Arakawa woes(Thanks UPS)

raydomz

Shohin
Messages
270
Reaction score
29
Location
Detroit, MI
Let me just preface by saying that I have not had any UPS problems until now..

I ordered a double trunk Arakawa from Marc over at the growing grounds(after all of this, DO NOT recommend) last week and today I came home hoping to see my box sitting on the porch. Well there it was, the top a little pushed in buy nothing to be concerned about I thought. So I proceeded to open the box and my first cause for alarm was the sound of ceramic on ceramic, not good.
I pulled the tree out delicately to find that the pot was destroyed(luckily the pieces were held together by the plastic wrap placed around the base for shipping...first problem..the second is what I'm worried about..
The next thing I notice is that the top 3-4" of the apex is split(remember the pushed in box top I mentioned?). Maybe about an inch deep, and just about right down the center from where the limb juts out. *edit* I should probably mention the part that snapped is about 3/4" in diameter.


I apologize for the crap pictures, it was getting dark and I was a little frantic trying to think of how to save this branch :confused:
So, here is my question:
The break looked like it was pretty fresh, so my immediate plan of action was to grab some wire and sealant. I pulled the branch back in to place and tied it across with wire, very tightly, no movement remained. I then generously applied sealant along the remaining crack. To be honest I was so freaked out about losing the apex that I didn't stop to think. I have not had to do this sort of repair before, I have only read about it. I am wondering what my chances are of it being saved?
The leaves showed no sign of distress, and there was quite a lot of wood still holding it on. I am just concerned, even if it makes it, will the wood ever re-join?

Thanks in advance for any help and sorry for the long read!
(I will get some more pictures up tomorrow showing my repair job if it helps).
 
Last edited:

discusmike

Omono
Messages
1,375
Reaction score
461
Location
elkton,MD
USDA Zone
7a
If it makes it,the wound should heal,but you might get a knob there,but since its a cork bark,this might not be a issue,ive had pretty good results wrapping the area with raffia then wiring,man i really feel for ya,i always worry about this scenario when ordering online.
 

raydomz

Shohin
Messages
270
Reaction score
29
Location
Detroit, MI
From what I've read the inner wood will never rejoin, the healed cambium will be what is holding the branch on.
I am considering putting a spot of glue in to the break and then wiring/sealing it back up and hoping for the best.
 

Roo

Seed
Messages
2
Reaction score
0
It was probably shipped as an insured package. If so you might be able to make a claim to ups for the broken pot if nothing else just keep the crushed box as evidence
 

Smoke

Ignore-Amus
Messages
11,571
Reaction score
19,805
Location
Fresno, CA
USDA Zone
9
I wouldn't have wasted the time trying to fix it anyway. The bulb above the crack is not worth the trouble. I would have just eased up the branch in the lower left of the picture and then just fed the hell out of it and just created a better non-bulbous apex.

When the tree deals you lemons, try to make some lemonade, it serves no purpose to try and put the rinds back on....
 

Brian Van Fleet

Pretty Fly for a Bonsai Guy
Messages
11,821
Reaction score
32,301
Location
B’ham, AL
USDA Zone
8A
Fixing a break with cut paste is like packing a wound; it prevents the cambium layer from rolling back over. The broken wood is dead and will not fuse back together, the best you can do is push the fibers back together and get new tissue growing over the break until enough new layers pile over it. Mike mentioned raffia, which is effective for this type of repair, but be aware that the break will probably always be a problem area, fragile and weaker in growth.

If it was mine, I'd repair it, and also train a new branch to replace it over the next year or two.

That's a bummer. How was it packed for shipping?
 

mcpesq817

Omono
Messages
1,809
Reaction score
479
Location
VA
USDA Zone
7
That's a bummer. How was it packed for shipping?

I think he packs his trees by wiring the tree to the bottom of the box, with no packing material at all surrounding the tree (at least he used to do that). When I questioned him on his packing methods, he replied that he's shipped that way for many years without any problems. I had a feeling that packaging that way would lead to trouble. Sure, nobody likes removing packing peanuts or any other fillers, but it helps ensure that stuff like this does not happen.
 

sdhm3

Seedling
Messages
21
Reaction score
0
Location
stony point ny
I bought two trees from there two years ago and both pots were broken on arrival, so I feel your pain
 

Bill S

Masterpiece
Messages
2,494
Reaction score
20
Location
Western Massachusetts
USDA Zone
5a
My observation is that we now see 2 people that have had the same experiance, same vendor, bad packing practice, when you ship something like this you about have to expect that someone will at some point either toss it or punt it, better packaging is needed. Second is you probaly should have made the claim right away for damaged goods and sent the whole thing back. I dont think that if filled with peanuts you would have had a different outcome.
 

Mike423

Shohin
Messages
357
Reaction score
8
Location
Chicago
USDA Zone
5
I agree the tree should have had adequate packaging to keep the tree from shifting around or from percussion type impacts from affecting the tree or pot.

