Ponderosa Pine—With Same Wire for 10 Years

2 months ago Nebby 0

Source: Crataegus Bonsai Blog.

It’s true. I’ve a pine with the same wire on it for 10 years. We often hear talk of removing the wire on our trees in the fall. The question is, when they are not in danger of biting in, why take the wires off? Sometimes, the thinking is, it’s to protect from damage from cold—which, as Chapter 31 of Bonsai Heresy explains, is a myth. Most bonsai, particularly conifers, need wire to dent into the branch slightly before removal, otherwise they spring back nearly to where they were before. The question of course is what a ‘dent’ is. This I’d define as a mark or indentation when the wire is taken off, but not so much that the top of the wire is level with the bark of the branch. That would be fairly well into the damage zone, particularly with deciduous trees. If wire hasn’t made a dent in the branch, you’re safe to leave it on a while longer. There’s no reason to check wires in the winter (in temperate climates), but spring through fall wires can bite in fast. A good practice is to routinely and systematically go though your bonsai garden and see which are getting too tight. Although 10 years is an extreme example, many slowly growing mature conifers can go 2 years or longer before wire needs removal. Young, vigorously growing conifers may need removal in less than a year. Often only one or two months is the limit for deciduous trees. Old conifers,…

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