This is a repost of an previous post I wrote at my old blog site. I decided to repost this article because now when you click on the pictures, they will expand and you can see more of the details. Please let me know if you want to see other older post reposted on the new blog and I’ll be more then happy to do it. Enjoy and Thanks for reading…again… :o)
The other day I was given the task to do some trunk bending on this tree. The tree has nice old bark and very healthy. Perfect for bending. First thing I did was de-candle the tree and pulled some needles.
Here is what the tree looks like after the de-candling and the pulling of needles.
The reason why we’re bending the trunk is because the curves on it are very contrived and boring. You always want to stay way from arch like shapes that looks like a,”C.”
In the future, the tree will be repotted somewhere in this angle. The tilt was done to make the base of the trunk look like it’s coming out of the ground at an angle instead of straight up.
I attached one stainless steel screw to a big root that will be cut off in the future and one to a small scar that hasn’t closed up on the top of the tree.
I tied the screws together with stainless steel wire and proceeded to bend. On heavy bends, stainless steel wire is good to use because it’s very difficult to break. The bend point is about 4 inches in diameter.
This is the tool that I used for the bend. I made two stainless steel loops and attached them to the the screws on the tree. I used this clamp to slowly make the bend. Once the bend was at a position that I liked, I tightened the main wire attaching the two screws and removed the loops and tool.
Here is what the tree looks like after the bend.
After bending the trunk, I then bent the apex forward and to the left to shift the flow in that direction. I then cut off two branches on the right side and jin them. The future plan is to make the entire canopy smaller. The work for this tree is now finished. The starting height of the tree was 21 inches. The final height of the tree is now 13 1/2 inches. The tree went from the large category to the medium category and looks so much more powerful now. Hopefully I’ll get to repot and wire this tree in the future.
Note on Pine wood:
It turns out that if you are bending a branch that is old, it is actually easier to bend then a young branch that is the same size. Assuming that there are no dead wood on the branch of course. Pine wood is relativity soft compare to other woods so in general, they are easy to bend. Also if they start to crack and separate when bending, they can handle more breakage then other trees. A little cut paste and the break or tear will heal right up.
Thanks for reading.
Great questions! The answer is YES. One of the many things I’ve learned here is that any initial styling, you always bend more then you want. Something that big will always spring back slightly. (Or I keep the guy wire on for like 10 years) If I actually wanted the trunk to touch each other, I’d have to bend it beyond that point. A lot of the more raw material that I’ve been working on, I’ve bent everything down more then it needed to be. Great observation. Thanks Sam!
Peter did you bend the trunk a bit more extreme in thinking that after you loosen the wiring that it would “bounce” back a bit?