If you do super glue it I recommend not using the liquid type like crazy glue as its messy and easy to get some where its not wanted leaving a while crusty appearance. It might also be a good idea to place a fine wood screw in an appropriate location to secure the wound more adequately in place and help make it sturdier in the situation its rattled from being knocked over etc.. and help prevent a re-braking.
 

davetree

Omono
Messages
1,529
Reaction score
687
Location
St. Paul Minnesota
USDA Zone
4
I don't think that packing was the issue here. Raydomz said that the tree was fastened to a base in the box. That is how I received a Japanese maple from the same vendor, and it was well packed. The culprit is UPS and their handling of the package. That is why you insure trees shipped in the mail.
 

raydomz

Shohin
Messages
270
Reaction score
29
Location
Detroit, MI
I apologize for neglecting to get back to this..I'll try and answer any questions that were asked.

As for the packing..Yes the tree was fastened to the bottom of the box with wire. The pot was wrapped with a couple layers of plastic to keep the soil wet(I was happy about this). Aside from that, I think that was it for packing. No peanuts, no paper, no bubblewrap. But as davetree pointed out I don't think had there been anymore packing material that the tree would have come any different. The top of the box was smashed in. Oddly enough that was the same place the the "handle with care, fragile" sticker resided.
Lesson learned, get proper insurance, buy local.

As for the tree..
I removed what I could of the cut paste. I purchased some raffia..and I went to town.
First I used a little drop of superglue to hold it in place, then wrapped the whole limb with raffia as tight as I possibly could. Lastly I put a piece of wire across where the break was, just in case.
At this point it may be a lost cause, all I can really do is wait and hope for the fall to come and for the top to be in recovery. There are a lot of close branches that could be potential apex's in the event of die back so I guess I can't be too worried.
I've attached a picture of the tree as it is now. As you can see this fall I'm going to have to give it it's first styling. I plan on moving it to a wood box for the winter(root protection) and then in the fall give it a proper re-pot. I'll keep you guys posted on the progress of the broken limb, and also get some better pictures up as soon as the leaves drop.
 

raydomz

Shohin
Messages
270
Reaction score
29
Location
Detroit, MI
I bought two trees from there two years ago and both pots were broken on arrival, so I feel your pain

Sorry to hear that, hopefully the trees made it alright otherwise.

"sorry man, I dont cover pots, clay ones. Cant do."
In response to my questions about my broken pot.
 

wlambeth

Mame
Messages
239
Reaction score
141
If you haven't already done so you should file a claim with UPS for the reduced value of the tree and a new pot.
They did the same thing to a Hinoki cypress a few years ago; broken pot, pushed in box top, and top third of tree snapped in half.
I was heart broken
 

Bill S

Masterpiece
Messages
2,494
Reaction score
20
Location
Western Massachusetts
USDA Zone
5a
Have to disagree, on there was adequate protection, the top should not have been able to crush down to the tree, there are ways to do this. Sounds like the shipper expects breakage based on the comment. As I said before you have to expect rough handeling, the fragile sticker is a target, worse with the USPO, a fragile sticker is a big kick me sign.
 

rockm

Imperial Masterpiece
Messages
9,684
Reaction score
12,403
Location
Fairfax Va.
USDA Zone
7
It is the seller's fault. The tree was packed improperly. There are ways, beyond simply fastening the bottom of the pot to the box, to secure the tree.

I've had huge pre-bonsai shipped to me that arrived undamaged. One was shipped in a cardboard refrigerator shipping) box. All those trees had a wooden frame built within the shipping box to prevent it from being crushed. The pot (plastic pot only--ceramic pot should be shipped separately) was screwed to the support beams on the bottom. Didn't matter if the tree was shipped upside down.

Good luck getting a pound of flesh from the shipping company...
 

JudyB

Queen of the Nuts
Messages
12,746
Reaction score
19,313
Location
South East of Cols. OH
USDA Zone
6a
I have to agree with the rest, that it's the sellers fault. Yes the shipper damaged the box, but it shouldn't have resulted in that much damage. I've gotten numerous trees shipped to me, (I'm in bonsai limbo land, no local nurserys...) and not one has been damaged, even if the box was dinged. Some of my large shipped bonsai took me more than an hour to unpack. One came in double styro box in box, that appeared to be molded by carving to fit the tree perfectly. Most if not all have peanuts, (yes a royal pain, but I recycle them) and some have structural stakes or bamboo poles to keep the box sound. Even ebayers do better than tiewrapping to the bottom in most cases. I would suggest that you speak to the company owner again, and let him have another chance to make this right. After all, all he can do is say no, yes? You'll be a better consumer to do it, and I wouldn't hesitate to let him know that we in the bonsai community are following this story with interest. I've looked at his website for things, but now am wondering if I should delete it off my bookmarks....
 

tmmason10

Omono
Messages
1,836
Reaction score
78
Location
North Attleboro, MA
USDA Zone
6b
When you are shipping trees of this caliber, you would think that it would be packaged better. Totally unfair to the buyer and you should absolutely plead your case with the seller.
 

Similar threads

Top Bottom