Bend it Like Beckham ????

Well hardly like Beckham but I have decided to try and do something about the long straight trunk of my Donegal hawthorn. I did manage, some years ago, to get a little subtle movement into the trunk ye just to the left of the V where marked on the first image. The second arrow to the left shows  where I want to introduce new movement.

Full tree movement

As I have said in earlier posts the tree from soil level to foliage, including the bark, is exactly as I found it growing on top of the derelict cottage wall all those years ago. The issue is now to get some movement into the boring trunk without damaging the bark.

I have made a rather unsophisticated cradle with a top pressure pad and lined the points that are in contact with the bark with a strong polystyrene foam. The aim was to obtain the movement using a simple pump action G clamp. I am glad to say that it has worked with no obvious damage to the bark.

I have no idea how far I can go with the bending as the tree wood is very old and not at all flexible. I have settled for just a little for now and if I think it is necessary I will apply a little more pressure in a few weeks time. Meanwhile I will mist the trunk with water every day for a week or so to facilitate healing of any splits in the bark and cambium layer that have developed.

When I have achieved the right movement I will then need to look at introducing a little movement into the vertical back branch.

The foliage mass is too bushy for a convincing windswept look but that is something to be addressed in the future when the tree has recovered from today’s work.

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