Fusing Schefflera?

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#1
Hey all,



I bought a big cluster of what are probably Schefflera cuttings in one pot. I had planned on fusing them together, but after shooting Jerry Meislik an e-mail he said they don't tend to fuse, but stay seperate instead. My hope is that since they are still quite small and not yet woody, they will grow together. If this doesn't work, I've got tons of cuttings to play with.

Before:



After:




Thoughts?



Ryan
 
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HELL
#2
I would have to say, I have seen what has appeared to be the fusing of trunks before... but on very old trees... usually in the case of a banyon, where the ariel roots have grown over another branch and have to appear as if fused. Not sure if it actually was, or just grown around it... I would have to say that Jerry is right.
If you haven't already check out FUKUBONSAI.COM might give you some ideas...
 
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Albany, Oregon
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#3
I work for a garden center and I happened upon an outcast schefflera pot with three little guys in it. I was actually wondering the same thing, or if it's just a matter of aerial roots coming down and apearing as though the trunk is larger. I've read through fuku and I didn't see anything that pertained to this.
 
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north-central Indiana, USA
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#4
Jerry has a lot of experience with tropicals, and scheffs are a species he particularly likes, so he's familiar with them.

Ficus, on the other hand, often do fuse pretty readily, at least some species.

Get a Schefflera group planting going, let it throw a bunch of aerials, and in 5 years you'll probably have what looks like one spreading tree! :D
 
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Guelph, On, Canada
#5
I've been growing my scheff for around 10 years now, no fusion. I bound things tight as you have and everyhing kind of mushed together but no fussion. One thing I found that worked to help create interest is weaving the separate trunks. I rooted a bunch of cuttings then placing them at various points within the trees height, wrapped everthing in saran, and burried the tree up to the top cutting and left it for 2 years, or more. Feed, water and plenty of light. As you expose the roots they tighten up and add interest to the trunk.

My concern would be if you start with with a bundle of straight trunks in 2 to 3 years you'll have a slightly larger bundle of straight trunks. You need a plan for adding some movement. One of the great things about the Scheff is that it's very forgiving, and almost impossible to kill (well you really have to be trying). If you cut the trees you have now at various heights, wait for some shoots to form, then turn the shoots inward so they pass through the centre of the main bundle of trunks, it can help weave the whole thing together.
 
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#6
Thanks for the replies everyone!

My hope is that since these are young they will grow together and eventually fuse. I've got them in a greenhouse with a humidifier going to hopefully produce some aerial roots that I can maybe do something with. Trust me, I'm not doubting Jerry. I just want to challenge his belief that they don't fuse. He is, most likely, correct though. Like always :)
 
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#7
hey, there is nothing wrong with trying new things... thinking outside of the box is a good thing, if not you are just reproducing the bonsai's that everyone else created...
 
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#8
... I'm not doubting Jerry. I just want to challenge his belief that they don't fuse. He is, most likely, correct though. Like always :)
I think I know Jerry enough to safely say that he would applaud you for testing the boundaries. :) He's been quite encouraging to some of us on another forum who are pushing the limits on serissa in winter, and he himself is quite the one for testing the "received wisdom" for oneself.
 
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#9
Hi everybody, Ryan, like everybody said, they won't fuse. But it will still look good though. You're heading in the right direction. Here are some of mine I started just like this about 15 years ago.
Si
 

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Los Angeles (Altadena), CA
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#10
Here are some of mine I started just like this about 15 years ago.
Si
How come that my Schefflera never grows those aerial roots? I have a nice clump, they grow very well, but no aerial roots.
I suspect that it has to do with the moisture in the air. Here in Pasadena, the air is much drier than in the beach communities.

I noticed that the ficus trees on the streets of West Los Angeles all have aerial roots, but the ones in Pasadena never. West LA is closer to the ocean, so that is probably the answer.
 
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#12
Hi Joesdes3: they were made of multiple cuttings put together. Just like what Ryan is doing now. They all get started like this, especially in regular commercial nurseries. But as you can see, what you will get is a clump style tree instead of a single big trunk design.

Hi Atilla: I get very few aerial roots too. My area is not humid either, just like your Pasadena area. What you see here is actually regular roots that were once below ground. But I now have a small greenhouse which will help the trees to put out aerial roots. That's the final step in completing the design. Maybe one or two more years and these will be full of aerial roots. Then they will be ready for a nice pot.
 
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Palatine, Illinois
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#13
The roots do not usually develop fully here in Chicago since humid days in the summer months are few and far between. I've heard that if you put your tree in an aquarium (elavate your tree) with some water underneath this will increase the humidity. In the winter I put my Scheffleras by a south window with a tray filled with water with a seedling heating mat underneath, which causes the humidity level to increase. This sometimes causes the tree to send out arial roots but nothing significant. I do this because my house get very dry in the winter and this can be bad for tropicals.
 
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mat

Chumono
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#15
Does the fact that Schefflera trunks don't fuse when grown together mean that they're difficult to graft?
 
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Salt Lake City, Utah
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#16
Hello everyone I'm new to this site and just wanted to say it seems a lot more friendly than another site I am a member of. I think I will like it here!!!

I don't know if the aerial roots on my schef are fusing to the trunk but I have been training them to grow along it for the past 3 years.
 

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#17
Welcome, Evan.

Schefflera don't fuse nearly as readily as Ficus. Even experienced growers like Jerry Meislik find it hard to persuade them to fuse.

But even without fusing, your scheff is looking pretty good! Striking front view. :)