The art of Tree Shaping

Tree shaping, known under a variety of names, is the art and technique of growing and shaping trunks, branches and roots of trees and other woody plants. By grafting, shaping, and pruning the woody trunks, or guiding branches, trees are made to grow into ornamental or useful shapes. Tree shaping is similar to espalier, bonsai and sometimes includes some topiary.

The art of Tree Shaping pictures

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Title should be The art of Tree shaping.
Go to /wiki/Tree_shaping.

There are two main methods of shaping trees and Arborsculpture is one sytle of shaping trees and not the accepted name for the art form.

Have a read of the talk page to see how a group of people from the field of shaping trees came to the consensus that a neutral name was needed for the artform, and Tree shaping was decided upon.

Check this site has lots of photos

Cyber stalking the word arborsculpture also ?

Search "Becky AND Arborsculpture"

If you research that wikipeda discussion to find it was instigated and written by good folks with competing word in mind.

"Arborsculpture" is correct.


And the book,
"Arborsculpture- Solutions for a small planet" 2005

Hey man,
Reading the talk page and following the links on that page it was editors from outside the field that changed the page.

It looks like all the artists have their own word for they own work.

It seems to be that dude Richard Reames is pushing his pet word created for his book as above.

Everyone knows Wikipedia is the encyclopedia anyone can edit, and I mean ANYONE!

In 1995 Reames published "How To Grow a Chair" where he uses the word to describe the tree work of Axel Erlandson and his own work. In 2005 Reames published "Arborsculpture" presenting many new historical examples and modern practitioners. For his 2nd edition in 2007 one artistic couple submitted updated photos and new materiel for the book, but shortly thereafter started a cyber stalking campaign to try and stop the use of the word “Arborsculpture” and replace it with “Tree Shaping” by starting with Wikipedia and even going as far as to accuse Reames of branding others work “Arborsculpture” to get credit or sales for it. For over a year now every time a blog used it, a comment with copied text (spam) was added.
All the while these otherwise good hearted, talented folks are writing their own soon to be published book title,,,, you guessed it "Knowledge of Tree Shaping".

There is room for both terms to live on the web. No one needs go and track down and spam every instance of this word, that’s already be done dude.

Chill dude,
Commenting on one blog is hardly cyber stalking, it's voicing an opinion. People will read the talk page and decide for themselves.
Later man.

Hi this is Becky form Pooktre.
Wow what a heated reaction to a comment. First none of the trees were created using Richard Reames Arborsculpture instant extreme bending methods. Arborsculpture relates to Richard Reames's method of shaping trees. There are two main bending methods. Instant and gradual tree shaping. Most of the trees pictured here were shaped using the gradual method. Can the person who posted this entry please delete our image of the living chair tree. As our tree it is unachievable using the Instant method.

@ Anonymous Mark Primack as acknowledged by Richard Reames as the leading expert on Alex N Erlandson. (Alex’s trees are photos top, 4th,8th and last) I believe Mark Primack comment on Wikipedia sums it up well.
Mark Primack on Wikipedia quote:- (into) My name is Mark Primack. I live in Santa Cruz, California, and I am the discoverer, historian and, according to its current owners, the savior of Axel Erlandson’s World Famous Tree Circus. In 1974 I coined the phrase ‘Botanic Architecture’ to put a name to the conceptual work I was undertaking in the area of growing trees and other plants to create living habitations. (point) Mr. Reames has made extensive use of my material and sources in the development of both his craft (‘arborsculpture’) and his books. Still, I do not characterize his work as ‘Botanic Architecture’, nor would I associate my work, or Erlandson’s with ‘arborsculpture’. That word is no more nor less than the name chosen by Mr. Reames to describe what he has accomplished with his own hands. His recent efforts to center himself in the world of artists (some more accomplished or famous than himself) who are working with living plants and trees, by applying his brand to all their work, may someday succeed, but it does not appear to be the mission of Wikipedia to support such efforts.

The title of our book is “Pooktre knowledge to grow shaped trees” We only have own work in our book and not other peoples shaped trees. So our title will only be branding our own trees and not others. Google “Pooktre knowledge to grow shaped trees” been our title for ages.

Google Bonsai, 1000s of clubs and associations. Google Arborsculpture no clubs or associations, Arborsculpture comes from and points to Richard Reames.

Whoaa, what a heat eh hehe. I'm sorry if the title went wrong. So i will change the title now and remove the chair tree.

Thanks very much guys, and all the best to you. Peace :)

We are happy to have our chair tree under a neutral name. If you like to use a more updated photo of the chair tree there is one on the wikipedia page, or go to our site

Here’s the full story as I understand it – PART ONE

The word “arborsculpture” was coined by Richard Reames about 15 years ago. He never capitalized it, called it “the arborsculpture method”, or did anything similar to imply that it is a term for his method. The world needed a word for the sort of 3-D pleaching done by Erlandson and others, so Reames made up a useful term that easily gives a sense of what it refers to.

