Bonsai is a potted tree or plant that requires training and pruning so that it can grow to not more than 1 meter or 3 feet tall. Despite being small, bonsai looks like a full-size tree growing in the forest.
Some bonsai trees grow for one hundred years, and they passed this ability from generation to generation. A huge deal of care is a must so that you maintain its good health while growing it in a tiny pot.
Wiring is one of the techniques used in raising and bending the branches of a bonsai.
What is Wiring
Wiring involves attaching the wires to the plant’s branches and trunk to form a desired correct or turn the unnatural curve. Copper and aluminum wires are the most commonly used, though aluminum is much easier to manage and is ideal for beginners.
Bonsai wires have more than ten different levels of thicknesses. Each level should be used in a specific way. It often depends on the hardness and size of the branch. Wrap the bonsai wires on the trunk of your plant and them from the lower to upper branches.
Wiring is one way to produce a more pleasing shape. It is not the way to force the ego of a cultivator on the bonsai. The wires should help in bringing out the real personality and distinctiveness of every tree, never to suppress them.
Put wires on all branches you want to shape before you try bending them. When wiring the whole tree, start working from its trunk all the way to main branches before moving to its secondary branches.
As a golden rule, use wires of 1/3 of the denseness of the twigs you’re wiring. The wire must be dense enough to hold the branches in its new shapes.
Some people are sad for having their bonsai trees entirely wired up. On the other hand, it is part of the disciplining process that is the same with training the kids before they turn into mature adults.
Growers do not look down on their plants. They treat them as friends or children on whom they pour their love and care to help and allow them to grow healthy and strong. Wiring is one way to help a bonsai tree meet its fullest potential.
Wiring is Not Good Sometimes
However, the wiring is applicable only to one small portion of the tree that requires changes. If you leave the wires on for an extended time, they may begin eating into the growing branches and damage the plant.
As a bonsai grower, you must be extra careful to eliminate wiring before it takes place. If you failed to obtain the expected results, you may put some wires on the branches and trunk of your plant once again.
Likewise, the wiring is a difficult method. It takes time to master. Try wiring two branches of the same thickness that is close to one another with just one piece of wire where you find it applicable. After that, wire other branches separately.
Wiring is more effective only when you use the right bonsai and wire tools. Be sure you do it as well or else you will end up hurting your plant.
What are The Best Alternatives to Wiring Bonsai?
There are other techniques which seem much better and more effective than using bonsai wires. If you still choose to wire and wondering if there’s an alternative, then the answer is nothing. No other tool is ideal for wiring a bonsai aside from bonsai wires. If you don’t want to continue with wiring, here are some techniques to try:
In pruning a bonsai tree, you need to use a pair of scissors and some other tools so that you can properly adjust the shape of your plant. Pruning is the best to begin for a young plant. So, consider this shaping technique while your plant is still young.
Pruning a bonsai for the first time needs particular care considering that you will decide for its basic style and shape in the end. When your plant gets older, you can start cutting the branches to attain a better balance. In pruning, you need to consider some factors:
- The plant’s direction
- The length of its branches
If your plant is a full-grown one, pruning will help in maintaining and improving its beauty. Bonsai is a living plant that will grow taller and taller if you do nothing to maintain its short height.
Pruning your bonsai will help you easily control its size. However, the main purpose behind this is not to stop the bonsai’s growth. Instead, pruning is a shaping technique intended for tapping the bonsai’s natural tendency to form a beautiful and pleasing shape.
When and how you should prune the branches differ based on the kind of plant. Proper trimming promotes the normal growth of your bonsai. How? Just let your plant receive much air and sun.
The key to maintaining the health of your bonsai is keeping the root fit. It involves regular repotting. Repotting is the process in which a grower prunes and replant overgrown roots in new soil.
Repotting involves taking your plant from its pot and carefully removing the soil from its roots. Once done, try trimming the roots by about 1/3. When you replant your bonsai, make sure there are no air pockets in the soil.
Prepare the new soil and put it on the used pot. You can also switch from a small pot to a larger one. You can’t just choose any pot. You must consider the shape and color of the best pot to use.
A bonsai relies on a smaller amount of soil placed in the pot for its survival. When the size pot is no longer enough for the roots, the plant will grow slowly. Likewise, it will be harder for the plant to absorb the air and water through the soil.
Repotting is the only solution to this as it will help a lot in increasing the longevity of a bonsai. This video will show you to get started.