Before I get in trouble for trying to push myself too hard, I actually did all this work at the beginning of November.
You guys remember this tree?
It’s from this post about a year ago.
It was my experiment with severe bending and using a high tech product.
The product is called “self-amalgamating” electrical tape. Which means that it only sticks to itself.
When making severe bends in a branch we usually wrap the limb in a natural product called raffia, which is made from palm fronds.
Why? Well….without getting into the physics of it, when you wrap the branch before bending, it greatly reduces the possibility of breakage.
I used the tape instead of raffia here to test it and because using it makes me appear to be cutting edge and modern and cool.
Cool dude am I.
Here’s the tape.
I transformed the tree from this.
And, with the tape and lots of wire.
We left it like this a year ago.
And here it is today (or last month actually).
Some close up shots showing the bends and, conveniently, the new growing tips.


Growing tips are important on junipers, preserve them, don’t pinch them. Mike Hagedorn wrote the best article on his blog on pruning junipers, it is in your best interest to look it up.
First bit of work is a lot of wire removal.

It took me maybe an hour to remove all the wire.
It would probably take about three if I tried it today. I’m pretty weak (for those who are wondering) from my hospitalization. One day at a time.
Kind of like developing a bonsai tree.
The biggest difference in using the tape instead of the raffia should be the stickiness of the wrap. Raffia almost always sticks to the tree’s bark and it’s a tedious task removing it.
The tape, as it’s advertised, should only stick to itself. Let’s see if the advertising lives up to itself.

Seems to be working.
You just scissor it off and it peels like a banana peel.

I’m in love.
You have no idea how easy that is compared to removing raffia.
The next thing I’m doing is a slight repot. Just to get the angle right.
The roots look purty.
I’m changing training pots.
From a rectangle.
To a little deeper oval.
And violá!
What else?
Nothing. I’m going to let it grow from here and in February or March I’ll go back in and do some serious wiring.
Like I said, one day at a time.
And if I’m strong enough after my second surgery (which should occur around the end of February), you’ll see what I’m gonna do.
In the meantime, I might have some more pics in my phone for another post.
Or, I’m actually supposed to review a book.
Whatever I figure out, I’ll talk to you soon.

9 thoughts

  1. Good to see you “back in action”. Hope you’re doing better.

    I just got what I believe is a 15-ish year old parson’s juniper from my parents front yard and I’m trying to bend some of the branches without cracking them.

    Who makes that tape that you used on your juniper?


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