Cut-Below-The-Graft Experiment

Grant Hamby

Shohin
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I'm sure this has been done many times, but here's the idea:

I got a couple weird Japanese maple varieties on clearance at a garden center. Both were grafted and both had long whips of the rootstock extending just below the graft.

Last year I cut them below the graft so that the long whip could be the new leader, and the new tree would be straight acer p. (assuming that's the rootstock).

This spring I cut the roots back hard and repotted them into bonsai soil and training containers. Here they are now:

This is the smaller of the two. It's popping buds way down low and in a couple ideal branch locations. I have high hopes for this one as an elegant shohin.
IMG_4221.JPG


The second one is quite a bit larger. This photo was taken right after the repot, so that's why the leaves look less developed. This one will probably need some root grafts, the nebari is very poor below the soil. I don't really have a final design in mind for this one yet.
IMG_4073.JPG


Anyway, I'll try to keep this updated with their progress. Thanks for checking it out!
 

Cadillactaste

Neagari Gal
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Well, as you say...it's been done. What you now have is not the cultivar the tag once claimed. But the root stock...let's hope for tight internodes. Good luck with your project. (Many have trouble cutting back hard. So you are at least over that hurdle.)
~Enjoy your journey.
 

Dav4

Drop Branch Murphy
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Looking good, Grant! Next year, try to get them both in flats or grow boxes with boards screwed to the bottom. Even though you're shooting for small trees, they still have lots of growing to do. You're gonna have fun with these:).
 

Grant Hamby

Shohin
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Looking good, Grant! Next year, try to get them both in flats or grow boxes with boards screwed to the bottom. Even though you're shooting for small trees, they still have lots of growing to do. You're gonna have fun with these:).
Thanks! The smaller one is screwed to a board, it was a better candidate for hard root pruning. I'm excited to see how the scars heal and the taper develops on these, it should be a good learning experience!
 

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