Advanced Techniques > Advanced Grafting Discussion

Grafting Mugo Pine

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--- Quote from: MatsuBonsai on June 13, 2013, 04:44 PM ---
No.  To get a tree to back bud you feed aggressively and let grow freely.

--- End quote ---

And then you cut it.

Removing most (not necessarily all) new growth after it has hardened is what really makes back buds.

That is what I heard Ryan Neil say in his lecture kn pines earlier this year. Cut back new growth on sjngle flush pines after it hardens of to promote back budding. This wil be negative for the development of the roots?

I said this was confusing (me).

With any and every specie of tree, back budding is induced by cutting back the season's new growth after it has hardened (meaning new leaves are like old ones instead of being soft, fleshy, and lightly colored). The tree, and its roots in particular, should have had a significant part of the season to have grown before you do this, if you want a robustly growing tree. Typically the season's new growth on a pine is cut back in Oct/Nov (temperate zones of the northern hemisphere).

It is that simple, but can easily made more complicated - fascinating things, plants, but especially trees.

Yes, the science says that if you remove the terminal growth the auxin that inhibits latent buds will be removed.  Blindly repeating the last line of a recipe doesn't make for a good cake.  I much prefer to begin with the first line of the recipe, start with a healthy tree (feed aggressively).

Let's explore the practice as it relates to bonsai and to pines in general.

Removing growth from a weak and/or newly collected tree you will merely weaken it further.  However, aggressively feeding pine trees will produce enough energy that latent buds will be activated. 

What happens if the new buds that formed were too weak, or appeared in the wrong places?   Oh crap, you removed all the candles so I guess bud grafting is out.  All the leggy branches are now weak and when you try to bend them back on themselves to approach graft they snap.  Not only that, but you slowed them down significantly so for the ones you are able to bend thickening will be slowed, and therefore the success rate is much lower.

On top of all that, this tree is recently collected.  Let the tree recover.  Let this years growth develop to produce and feed new roots.

If you want to graft, do so next year.


--- Quote from: MatsuBonsai on June 14, 2013, 08:44 AM ---On top of all that, this tree is recently collected.  Let the tree recover.  Let this years growth develop to produce and feed new roots.
--- End quote ---

+1 to everything this guy said, but especially this!


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