Bald cypress (Taxodium Distichum) question.

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Bald cypress (Taxodium Distichum) question.

Post  JustinJames on Sun May 12, 2013 3:36 am

I live in okeechobee florida, what would be the best time to root prune and repot a bald cypress? And when I do root prune how then should I defoliate (how much?) or should I do that at all?

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Re: Bald cypress (Taxodium Distichum) question.

Post  JimLewis on Sun May 12, 2013 11:00 am

The best time is past, but these are vigorous trees. I'll let the other south Fla. folks give advice as to whether it is still possible down there.

Moving to Questions.

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Re: Bald cypress (Taxodium Distichum) question.

Post  jgeanangel on Sun May 12, 2013 12:23 pm

I suspect all of the FLA folks will tell you not to repot at this point in the season. Here in SC, I regularly repot my BC in June and July...I defoliate the entire tree, prune, wire and then repot with a 100% success over the last 10 years. I do not put them back into full sun until the new buds break and then I ease it back into full sun over a week or so. Your mileage may very but Good Luck!!!
John

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Re: Bald cypress (Taxodium Distichum) question.

Post  JustinJames on Sun May 12, 2013 9:42 pm

jgeanangel wrote:I suspect all of the FLA folks will tell you not to repot at this point in the season.

So when is the right time?

BTW John, I love your youtube videos.

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Re: Bald cypress (Taxodium Distichum) question.

Post  jgeanangel on Sun May 12, 2013 10:23 pm

in the early spring, after buds start to swell but before they break, is the preferred repotting time for most anything deciduous.

Glad you like the videos!
John

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Re: Bald cypress (Taxodium Distichum) question.

Post  JustinJames on Tue May 14, 2013 4:14 pm

Every bald cypress I have owned has gnarly roots that are very hard to work with. I've watched almost every video on your channel @John Geanangel but I'm still confused. Would you mind making a bonsai "noob" friendly video on root pruning BC trees?

From what I have done sadly killed one of my nicest trees. I cut the roots in all ways but the right way. So any advice on this topic would be much appreciated.

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Re: Bald cypress (Taxodium Distichum) question.

Post  jgeanangel on Tue May 14, 2013 6:02 pm

There is no magic to it. If your trees are healthy and vigorous I wouldn't be afraid to repot BC nearly anytime but winter. Of course all the folks in FLA will tell you that is the only time to repot so maybe it is a difference in winter temps??? IDK

Of course the only time I repot is when a tree is root bound. I will remove the tree and try to comb out all the long roots...esp if they have grown around and around in the container. Once combed out, I cut everything off that is outside of the main mass of the rootball. With BC, I almost always use a water hose to help remove old soil and then place the tree in the new container making sure it is securely tied to the container (no wiggling in the new pot). Finish filling with soil making sure that all air pockets are removed and filled with soil...water well and then sit in the shade until the new buds begin to open.

all that said there is no substitute for seeing it done in person...check with a local club or bonsai vendor in your area and see if someone will let you sit in on repot session.

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Re: Bald cypress (Taxodium Distichum) question.

Post  JustinJames on Tue May 14, 2013 8:23 pm

The only reason I'm repotting the BC trees are because I purchased them from a nursery and they are in nursery pots. And each one has very large thick roots that are close to impossible to comb or rake out... I've searched and searched for a topic (in grave detail) on BC roots. If you know a good link please post. A video would be nice too Wink Thanks again, John.

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Bald Cypress roots

Post  dbull on Tue May 14, 2013 8:39 pm

I too would love to see a video or a better detail on root pruning a baldy. I am taking a big BC and removing alot of the main root this year to get it into a 2 gal pot which is sitting in water almost to the rim of the pot. I soaked the root 1 day in water with B12 vitamin. Potted in heavy mix of miracle grow potting soil and my regular bonsai mix. Its been 1 week, so far buds are still coming out. I cut at least 8" off of the main root. We will see what happens. I am not going to do anything else this yr. Tree is topped off at 36". 3" dia trunk 6" up and 7" root spread at soil level. I will let everyone know how this goes in about a month or so.

