Cotoneaster franchetii

This tree started life as a weed. I.E. a self seeded shrub at the bottom of an escallonia hedge. It had two large trunks which were cut right back before digging out. What was left was potted in a container and left for many years. I started to train it about 7 years ago and had a go at carving the stumps about 5 years ago. I have futtered with it on and off since then.

I returned to it mid summer this year and was disappointed to find that the exposed timber was very soft and was rotting at soil level. I treated it with a dose of Ronseal wood hardener and when I had a look at it today I found that the surface of the timber is still a little spongy. I have no idea what is happening under the soil.

This is she viewed from what I have more or less treated as the front. The pot is a bespoke design commissioned from Bangor Diaries some years ago. They are very rare and much sought after. Although the tree sits well in this pot I am considering replacing it with a suitable alternative in the Spring if I can find one. Has anyone seen Peter Snart about the place?


Detail of the deadwood

There is an interesting long root/secodary trunk  riding down the back of the tree

View of the back of the tree

I have given the deadwood another heavy coat of wood hardener. Still wet in this pic.

In order to reduce the shine I rubbed the coated area with a stiff brush and also with my finger when the resin was still a little tacky. It does work. When it is completely dry a little coarse plastering sand can be brushed over the surface. This can get into all the little nooks and crannies which are not accessible with sand paper and it will dull the surface further  to an acceptable standard.

Although this is a fairly large leafed shrub I think the thick trunk and deadwood area tend to make it quite acceptable as a bonsai. Others of course may disagree. 

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3 Responses to Cotoneaster franchetii

  1. bonsai eejit says:

    Interesting Michael, I can’t remember seeing this one when I was over. Keep the wood hardener handy for when you repot. You’ll need to treat any deadwood down as far as you can.

    Is there still a live vein on the main trunk? Or, is the tree relying on that aerial root for survival?

    In a photo the tree looks about 1 inch too tall, but I reserve the right to change my mind when I see it in the flesh 🙂

    A nice new pot will make this a rather nice tree in the Spring. See if Peter will take the Bangor Dairy pot as a trade in LOL.


  2. peter snart says:

    I agree with Ian that the apex could be lower , even a bit more than an inch , the deadwood is a bit too much in your face with the front as you have it , it could be nice to see something of that unusual root at what is now your back !
    Pretty sure I will have a pot to suit when I see you in Feb. Mike , also , fairly sure that the unique pot from the famous Bangor Dairies will have some very significant value , but only if you find an Englishman even more stupid than me 🙂 be very careful about any response you might make to that last comment Eeejit !!!!!!!!


  3. Thanks Guys. Very happy with your comments and agree about the height and the inclusion of the root in a new front view. Re a live vein etc. Truth is I just dont know. I have always assumed there is but maybe a closer look by Ian will help determine. For the life of me I just don’t know what Peter means about the existing pot.


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