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OceanFire
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Joined: Thu Dec 11, 2008 9:11 pm
Location: Tacoma, WA

Are Spriral Trunks Possible?

Hi,
Can you have two or three trunks spiral around each other without damaging the plant? I just received a Ming Aralia Polyscias bonsai as a gift that has three trunks in the pot (see picture in at Amazon.com under Ming Aralia Bonsai) and was thinking it would be cool to create a spiral (assuming I don't kill the poor thing), but am unsure of how that would affect the growth of the plants themselves. I've been reading two books (The Bonsai Workshop and Bonsai in the Home, as recommended elsewhere on this site), but have not seen it mentioned either way.

Thanks for the input! This site is great for us beginners!

kdodds
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Location: Airmont, NY Zone 6/7

Spiral, as in straight-braided, trunks is not really a bonsai style. Intertwined trunks is something of a style, but very difficult to accomplish properly and something I'd not recommend for a beginner to try.

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OceanFire
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Location: Tacoma, WA

I figured as much :( And really, the more I'm looking at the tree, the less I like the idea - the trunks are so vertical that, although a cool idea, would not be very natural looking, assuming it could be done at all...sigh.....But I'm still excited about trying to shape my very first bonsai! :D

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Gnome
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Location: Western PA USDA Zone 6A

OceanFire,

There is a technique whereby several trunks can be fused to create a thicker specimen in a shorter time frame. Look here:
https://www.helpfulgardener.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=3524
These are not spiral or braided but simply allowed to merge into one another. I have no idea if this species is suitable for this technique though.

Norm

alexinoklahoma
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Location: Central Oklahoma

I have a few Red maples (one-yr old now) that I 'spun around' each other for the first 12" or so of trunk, and they are well-fused now, making for a much thicker caliper and a unique 'twist' to the trunk(s). The bulges will likely grow out over the years, but the thickness will always be there ;-). There's buds all along the trunks so I can chop wherever, fortunately.

Alex

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OceanFire
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Joined: Thu Dec 11, 2008 9:11 pm
Location: Tacoma, WA

Thanks Gnome for the website! I don't suppose Alexinoklahoma has pictures they could post? It seems like an intriguing idea, although I might try it with a different plant than my Aralias (I'm still deciding on what to shape them to)

alexinoklahoma
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Location: Central Oklahoma

https://picasaweb.google.com/AlexInOklahoma/AcerRubrum#

There's a few of the 'twist' at that link...just some quickie pics taken a few months ago.

Alex

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