Bonsai Tree Raffia - Branch Protection - Wiring Aid
Imported Raffia. Raffia is used to protect the branches and bark of your bonsai tree when using branch benders or training wire. Raffia is an essential element in the process of wiring your bonsai tree - don't skip it. Raffia, the secret that Japanese Masters have used for centuries to prevent scaring and splitting of branches when wiring and shaping. Just soak Raffia in water, take several strands and wrap tightly around branch before wiring. Always protect your trees trunk and branches when wiring.
Here's how it works: Soak the Raffia in water for 30 minutes and then wind it tightly around the length of the branch. As the raffia dries it will shrink and tighten a bit, giving the branch more support - to ensure it does not snap when shaping.
In addition to protecting and strengthening the branch, Raffia helps keep the branch supple and pliable and prevents the bark from drying out and developing cracks. I also dramatically reduces the scars associated with wiring by preventing the wire from digging directly into the branch as it grows.
Raffia is also commonly used in the Bonsai "shaping" process by tethering it to the trunk of the tree, and a branch, to pull it down into a natural looking downward position.