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Tree roots are fascinating things and there was no better place to see the diversity of tree roots than amongst the streets of Hong Kong. Roots are the anchorage for the above ground element of the tree and they search out water and nutrients. If you are looking for inspiration for your bonsai artistry then have a look at some of these examples in an urban setting of trees defying the rules of engineering and as you can see in the next picture, someone who has tried it already with this ficus bonsai and with stunning results.

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Most roots are in the top 60cm of the soil, this varies with species and soil types but with some of these trees where direct access to soil was not available cracks in walls were the ideal hunting and anchoring spot for roots to take hold. However not all roots do the same thing, fibrous roots are feeding roots and the root tip or cap is the growth point while the root hairs absorb water and dissolved minerals.

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Some trees have tap roots but often over a period of time the main tap root rots away leaving the main structural roots for anchorage.

Some amazing feats of support by roots on the walls of full size mature figs it is incredible as well as other examples below of majestic trees in Kowloon Park and around Hong Kong Harbour.

For more information on tree roots have a look at some of the previous posts on roots in trees of all shapes and sizes