This video shows the process of replicating a naturally-occuring area of deadwood on a deciduous tree to hide an ugly man-made scar caused by trunkchopping.
This 22"/56cm tall Hawthorn/Crataegus monogyna was collected from the wild in 2003. As a result of chopping the trunk of the original wild tree to reduce its height, there is now a large scar. Given its size and the poor callus formation of Hawthorn as a species, the scar is very unlikely to ever heal over and so, its appearance needs to be improved by carving.
The process of carving that I have developed, as shown in this video, is to use a drill-bit in Dremel to create hollows and indentations in the surface of the wood to recreate those that can be seen on deciduous trees in the wild.
The wood is carved out with an emphasis on creating depth into the wood. Care has to be taken to create a 'random' shape to the dead wood avoiding patterns that are obviously manmade such as perfect circles or straight edges. Care also has to be made to ensure that water can drain naturally from the carved area.
Once all of the debris from carving has been brushed away, the newly carved wood is then 'cleaned' up using a small gas torch.
The purpose of burning is to remove the burrs and stray fibres as well as sharp edges that occur after using carving bits; there are also secondary benefits to burning the wood. Firstly the wood takes on an aged patina and appearance as it is burnt, secondly, the process of super-heating hardens the remaining wood and protects it against rotting in the future.
After burning, the carved area is then cleaned up using wire brushes. I will allow the wood to take weather naturally over the course of the following months but it is possible to stain it using lime-sulphur and water-based black ink.
One final word of warning: carving is not always as easy as it looks, make sure you practice on some old timber or similar before working on your bonsai!
Related link: Creating and Using 'Uro' with Bonsai
Related link: Carving a Hawthorn Bonsai Video 2