Author Topic: Candles  (Read 4851 times)

Steven

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Candles
« on: April 12, 2010, 08:26 PM »
Here in the South things are in full swing. Trees waking up, pollen galore, hummingbirds and swallows return. As some of my pine species have awakened I have noticed they pushing candles beyond what I've seen the previous 2 yrs or they are needling out here almost mid April.

I'll start with one of several 3 year old from seed JBP. I chose to show this one as it has the most vigorous candle lengths. As you can see at the top there 7 candles. 1 center candle(around 10") with 5 shorter candles(5"-6") and there is small one there about an inch or so. The pines height itself to the base of those candles is about 14" or so tall. You can see below on the branches therer are long skinny candles. Some of those are just starting to push needles but only at the last inch or less of the candle. Are those at the top drawing too much energy just lengthening? I know I will keep one of those at the top so that below can thicken. I feel, imo, that they are drawing too much energy and it will make those candles on the lower branches weak or weaker. Comments? Suggestions?

I'll go through each tree per post.
 

Steven

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Re: Candles
« Reply #1 on: April 12, 2010, 08:30 PM »
Next up is this JBP 'Mikawa' I purchased late last year. I do not know the age.

On this little one you can see 3 candles on top that are pushing needles already. guessing the lengths I'd say at least half an inch are the new needles at this point. If I wait to de-candle in June or later it would seem this new growth will have hardened off completely. Do I still wait til then to work these candles?
 

Steven

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Re: Candles
« Reply #2 on: April 12, 2010, 08:34 PM »
Next is one of 3 Mugo's I have. You can see that every candle on this one, and my other 2 if you could see them, are pushing needles as well. Now I'm not all familiar with candle work on Mugo's or if it is recommended. But if these are treated about the same as JBP then these too will have completely hardened off by June or later. Do I let these go as well?
 

Steven

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Re: Candles
« Reply #3 on: April 12, 2010, 08:38 PM »
Up next is a JRP, my most advanced one. It is P. densiflora 'Aurea'. Had this grafted cultivar for almost 3 yrs now. Every candle on it is needling out too. Again should be hardened off by June or later. Keep waiting til then?

And yes I am anticipating all you odd-color cultivar haters  :D to let me have it
 

Steven

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Re: Candles
« Reply #4 on: April 12, 2010, 08:42 PM »
Last is one of and best JWP(grafted onto Scot's stock). It's tiny candles have already disappeared under the cluster of new needles forming. Below is one of many clusters on the tree. I know you work JWP entirely different from other Pinus. When would I work this tree to get any back budding and hopefully smaller needles?
 

John Kirby

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Re: Candles
« Reply #5 on: April 12, 2010, 09:05 PM »
Just leave them alone, fertilize them really well, you are trying to strengthen the trees, thicken the trunks, etc.  Don't do anything with the JWP until fall and everything has hardened off and then you can prune it to control growth and stimulate back budding- remember we don't mess with JWP candles- we prune to control growth.
 

Steven

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Re: Candles
« Reply #6 on: April 12, 2010, 09:46 PM »
Ok john. I am ferting. Got 6-6-6 cakes on them plus dowsing them with fish emulsion. Added the 2nd round of cakes today. Missed last week to do that.
 

noissee

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Re: Candles
« Reply #7 on: April 14, 2010, 11:37 AM »
The way I understand it, and please correct me if I'm wrong, is that it doesn't matter if the needles have hardened off already when you cut off the new growth (de-candle) in mid-summer.
 

John Kirby

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Re: Candles
« Reply #8 on: April 14, 2010, 12:14 PM »
They will have. I think Boon is having the Florida folks decandle near the first of August.  Maybe he will chime in here. John
 

garywood

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Re: Candles
« Reply #9 on: April 14, 2010, 02:34 PM »
Steven and Noissee,
 John gave some very sage advice. Candle pruning is a finishing technique and caliper growth stops when candle pruning starts. There are much better techniques for developing trees where you get growth plus back budding. Now, when you do start de-candling, you have to know if the pine in question buds only once or multiple times a year. This is not necessarily specie specific. A lot has to do with local climate. For instance, red pine in some parts of the country can be trained like a black pine but in other parts (upper midwest) you might not be able to be as aggressive. As to timing: It's not judged by the new growth but how long the remaining growing season is. This is the primary factor in needle length. Prune to early,long needles. Prune to late, no new shoots or needles too short. this is dealing with multiple budding pines and single budders are completely different.
Wood
 

noissee

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Re: Candles
« Reply #10 on: April 14, 2010, 02:53 PM »
Tell me about it, Black Pine seems very simple compared to some of the native Fl species. I have a sand pine that I am experimenting with. It grows almost all year it seems.
 

bwaynef

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Re: Candles
« Reply #11 on: April 14, 2010, 07:31 PM »
Just leave them alone, fertilize them really well, you are trying to strengthen the trees, thicken the trunks, etc.
Steven and Noissee,
 John gave some very sage advice. Candle pruning is a finishing technique and caliper growth stops when candle pruning starts. There are much better techniques for developing trees where you get growth plus back budding.


Are the two of you suggesting that while in development, pines need not be candle pruned at all?
 

John Kirby

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Re: Candles
« Reply #12 on: April 14, 2010, 07:56 PM »
Wayne these trees are essentially seedlings. They still have needles all the way back to the trunk. If you know how big the tree will end up being, you can cut candles on the branches that you know you want to keep, assuming that you keep them open to sunlight. I will decandle seedlings (but not remove needles) when one or two years old to stimulate budding on the trunk, but then let er rip. The problem I see with these and most other seedlings is that they are never wired to get any real movement and all effort to force apparent movement comes from clip and grow.

John