Originally posted 2-15-2016
Bonsai Cut Paste 101
Making a superior cut paste is a difficult and complicated
process. Selecting the proper cut paste can be just as challenging.
Cut pastes and wound dressings can be classified into two
groups. Cream and Clay. The cream type
pastes will come in a tube and have the consistency of a thick lotion. Clay cut
pastes are sold in blocks or tubs.
The premise is simple. Seal any exposed layers below the
exterior bark. This seal provides a temporary skin to the tree limiting
dieback, infection and drying.
These layers include the periderm(cork and cork cambium),
phloem, vascular cambium, sapwood and heartwood. In short, if you have a small
gouge or a deep pruning wound cut paste can be used.
The cream type cut paste is used for level or flat wounds.
These wounds are often level with the bark layer. It should be applied in a
thin layer similar to wrapping a sandwich with saran wrap. Examples would be
sealing the end of a branch you just trimmed back or sealing the trunk when a
branch was removed.
The clay type cut pastes are used for irregular wounds or
voids. An example would be damage from a woodborer. The clay type cut paste
would work best to fill the tunnel created buy the insect.
We will not get into detail on when and if to use cut paste.
Lets just leave it some people use it and others do not. Personally I use it on
all of my trees.
I have studied cut paste for more than a year. Testing and
retesting formulas. I have found our bonsai cut paste recipe to be superior
even though its complicated and expensive to produce. Let me explain why.
- Its manufactured in the USA with extreme pride and attention
to detail. This makes it difficult to
compete with imports, as labor costs in the states are much higher than what
you would find in other countries such as china. We are competing and winning
the majority of market share. As of 2-15-14 we have shipped to 44
- We have five available colors to match your tree. This works well to camouflage the wound,
especially on trunk wounds.
- Our product is fresh when compared to imports. Imports pass
through several suppliers before reaching your tool bag. In the beginning we
produced all of our cut paste in 32 tube lots. Today we are making batches of
600 ounces on a regular basis. Producing batches on demand ensures we do not
have unused product sitting stagnant on the shelf for many years.
- Our product is free of synthetic oils. I don’t want to point
fingers at other manufactures but some contain industrial type oils. We use
only natural food grade odorless oils. If it goes in your car its probably not
good for your tree.
- Our product is insecticide and medication free. It is my
opinion that these added ingredients increase dieback. Think of cut paste as a
band-aid. If the wound is clean and you apply the band-aid you will not have
any issues. You will not find band-aids on the market that have antibiotics and
antiviral medication pre applied. As long as your tools are clean and you apply
the paste within a few minutes of the cut you will not have issues.
- Our product will automatically shed when the wound has
healed. This is because our product remains somewhat flexible months after the
application. You know how frustrating it can be to remove cut paste from a tree
only to find it takes off more than the deadwood.
- Decreased dieback. The absolute test for a cut paste
application is the amount of dieback it creates. Nothing else matters! We have
an old video on youtube covering this issue. Our product results in 10-70
percent less dieback than other pastes.
The cut paste with the least amount of dieback on your specific tree and
region is the one you need. Even if that’s another brand.
If you are a consumer of bonsai cut paste you need to use
the product that creates the least amount of dieback. No matter the
brand, type, cap color, or ingredients. Use what creates the least amount of
dieback for your region and trees. Nothing else matters as the purpose of cut
paste is to protect a wound with the least amount of scarring.
Thanks for reading. Feedback is always welcome. By Bonsai Jack