Species Specific > Japanese Black Pine Bonsai Discussion

Japanese Red Pine buds

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Brian Van Fleet:
Yours doesn't look very happy.  Maybe with better soil and siting, next year will be better.
Here is a JRP from seed, taken a couple weeks ago.

This is a moderately healthy 25 yo JRP, pictures taken today. Wire removed and candle cut this summer.  If not candle cut, needles would be 4" long, rather than <2" now. Tree could likely use a bit less water and more sun light. Interior of new needles are a bit light.

Sorry, not so good with iPhone posting. Picture rotated, don't know how to fix that.  Maybe I need to take sideways. Anyways, here is the pic of the buds.

I find JRP challenging, but understandable (if you are familiar with JBP) and rewarding. 

Initially, you need to get them healthy.  Good soil, light, and fertilizer.  When healthy, they tend to look like a mop with long needles, which can droop.  You can cut them in winter, if you can't stand it, like I do. 

Once healthy, you can candle cut in summer.  Usually 2 weeks later than JBP.  They respond well to candle cutting, and will back bud more than JBP and produce shorter, and more balanced needles.  Now they are ready to fine wire, and thinning out needles in winter for balance. 

Next spring, some candles may be very long (> 4").  I break these in half, which stops growth.  In late June I will candle cut all but the very weakest candles.  In 2-4 weeks, new candles form, which tend to be more balanced.  After 4 years of this treatment, you have the result in my earlier pictures. 

JRP, as with JBP are a year round project.  Get them strong, first.  Needle thinning, and candle cutting next and in several year cycles you will get a nice result.

Any discernible progress?


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