Root Over Rock Chinese Elm in Development

During my weekly meeting with Gerry, we took a close look at a shohin Chinese elm that he had attached to a rock last year. He simply, bare rooted the tree with a water jet, wrapped it’s roots around the rock and tied them in tightly with some wire. He then placed the tree in a five inch plastic pot and filled it up with akadama.

We started by cutting the pot back to look for fine root development


When we could see that there were lots of fibrous roots, we removed the tree from the pot for a closer look.

The rock, which has a depth of about four inches (10cm) has fine roots growing around and below it. The depth of the roots, below the rock is about half an inch (1 to 2cm).


We decided that for the next stage in the tree’s development, it would be advantageous to plant the tree on a deep layer of akadama in an eight inch pond basket to encourage further root development beneath the rock.


With the tree firmly tied into the basket, more akadama was added to temporarily cover the exposed fibrous roots on the side of the rock. These will be removed the next re-potting if there are sufficient new roots beneath the stone.


This is how it is looking at the moment

Side A


Side B


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