Will it live?


King of Splices
Mar 30, 2005
Snowless California
The day before easter, Karina and I took her little brothers climbing in a nearby park. It was a cool climb in what I am quite sure is a 50' English walnut (Juglans regia). We had a fun climb. When taking the 4 ropes out of the tree, a small limb, about 1' in length was broken from the tree by a falling cambium saver.

I didn't think much of it, but as we were walking back to the car, I scooped up the branch, thinking I might be able to keep it alive.

So, the question. How long do you think this thing will live?

I cut the break at an angle, shaped like a V, to increase the area of exposed cambium... maybe it can take up more water this way? I put it in water. It's been going about 2 full days now and the leaves have doubled in size. There are small fruits that were barely discernible 2 days ago.

Have a look-see...



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your only bet...IMO, is to take a "cutting" of the new growth. Then, dip into rooting hormone and place in soil....keep you fingers crossed. Since you have a big piece , do several. The "old wood" on the broken limb will not root. The spring growth might though.....
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  • #3
My goal is to bonsai it. I think it'd make an awesome bonsai as is.

Do you know if walnut is particularly bad "self rooting"? I know willow very easy.

I'm hoping not to cut this one. I could easily go back and take a few samples of newer growth to work with...

wont' work IMO....I have collected lots of trees...ONLY small cuttings survive the "cuttings" process . What the hell, you got nothing to lose, try it. I would try to root the small new growth though. Bonsai don't seem possible. Stuff that folks "air layer" on old wood can work....but that take TIME...............

Once you have a new seedling...let the BONSAI begin:D
hold the cut end under water. Re-cut it. Soak the new end in root hormone.

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  • #6
Where do I get this rooting hormone y'all're jabbering about? I've read about it a lot in bonsai books over the years, but never looked for it in a store..

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  • #9
Sweet! There's a hydroponics shop on my commute to work!

I'm sure everyone else just goes there for walnut trees, too:/:

.3 or .8% IBA would likely be the Rx Nick. If you can get a vitamin B-1 product that might help too.
Nick said: Where do I get this rooting hormone y'all're jabbering about? I've read about it a lot in bonsai books over the years, but never looked for it in a store..

Uhhhh, look for it in a store :D 8)

A good book to git info on your project-Plants and plant propogation. I think the author is Pirone but thats off the top of my head. It is very detailed as what you can do with each tree. It is used as a text book and fairly easy to find used. I have been tempted but my local library has it so that is cheaper. My son started hemlock and blue spruce from seed following this book. They were doing great untill a rabbit found them and thought they were tasty!! Good Luck
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  • #18
Cool! Thanks, frans! Will it do the sparky thing that they show on the website? I'd pay extra for that...

week.....it's a gonner..If you collect a Bonsai, you need some roots to work with.
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  • #21
For posterity's sake, the cutting was taken and put in water on Saturday, March 22 at about 4pm.

A week?! That's all you're giving it? I'm gonna say 8 says MINIMUM.

shall we have a moment of silence for it?:lol:
I just strated repotting some of my 50+trees in pots....aka BONSAI:D Timing is everything.
hold the cut end under water. Then re-cut that end while holding it under water.

That way no air pockets get into the vascular system and block the uptake of water.

Old florists trick...
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  • #25
Well, I think we just took a couple days off the final score. I came home and the branch was on the floor. It had been in a jar in front of an open window. Either a squirrel hopped in or a gust of wind knocked it down.

I recut the end and put it back. The leaves are a little wilted, but I'm sure by morning things will be back to normal.

Frans, I'm not sure about the air pockets thing. It doesn't seem that trees absorb water in little clumps or gulps. I think osmosis would take care of air pockets...