I’ve had this trident maple in the collection for a while now, maybe 3 years and while I’ve been working on the primary branching structure, the nebari has always been a standout issue that needs to be rectified if this tree is going to be given any chance at bright future.
The trunk is naturally very white so this year I’d decided it was time to do an air layer and look to fix the roots.
Here’s the current situation –
This last pic is around the back of the tree where the issues become far more obvious. There is a large dead section on the top if the root and it’s just ugly.
So once I’d decided to do the layer, it’s a matter of exactly where it’s positioned. I wanted to try and get some flare in the base utilising the existing trunk if at all possible so it doesn’t take on the view of a thick stick in a pot. When I measured, the ideal position is just below the existing scar on the front of the trunk. I know this isn’t the best but I’m hoping to rework the wound so it closes up further and adds to the character of the tree.
Then the bark and cambium layer were well and truly removed. Ideally the amount removed should have been further but as you’ll see the soil line prevented me from removing anything further.
Mesh was placed around the pot and root hormone powder was applied to the trunk. Then the soil mix was added.
And finally a nice layer of sphagnum moss was added to help retain moisture. I also put a layer of plastic around the mesh (not pictured) to help with moisture retention and new root protection.
So far the tree is responding well with buds bursting all over the tree after only 3 weeks since the layer was made. Keep an eye on this tree as I’ll be positing more pics in the future.