Add a touch of baroque grandeur. Designs like this can be used as a quirky frame for a mirror.
Add a touch of baroque grandeur. Designs like this can be used as a quirky frame for a mirror.

Have you ever had the strange sensation that the trees are looking at you? Pooktre garden in Queensland might just confirm your suspicions! The garden is filled with trees shaped into incredible human-like forms, living chairs, mirror frames and more.


How it's done

The Pooktre technique for shaping trees is a gradual process which begins when the trees are young. The supple new growth is guided along a framework of wire, similar to espaliering, until the tree attains its desired shape – this takes many years. The wire frame is then removed, leaving an amazing living artwork. While the method they use is time consuming, world-renowned tree shapers, Peter Cook and Becky Northey, believe it’s a gentle, harmonious way to shape and doesn’t ultimately harm the tree. The species they most commonly use is a form of plum, Prunus cerasifera, but in more recent years they’ve also been trialling the black cherry (Prunus serotina).

A collection of spiralling branches combines to create an impressive Gothic chair.
Perfect symmetry can be achieved by guiding branches along framework – just ask this tree-man!

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