Bonsai trees are styled and maintained carefully through wiring. A wire cutter is a great tool in achieving the looks of your bonsai trees. There are two techniques in training a bonsai tree using a wire cutter which are the maintenance pruning and the structural pruning. Using these techniques can help you create beautiful bonsai styles.
Maintenance pruning is where you maintain the existing shape of the bonsai tree that will not impose stress on the plant while the structural pruning is where you carefully train the bonsai tree into its designated shape and design that causes stress to the bonsai tree.
Wiring a bonsai tree is a technique that can be crucial in training and styling a bonsai.
Benefits of Bonsai Shaping Using Wire Cutters
- You can achieve the desired shape and growth or height of a bonsai.
- Promote proper growth and development of your bonsai by eliminating unwanted structures and controlling height and shape.
- It is an effective way to style your bonsai the way you want it to be.
- Display your artistic talent by creating unique bonsai shapes and styles.
- If you’re engaged in a bonsai business, you can gain more customers by offering unique styles of bonsais. It means more profit or revenue for you.
- Ability to showcase your bonsai skills through marketing channels, like social media marketing, video marketing, and word of mouth.
How To Wire A Bonsai Tree
Step #1 – Prepare the Materials
It is important to use the right wire. There are two types of wire used in growing bonsai trees: the anodized aluminum and the annealed copper. The anodized aluminum or the aluminum wire works best for the deciduous type of bonsai.
This type of wire is also recommended for beginners because it is quite flexible. While the annealed copper or the hard copper works best for conifers and pine. In cutting wires to be used, it is appropriate to use wire cutters than using regular scissors to ensure that the cutter wire ends won’t hurt the branches.
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Step #2 – Single Wiring / Double Wiring
The first step is to select the branch or pair of branches that you want to wire. It is advisable not to water the bonsai tree a day before your wiring session because branch that has not been watered for how many days tend to be bent easily.
If you prefer to wire two branches, make sure that it has the same thickness. Make sure that you will only wrap the wire once or twice depending on the thickness to ensure that the branch will stay in place when bent.
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Step #3 – Bending The Wired Branches
When bending the branch downwards, the wire should come from below, when bending the branch upwards, the word should come on top. This technique will secure the wire reducing the risk of splitting the branches.
Step #4 – After Care
Depending on the type of bonsai tree, place it on its designated area whether indoors or outdoors. Fertilize and water the bonsai properly.
It is also advisable to observe the bonsai tree every day to ensure that it follows the direction that you wish for through the supporting wirings.
How To Remove The Wire Using A Wire Cutter
As the bonsai tree grows, the branches grow as well making the wire tighten having a tendency to leave a mark or worst leave a coiling scar. The wire can be removed if the desired shape and position is achieved.
Observe the bonsai tree as it grows. You will need to remove the wires using wire cutter, cut the wires in pieces to ensure that there will be a less chance that the branches will be damaged.
The wire can be removed depending on how the bonsai tree grows rapidly. The wire of some fast-growing type of bonsai that were grown during its growing season can be removed after a month but if the bonsai tree is a slow growing plant then it can take up to 6 months before it can be removed.
Tips In Wire Cutting A Bonsai Tree
- In removing a wire using a wire cutter always start cutting the wires wrapped on the thickest branch. Then gradually move towards the thinner branch and thinner wire.
- The wire cutter to be used should have a stubby nose to avoid damaging the branch when you cut the wire.
- If the wire has been bitten in by the branch you need to use a long nose-type wire cutter to avoid scraping the branch.
- Make sure that the wire is not stuck into the branch as the bonsai tree continues to thicken to avoid long-term damage that it may cause.
- Make sure that before using the wire cutter it is free from rust to avoid contaminating the bonsai tree.
- Make sure that the cutting edges of the wire cutter are sharp enough. Dull wire cutter would require you to exert much effort in gripping it.
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Types of Wire Cutters For Bonsai Growing
- Side cutting wire cutter – Perfect for cutting wires on the sides of the bonsai tree
- Long nose wire cutter – Reaches difficult areas like deep and hidden wires
- Diagonal wire cutter – Helps in cutting hard-to-reach wires
- Flat nose wire cutter – Avoid injury to bonsai trunk, leaves, and other structures because of the flat nose structure
- Slip joint wire cutter – Best for cutting wires at hard joints
- End cutting wire cutter – Suitable to cutting wire ends
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Wire cutters are an essential tool in growing a bonsai tree because it helps in its aesthetic value. It is important to use a designated wire cutter in pruning or in wiring parts to achieve the preferred physical appearance of the bonsai tree. The use of a wire cutter is not only beneficial for wiring some bonsai trees’ parts but it can also be used for pruning purposes to assist the growth of the plant.