wordswork
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Hawaiian Umbrella tree

Hello.

I'm hoping someone can help. My Schefflera is 20 years old and healthy, lives indoors year round, doesn't get too much water and - during (Canadian) winter months - sits under grow lights 10 hours/day.

It's approximately 4 & 1/2 feet tall (not exactly 'Bonsai').

I have recently seen quite tall (8 - 10 foot) versions of this same plant (in shopping malls) with the roots wrapped around the trunk; almost, but not quite, Banyan style. I like the appearance of these, particularly as the roots seem to support the trunk (which is by no means sturdy, otherwise).

I have repotted my own tree several times and noted the roots as quite long with a tendency to grow in a circular direction along the perimeter of the pot (below the soil).

Can anyone tell me please how I might train the roots upward, out of the earth? Without killing my tree?

Thanks and regards,
Rose Anne

The Helpful Gardener
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Nope, Rose; wrong way! Train your soil down! :lol:

Really, just remove a inch (or 6) of soil and repot higher. Gradually
you can expose as much root as you like, and move into a shallower container at the same time if you'd like. Just that easy! :D

HG

wordswork
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Hawaiian Umbrella tree

Thanks, HG.

It sounds like a good plan, and I appreciate your advice.

As the root is increasingly bared, at what point can I safely manipulate it and twine it around the stalk of the plant?

Cheers,
Rose Anne

The Helpful Gardener
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Hmmm...got to be careful there as plants can actually strangle themselves. FIcus will just drop new air roots to deal with that, but a schefflera willjust die...

I also started new air roots on my schefflera bonsai by scarring the bark where I wanted new roots and packing sphagnum up around those sections, so as I exposed areas I made sure that I got roots where I wanted them. The top is needing work but getting better, and the roots are great!

Scott

wordswork
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Hawaiian Umbrella tree

Spagnum? What is it? Some kind of moisture-retention medium?

And if you're ever in Calgary, Scott, I could (obviously) use some help.

Not wanting to lose this plant, I will - of course - be careful (and continue researching/looking for answers and guidance).

Thanks very much for your input.

Regards,
Rose Anne

opabinia51
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Location: Victoria, BC

Sphagnum is a type of moss. You will most likely find it in a local nursery. But, seeing that you live in Calgary; you might try looking around a local stand of trees (outside the city).

Good Luck!!

The Helpful Gardener
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Peat being such a big industry up there I'm suprised you hadn't heard of it, but it's the living phase of peat; a moss that in it's unmilled form makes a lovely rooting medium when kept damp...
Last edited by The Helpful Gardener on Mon Nov 21, 2005 4:40 pm, edited 1 time in total.

wordswork
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Joined: Sun Nov 13, 2005 3:47 pm

Hawaiian Umbrella tree

Which just shows how little I know about growing things.

Thanks VERY much for the information and pointers, Scott.

Cheers,
Rose Anne

The Helpful Gardener
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Posts: 7492
Joined: Mon Feb 09, 2004 9:17 pm
Location: Colchester, CT

It's why we're here; tell the friends and family...

Scott



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