Over time, it became a popular term. Numerous published articles refer to the work of Axel Erlandson and others as “arborsculpture.” Some of these are in notable publications such as Popular Science and Science Frontiers, or are related to the relevant departments at respected universities.

Mark Primack coined the term “botanic architecture” and considers this a term specific to methods typified by himself and Erlandson. While that’s Primack’s prerogative, neither Reames nor the world at large consider “arborsculpture” to be a comparable term referring to a method rather than the more general practice.

Archive #4 on the talk page of Wikipedia’s “tree shaping” article documents dozens of occurrences of “arborsculpture” as a generic term. If the person who invented the term, and the world at large, consider a term to be generic, there is no logical reason why 1 or 2 people should be able to override that and tell us it is not.

I haven’t seen any evidence that Reames has exerted improper influence in promoting the use of this word. Like any author and lecturer interested in income, he does self-promote, but I haven’t seen evidence that he does so in a way that should provoke criticism.

Primack is correct that Wikipedia should not be used as a tool to advance someone’s personal interests, but I haven’t seen evidence that Reames has done this. I have seen Beckley Northey abuse Wikipedia for her personal agenda, and I suspect Northey’s involvement with Wikipedia – and her characterization of Reames’ involvement with Wikipedia – may have colored Primack’s reaction.

Becky Northey has ambitiously chased the word "arborsculpture" all over the web in order to misinform people that the word has not fallen into general usage but instead refers to a specific method developed by Reames. She also considers Reames’ methods inferior to her own, apparently because they can involve the bending of relatively hardened wood versus the bending of the younger, softer wood she prefers.

Therefore, I conclude, that Northey’s obsession with suppressing the widely-used term “arborsculpture” is driven by her professional rivalry with Reames.

Here’s the full story as I understand it – PART TWO

After manipulating the Wikipedia article “tree shaping” to serve this agenda (despite policies against editing articles when a conflict of interest exists), Northey left posts on numerous internet forums referring people to the Wikipedia article as supposed proof of her assertions.

As recently as April 2010, she is ignoring the consensus of Wikipedia editors and administrators that arborsculpture is a generic term. The article is in a constant state of flux because of Northey’s involvement. What you will see when you look at it is anyone’s guess. To be clear, Reames also edits this article, mostly just to curb Northey’s efforts at using it to oppugn him.

Northey’s has even managed to get well-meaning Wikipedians to avoid the word “arborsculpture” on the grounds it’s “controversial. It’s amazing (and sad) the influence one single person with skewed thought processes and a mania for advancing them can accomplish. On the surface, there’s no harm in avoiding the word “arborsculpture” just to keep Northey happy. But Wikipedia is supposed to be objective resource. Instead, it has become part of Northey’s greater effort across numerous internet forums, comment boards, etc.

In the comments above, someone referred to Northey’s efforts as cyberstalking. This caused someone else to say very correctly “Commenting on one blog is hardly cyber stalking, it's voicing an opinion.” Becky Northey, however, has made countless of posts as part of a systematic effort to assert that “arborsculpture” is the name for what she considers an inferior method of tree shaping. I would deem that cyberstalking.

If you don’t believe me, Google “Northey + arborsculpture” and wade through the results. As for evidence of arborsculpture as a generic term used by numerous authors, search the net yourself or see the proof already gathered in Archive #4 of the talk page of the “tree shaping” article on Wikipedia.

Why someone should go to such great efforts to create the impression that “arborsculpture” isn’t a generic term does puzzle me a little. My best guess is that it is driven by her animosity towards Reames and a belief that people using the term benefits Reames in some enormous way. From what I can see, it doesn’t. It looks like Reames only lectures a few times a year, and he doesn’t sell a ton of books either.

But if Reames can derive a little prestige, and perhaps some beer money, from having coined a useful word, why begrudge him that? Whether people say “the Pooktre method of tree shaping” or the “the Pooktre methods of arborsculpture” doesn’t affect Northey’s livelihood. She should therefore stop harassing Reames and channel that energy into the positive goals of refining her own methods, implementing them, and sharing them with the world.

My goodness! "Toe-May-Toe" or "Toe-Maw-Toe"? Who really cares? My only comment is that y'all need to get out in your yard/garden and plant a tree.

OMG!!! who cares... tree shaping/ arborsculpture... same diff
I would have thought the word arbor-sculpture would make sense or tree sculture as the pieces are sculpture more than something manufactured.
but anyways...
it seems Northey really wants to battle with someone and so does Reames... put them in a room together and let them go for it!

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