree is older, the trunk will be denser and less flexible. This can make it difficult to achieve the shape you want. Another reason to start early is to avoid damaging the sensitive bark of some tree species that recover more slowly with age.

When choosing your wire, you have two main materials to choose from: copper and aluminum. Both types of wire have their advantages and disadvantages. Copper is stronger than aluminum; Its durability means it stays in place better, but it needs a watchful eye, as it can dig in and cause the wire to bite more easily.

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We recommend starting with aluminum, which is more flexible and forgiving. Aluminum bonsai wire is a little less stable than copper, but you risk less damage in the long run if you loosen it and leave it too long.

Bonsai Pro Tip: Regardless of the material you choose, use wire about ⅓ the diameter of the branch or trunk you’re connecting.

When deciding where to apply the wire, it helps to have an image of the end result in your mind. Apply the wire to any part of the tree that you want to shape in a new direction. This can mean wrapping the entire sample or only certain branches. We recommend double wiring whenever possible; This involves wrapping two branches of the same size together to increase stability and reduce the risk of breakage.

How To Wire A Bonsai Tree

Once you have completely applied your thread, the fun begins! Hold the outside of the branch (aka the side facing the direction you want it to bend) and apply pressure to the inside of the branch to gently bend and secure it.

Copper Wire Bonsai Tree By Ken Editorial Stock Photo

Once you’re done, give your tree some shade and fertilize as you normally would. Watch your tree carefully, and remove it as soon as it begins to exceed the wire. This is especially important for deciduous trees, which branches right before the beginning of the growing season. If the wire is left in for too long, it can cause wire bite, which can weaken or scar the bark of your tree.

Once you have determined when to remove the thread, do not try to save a penny by unwinding it. Your tree is healing and you need sweetness. Attempting to replace the coil without cutting increases your risk of choking or damaging a vulnerable limb.

Instead, cut the wire along each coil with a wire cutter (a special bonsai tool can make the process easier). If you have some wire bites (don’t worry, it happens!), carefully peel the wire away with pliers until you have made enough space to cut without scratching your tree.

Do you have more questions about how to wire bonsai trees? Leave your request in the comments below! Bonsai With Us!

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Bonsai Resource Center is here to help you learn the best bonsai tree care and give you the tools you need to keep your tree healthy and strong. Explore our other articles, visit our online store, and connect with other bonsai enthusiasts in our Facebook group to learn everything you need to know about this exciting hobby! You water the tree. You cut and cut it. You report as needed. You successfully brought your bonsai back from the dead sea!

So…now what? Your bonsai is not like the pictures or movies you’ve seen that show bonsai trees as background images.

You have developed a basic reposting and cutting system, but you are not sure how to use the form elements you read on.

How To Wire A Bonsai Tree

Then, while talking to a friend who has been working with bonsai for a long time, he throws around the phrase “wire training” and acts as if you know what he means.

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To save face, you nod along as he discusses the pros and cons of thread selection and try to make a mental note of everything you should watch after your coffee date.

And now, here you are! Confused and concerned, but ready to take the next step with your bonsai. I mean, after all, you’ve been through a few years now. It’s time for your bonsai to start looking like you see in the picture.

Train your bonsai tree wire as the true artist in this plant work shows. The important thing to remember is that wire training is very important in the successful growth of your bonsai tree.

For clarification, the basic concept behind wire training for bonsai trees is to use wire to shape the branches into the desired growth pattern. Now that we’re all talking about the same thing, it’s time to dig into some of the finer details that will get you headed in the right direction with your bonsai.

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The single thread approach is when you use only one thread for a branch. This allows you to form individual branches that are unique to each other.

The double wire approach is when you use a single wire to train on nearby branches. This creates uniformity with the branch and helps with stability as the branch grows.

It is often said that caring for your bonsai tree is a never-ending journey. In fact, this is one of the reasons why many people choose to adopt this gardening lifestyle. Cathartic to constantly cultivate your tree. With this journey in mind, there are two important factors to remember when you embark on this next stage of the journey.

How To Wire A Bonsai Tree

This is true in general bonsai care and well-being, but pruning is very important before and during the training period. Only with active pruning will the branches be able to grow properly following the branching pattern.

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Only use wire training when your bonsai is healthy. If your bonsai is showing signs of distress, focus your time on nurturing the plant for optimal health. The formation of unhealthy plants will be more harmful in general.

While there are no hard and fast rules when it comes to starting wire training, the generally accepted timeframe is around three to five years. Regardless of the length of time, you want to make sure that you don’t start the wire training until after the roots of the tree are fully established and the trunk will start to grow.

Just like if you try to start wire training your bonsai that is in poor health, if you try to start the wire training process too early, the plant will not be strong enough to take and maintain the shape given by the wire training. .

The second question to ask here is: at what age should you start your bonsai wire training?

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This is when you want to refer to the type of tree you have because this will greatly affect when you start annual wire training.

For deciduous trees, you want to start wire training in early spring. This should happen before new buds appear on the branch. This is because this will allow you to see the branch clearly without obstacles. This time of year will also give you better access to branches when you need to insert and manipulate wires.

For conifers, you want to start the wire formation process in late fall or early winter. Since plant development is cyclical, branches and branches are not yet complete. However, at this time of year the tree sap on the branches is at its lowest, which will help when you start forming the thread.

How To Wire A Bonsai Tree

If you have questions about the type of tree you have, be sure to check out our article: How to identify a bonsai tree.

Beadnova Bonsai Tree Wire 33 Feet Green Aluminum Wire Bonsai Tree Training Wire For Indoor And Outdoor Bonsai Plant (green, 1mm, 30m)

Another important note about timing is that you are better off waiting until you have just changed your bonsai

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