How can you get a little grove of Japanese maple trees from one tree?

Discussion in 'Maples' started by JT1, Jun 4, 2013.

  1. JT1

    JT1 Contributor 10 Years

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    How can you get a little grove of Japanese maple trees from one tree without propagating seeds, grafting, air layering, or planting cuttings? Any guesses? Think outside the box...
     
  2. Imperfect Ending

    Imperfect Ending Active Member

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    There's not much you CAN do, porpogation-wise, "outside the box" other than those you have listed...

    ...but maybe have one or two Japanese maple seedlings, chop them to the lowest point where they can still branch and shape those branches into grove-like structure?
     
  3. maf

    maf Generous Contributor Maple Society 10 Years

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    Lay it on its side and let the branches become the trunks. I guess that would be considered a form of layering though.....
     
  4. DougieMapleSeed

    DougieMapleSeed Active Member

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    I'm going to go with tissue culture for the win.
     
  5. kbguess

    kbguess Rising Contributor 10 Years

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    Trade a larger specimen for a dozen seedlings?
    I don't think this violates the listed rules.

    My first thought was the same as maf's.

    Is there a correct answer? You have me curious
     
  6. JT1

    JT1 Contributor 10 Years

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    Wow, so many creative answers. In fact the novelty behind me originally posting this has been put to shame by all the creative responses. Aside from curiosity, here is the root behind my original question:

    A couple of years ago, I found a very very cheap Acer palmatum that was about 5' tall at a local garden center. It had a long straight trunk (about 1.5" thick) with a small canopy. Other than making a great standard for a graft, there was not a place for it in the landscape. Since the price was so good, I decided to take a chance and experiment with it.

    I cut it down to 1' to see if I could get some creative back budding. A month later it had new buds all over and started to branch out. I picked the side with the most branches and removed the rest from all the other sides. I took the tree out of the pot and raked the soil away and pruned the roots. I removed the majority of the roots on the side of all the remaining branches and planted the tree sideways in a spare pot.

    A week later all the leaves properly aligned themselves to the upright position and with a little imagination, all the original little branches started to look like trees.

    Here it is today. I plan on removing it from the pot and removing the original root ball this season, because all the branches that were removed (now in contact with the soil) started to sprout roots last season. I plan to re-pot it in something that is more aesthetically pleasing to make it look more like a miniature landscape maple grove.

    Here it is! In the second picture you can see the original trunk planted sideways. Anyway, thanks for all your creative responses! I hope it was not too big of a letdown.
     

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    Last edited: Jun 5, 2013
  7. AlainK

    AlainK Renowned Contributor Forums Moderator Maple Society 10 Years

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    Well, actually you re-discovered a technique that is used by bonsai amateurs to create a "raft style" bonsai ("Netsunagari" according to the Japanese codification) ;-)
     

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