Defoliating /Leaf Removal

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Defoliating /Leaf Removal

Postby alpinebonsart » Mon Jan 05, 2009 10:53 am

Hi "fellow tree choppers" Bonsaists , wanna be's can be's and will be's .Here is a quick demo on defoliating a Trident Maple .

Firstly removing the leaves on most diciduous trees is possible , however there are exceptions , the main one is never ever defolinate a SICK tree or a RED MAPLE ,CULTIVAR OR ORNAMENTAL MAPLE other than that i try them all . Secondly it does absolutely no harm to your Bonsai ,it actual benefits greatly by improving ramafication {branchlets/fine branching} on what can be a lonely branch with leaves . Thirdly only remove Older harder leaves ,making sure not to cut off the tips ,safer to leave the last pair of leaves as these are usually soft . Fourthly this can be done 2-3-4 times during the growing season on Trident Maples and 2-3 times on Acer Palmatums , green mountain maples or the normal garden maple that is found in suburban gardens , but not with any cultivars , reds or ornamentals . Yes they go wheels up real quick .

Partial defolination can be done to improve a branch followed by complete removal after the new growth has hardened off . However not recomended on the reds and cultivars as they DO NOT respond and the likelyhood of the branch dieing is increased 4 fold . Armed with your leaf trimmers cut the leaf off at the top leaving the stem of the leaf on the tree ,these will drop off when the new growth burst appears . They protect the new invisible shoots we are stimulating to improve the ramafication/branch stucture . At the end the branch stucture will be exposed and trimming of the unwanted branchlet can be easily done .

Wiring can be applied to the branches as they are now clear of foliage , however Tridents as with all maple are very brittle , i have had many trees damaged by wiring so to let you all in on a secret i use Clothes pegs {SNICKER HEE HEE} DONT LAUGH I HAVE BEEN USING PEGS FOR YEARS AND NEVER BRAKE A BRANCH . Where extra weight is required add another and another ,it work a treat and your friends will think your "looney" the advantage of pegs is they can be removed in seconds to see if the branch i set . Dont bother about placing a peg over the leaf stubs with the hole in the peg usually larger the the little branch it wont harm the new shoot , athough i try to keep them clear. Good luck and Happy Bonsai . Cheers Ian
AH Yes my trusty leaf trimmer for the last 10 years
Posts: 233
Joined: Fri Jan 02, 2009 8:50 am
Location: N.E Victoria Alpine region

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