Cork oak department improvement – Bonsai Tonight

Wholesome oaks can develop rapidly in spring. When the spring flush hardens off, it’s a superb time to prune.

Cork oak

Cork oak – container by Sara Rayner

I final labored on the tree in August. As a result of it’s grown a lot since then, I anticipated the wire to begin chopping in.

Wire starting to cut in

Wire beginning to minimize in

Wire marks

Wire marks

I discover that it is a good quantity for the wire to chop in. If I’d eliminated the wire earlier, the branches would have misplaced extra of their form. If I’d left it in place longer, the scars can be extra apparent.

I began work by eradicating the entire wire. Subsequent, I reduce the higher branches with the objective of retaining as much as 1/2″ inch of latest development as I wish to maintain the internodes quick. Right here’s the tree after pruning.

After pruning

After pruning

Branch detail

Department element

I left the decrease branches lengthy as I need them to thicken earlier than I scale back them. Cork oaks have sturdy apical dominance and I’ve discovered that the decrease branches don’t thicken when the higher branches develop freely.

I additionally wired a couple of of the branches, however discovered that almost all already had good motion and solely wanted to be lowered. For these branches I utilized man wires. Altogether I used seven of them.

Guy wires

Man wires secured to a wire inserted in a drainage gap

Right here’s the tree after pruning and wiring.

Cork oak - after pruning and wiring

Cork oak – 16″

Right side

Proper aspect

As soon as the brand new buds come out, I’ll take away these I don’t want and let the others develop till fall. (See “Cork oak pruning follow-up” for particulars.) If the highest branches get too sturdy, I’ll scale back or take away them alongside the best way. I plan to prune the tree once more in both fall, winter, or early spring – anytime up till it begins rising once more in spring.

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