Tanuki: Share your secrets

bonsai barry

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I would like to know the different ways people have created tanuki or phoenix grafts. What is the most effective way to keep the growing plant in the channel carved in the dead wood?
 

jk_lewis

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Most people use brass tacks or brads.

For me, I do small trees. My only tanuki is glued in place with model airplane cement. It is 11 inches tall. It's done OK for about 5 years now. I took this picture before giving it a haircut. Sorry.
 

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Brian Underwood

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When you make the groove in the piece of deadwood, the inside diameter must be slightly larger than the opening of the groove. When the juniper whip grows, it will secure its self permanently. You can use whatever method you like to secure it at first; grafting tape, tacks, nails, etc.
 

october

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Hello bonsai barry.. The channel method as descibed is the way to do it. Also, using the brass screws are an option. If I was to create another one, I would consider jkl's glue method. Also, you can strip some bark/cambium off the live tree before you set it in the channel. This would most likely make the tree actually form a graft on the dead wood.

This is mine. It was done in a workshop with John Romano. John attached the tree and I styled.
 

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What season would be the best to try a Shimpaku Tanuki???

I plan on using Dan bartons method, of stripping the bark back and utilizing grafting wax, but ill use brass screws and raffia to secure it to the driftwood, for a whole growing season.

This is all new to me so i appreciate any and all help i can get.
 

october

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Hello Crafty Tanuki...If you are securing the tree with brass screws, rafia is probably not necessary. You will need to treat the wood. First, if you want to bleach the wood more white, you can paint it with lime sulfur. Then you will need to soak the driftwood in some form of wood hardener/sealant. You could also just apply several layers of wood hardener instead of soaking it. As for the labor part... Basically, you would carve a channel in the back/side of the driftwood. Then strip away some bark from the live young tree where it is going to be attached to the driftwood. Then screw the tree into the drfitwood in a couple of places. You will also need to attach the tree to the bottom of the pot somehow. One method is just to drill a couple of screws in the sides of the driftwood. You would need to drill almost at the bottom so you don't see the screws. Then attach a mesh bottom to the pot, then wrap the wire around the screws and through the mesh and through the pot holes at the bottom to secure it. Some people actual use a kind of cement and create a base and then tie that in.

If I may...I do not know your experience level. However, if you are not experienced in bonsai or have not been in it for very long. This can be a very demanding project. Simply because of all the labor that is involved and then the tree will need to be craftfully wired into a bonsai shape. Usually tanuki are created by artists that have been in bonsai for many years..say 10 + years. You might find it better in the long run to gain a couple/few years of experience then attempt it. As I said, I do not know your experience level. Also, I would never try to discourage someone from attemptinmg a bosnai project that they are passionate about. I just want your final result to be one you are pleased with.

I hope this was helpful

Rob
 
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