I recently acquired a California juniper with two approach grafts. The grafts were struck to change the foliage from California juniper to shimpaku juniper.
At first glance, it looked like the grafts had both taken. The key indicator is when the branch swells past the graft union.
California juniper with two approach grafts
Swelling past the graft union
The graft aftercare had been good. At a spot just below the union, the live bark had been incrementally cut away.
Dead wood where the lifeline had been removed
There is also a tourniquet below the union to further restrict resources returning to the roots.
Aluminum wire tourniquet
Looking from the other side of the graft, I found a small strand of lifeline.
Sliver of remaining lifeline
I cut into it with a grafting knife to make it more narrow, but cut all the way through it on the first pass as it was very slender.
The last strand of lifeline
As there was so little lifeline left to support the grafted foliage, I separated the roots and moved on to the second approach graft.
There was no remaining lifeline on this graft so I completely cut it. This left a short stub.
Stub left after removing the roots
I cut the stub just below the union and treated it with cut paste to promote callus formation.
After removing the stub
After sealing the wound with cut paste
Here’s the tree after removing the roots from both approach grafts.
Grafted California juniper – 28″
As you can see, there are still two branches with California juniper foliage. I’ll leave these for now as I may make additional grafts at the base of these branches to complete the transformation from California juniper to shimpaku juniper.
I’ll let the new branches grow some more before wiring them into place and giving the tree a new shape, likely this coming winter.
Bonsai Sale Update
Thanks to everyone who’s inquired about trees in the bonsai sale! I’ve updated the sales page and added five new items. As before, trees may be picked up in Alameda, California anytime or at the U.S. National Exhibition in Rochester, New York on September 10th.
See the new trees, including this juniper, in the Bonsai Sale!
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