Heavy Bending

Mike Page

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Years ago I saw a demonstration on how to bend a heavy branch or trunk. The technique involved carving our the branch so little was left but the live part. then a metal rod was fitted in the hollow, and the branch was wrapped tightly with raffia. Then the bending process began. The metal rod adds strength and holding power, and the raffia prevents the branch from splitting.
When I got home from the demo, I was hot to go on radical bending. I decided to use this juniper to try out the technique. The branch was straight and pointed down at about a 45 degree angle. I took it slow and easy over several months to make the bend. The I left the rod and raffia on for a few months to be sure the bend held.
The juniper was repotted a few days ago in this old Shigaraki pot.
 

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michaelj

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I tried my first really heavy bending last night on a long thin pine whose first branch was at about 28". The idea was to make the first 20" or so a long sharp bend, bringing the foliage down to a pleasing height. I took lots of photos to make a blog post out of it. In the end, it looked really bad.

I'm going to go read those links and try again tonight.
 

sikadelic

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I may be off, but I think I distinctly remember Vic posting her process and it sounded identical to that. I cant find the thread though.
 

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