Wire is commonly used in bonsai to allow accurate shaping and positioning of branches and trunks. It is also needed to anchor newly potted trees and to hold drainage mesh in place.
Chojo aluminium wire comes in nine gauges, at half millimetre increments from 1.0mm – 5.0mm. Please ensure you select the appropriate size(s).
It is worth investing in at least three or four different gauge wires to enable you to shape trunks and branches of varying thickness. The thickness of the selected wire should be roughly a third of the thickness of the designated branch or trunk that is to be bent.
The Japanese traditionally use copper wire for bonsai, due to its superior holding power, though it is now becoming less popular and is harder to source commercially. It should be noted that plastic-coated wire and other alternatives to bonsai wire that are available from garden centres are not only unsightly and have little 'holding' power but also contain metals that can cause severe damage (sometimes with fatal consequences) to trees when they come into contact with the cambium layer, the 'living tissue' of the tree.