Nebari development question

Cajunrider

Masterpiece
Messages
2,498
Reaction score
3,593
Location
Louisiana
USDA Zone
9A
I have a still-a-baby bald cypress with a 2" caliper as measured at 1ft level. It has one root that is way too large compared to others around the trunk. I attempted to correct it by tracing the root into the soil about 6" or so then cut off the rest. I hope to restrict the flow through this root and slow its growth way down while stimulating other roots to take up the load and grow bigger. Will this work for bald cypress or any type of tree for that matter?
 

bwaynef

Omono
Messages
1,479
Reaction score
1,583
Location
Clemson SC
USDA Zone
8a
That's common practice on young material, particularly in the nebari development phase. Similar to what we do above the ground when an area gets too strong, roots that are too strong can be pruned more severely than others. Also, upon collection, BC are often treated as glorified cuttings so I'd suspect a young one would be able to survive severe root pruning.

My concern is what time of year you did it. I don't have any BC (yet) but I've never seen any indication that they need to be treated differently, so I'd recommend root work, especially severe root work, be done in Spring. I suspect younger material might make this less of an issue.
 

sorce

Nonsense Rascal
Messages
31,840
Reaction score
43,733
Location
Berwyn, Il
USDA Zone
6.2
I think that is a swell (antiswell🤔😉) idea.....

For a newb in the North.

For me, BC stands almost alone in this, "no comparison" category, where, no matter what is done, nothing grown will ever be nicer faster than a big ole swamp creature.

I understand that not everyone can go thigh deep amongst gators to collect these specimen, but there is a dude who does who can not do what you do, whatever that may be, so I would, while you continue on your experimental education, barter your skill with that person, in an attempt to more quickly acquire what you seek.

I feel that bartering, in this day, is something that must be practiced, because soon it will be necessary for food, safety, shelter, etc.

Sorce
 

Cajunrider

Masterpiece
Messages
2,498
Reaction score
3,593
Location
Louisiana
USDA Zone
9A
I think that is a swell (antiswell🤔😉) idea.....

For a newb in the North.

For me, BC stands almost alone in this, "no comparison" category, where, no matter what is done, nothing grown will ever be nicer faster than a big ole swamp creature.

I understand that not everyone can go thigh deep amongst gators to collect these specimen, but there is a dude who does who can not do what you do, whatever that may be, so I would, while you continue on your experimental education, barter your skill with that person, in an attempt to more quickly acquire what you seek.

I feel that bartering, in this day, is something that must be practiced, because soon it will be necessary for food, safety, shelter, etc.

Sorce
Many such people come into mind @Sekibonsai, @BillsBayou, and @Joe Dupre'
I myself have plan to go to a friend's farm this winter to find one. He's got a big pond with a few BCs at the edge.
I have grown a few hundred BC's. Most of them went to my land or my friend's land. I have about a dozen in Anderson clone flats. I am playing around with the species. I reckon in 4 years I will have a few to get rid of here.
PS: I have respect but no fear for gator. They need to fear me, else they be fried, BBQ'd or wind up in my sauce piquant.
 

Cajunrider

Masterpiece
Messages
2,498
Reaction score
3,593
Location
Louisiana
USDA Zone
9A
That's common practice on young material, particularly in the nebari development phase. Similar to what we do above the ground when an area gets too strong, roots that are too strong can be pruned more severely than others. Also, upon collection, BC are often treated as glorified cuttings so I'd suspect a young one would be able to survive severe root pruning.

My concern is what time of year you did it. I don't have any BC (yet) but I've never seen any indication that they need to be treated differently, so I'd recommend root work, especially severe root work, be done in Spring. I suspect younger material might make this less of an issue.
Down here I still have at least two months of growth in the second growing season so I can do it now. They still have strong leaves and can push roots until November. I've done a few BC air layers at this time of the year even.
 

Cajunrider

Masterpiece
Messages
2,498
Reaction score
3,593
Location
Louisiana
USDA Zone
9A
@sorce
My BCs from seed grow pretty fast. I can get to 4" trunk and 12-15ft tall in no time. Still I am going to the swamp soon :)
 

Leo in N E Illinois

The Professor
Messages
10,301
Reaction score
20,408
Location
on the IL-WI border, a mile from ''da Lake''
USDA Zone
5b
Root pruning to balance size and distribution of a roots is appropriate. I might have shortened it to less than 6 inches long if the tree were mine. Bald cypress is hardy through zone 5, so late season repotting is likely not going to cause any problems.

Bald Cypress have always fascinated me, they are closely related to the redwoods, which explains their rapid growth, and extreme long lives. While no where near as tall as the coast redwoods, they get pretty big and develop huge root buttresses. Their ability to grow with roots submerged is fairly unique. Even more interesting is they do not need to grow submerged, faster growth is had when they are grown more like a conventional upland tree with good moisture.

The photos are of the oldest bald cypress in Illinois. Yes, bald cypress is native to Illinois, if you know where to look. This one is estimated to be 1300 years old. Notice this bald cypress swamp is not as lush as southern swamps. Area was logged about 100 years ago, this lone tree was left for what ever reason. Likely the water was too deep and didn't freeze solid because of current. Most of the old groves along this river are in areas where current doesn't let the river freeze, so loggers can't get to the trees in winter, when they log around here. No tillandsia, Spanish moss, hanging from the trees, we get too cold this far north. We canoe this swamp in late autumn or early winter, after the leaves fall, for two reasons. Its easier to see where you are going, and can see the full size of the tree. Second reason is poisonous snakes, mainly water moccasin, aka cottonmouth. The area is lousy with these thuggish snakes, paddling in winter is much safer. I visited once in summer, got chased off the boardwalk, back to the parking lot by a big, likely near 6 foot long cottonmouth. They are aggressive, nasty, ill tempered, territorial, venomous snakes.

DSCN1722 (2019_10_20 19_42_16 UTC).jpg cypress1300yr-old-2 (2019_10_20 19_42_16 UTC).JPG cypress1300yr-old-3 (2019_10_20 19_42_16 UTC).JPG
 

rockm

Spuds Moyogi
Messages
11,296
Reaction score
15,833
Location
Fairfax Va.
USDA Zone
7
you probably have time to do some root work down that way. Optimally, however, spring is best, longer recovery time and less chance of dieback.

FWIW, one of the northernmost stand of Bald Cypress in the country is in Maryland not far from me (there's another stand in Delaware). The oldest tree east of the Mississippi is a bald cypress in North Carolina's Black River refuge--Three Sisters Swamp. The tree is over 2,600 years old. There are more close to that age as well in the area.


 

Similar threads

Top Bottom