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Re: Bald cypress (Taxodium Distichum) question.

Post  Billy M. Rhodes on Tue May 14, 2013 9:21 pm

I would not do any serious work on a Bald Cypress in May. Although we are having some cool weather today, it will be 90 or higher over the weekend and a potted cypress will be stressed enough.


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Re: Bald cypress (Taxodium Distichum) question.

Post  nickalpin on Wed May 15, 2013 3:38 pm

I repotted three bald cypress mid summer (before I knew better) a few years back. Two survived (I'm near Orlando). If you want to be safe, wait until late winter/early spring (as has been suggested). Untangling roots on a nursery tree won't be practical and would likely test your sanity. I've just gone at them with a reciprocating saw. You can slip pot now if you're at all concerned with tree health. I stand mine in a kiddie pool, they love it and so do mosquitoes.

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Re: Bald cypress (Taxodium Distichum) question.

Post  JustinJames on Wed May 15, 2013 5:59 pm

nickalpin wrote:... and would likely test your sanity.

Yes, yes it did! LOL xD Well the BC that I butchered the roots (Last week) is starting to sprout new buds, but the folliage that I left on the tree seems to be dying off. Does that mean my tree will live?


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Re: Bald cypress (Taxodium Distichum) question.

Post  nickalpin on Wed May 15, 2013 6:22 pm

Zenergy Bonsai wrote:
Yes, yes it did! LOL xD Well the BC that I butchered the roots (Last week) is starting to sprout new buds, but the folliage that I left on the tree seems to be dying off. Does that mean my tree will live?

With growth popping on your BC, the chances of survival increase. I've been tricked before and prematurely pushed some trees further than they were ready for and I lost them. I'd just let it grow for a couple seasons. If you're starting with nursery stock, you won't have the recovery periods that collected trees seem to require. It may be worth experimenting with letting it sit in a container of water. A number of my BC have growth that's basically out of hand, absurd growth over the last two months.

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Re: Bald cypress (Taxodium Distichum) question.

Post  JustinJames on Sun May 19, 2013 3:14 am

I've been soaking it and there are tons of new buds poping up all over it. xD I think she'll live.

I know this question is off topic, but where can I find a page with all the info on different tree species and the best time to repot, root prune, and so on?

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Re: Bald cypress (Taxodium Distichum) question.

Post  Billy M. Rhodes on Sun May 19, 2013 9:58 am

Zenergy Bonsai wrote:I've been soaking it and there are tons of new buds poping up all over it. xD I think she'll live.

Cypress will pop new buds on a log with no roots. Be patient.

I know this question is off topic, but where can I find a page with all the info on different tree species and the best time to repot, root prune, and so on?

No such thing, because the times vary with where you live. Your best resource is a local club. South Florida has its own rules.

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Bald cypress agressive root cutting

Post  dbull on Sun Jun 16, 2013 9:21 pm

Hello, Well is been at least 6 weeks or more and my cypress is doing great, full of growth. I cut at least 8 inchs of main root off to fit it into a 2 gal pot. It has been sitting in a large bucket of water every day. Planted in a mix of peat, bonsai mix and potting soil. This is a follow up on my first post. I hope this is in the right place. Next yr I will repot into bonasi pot and do a major topping and design. gary

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Re: Bald cypress (Taxodium Distichum) question.

Post  Marty Weiser on Mon Jun 17, 2013 12:41 am

I would give it a full year of growth in the 2 gallon pot before moving to a bonsai pot in the spring of 2015. It may well be going on stored energy right now so a full growing season to build reserves before the the next major root work. This is the approach I took with mine and it is doing very well. Of course, I have a short growing season and have to provide winter protection so you may not need the extra time in Florida.

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Re: Bald cypress (Taxodium Distichum) question.

Post  JustinJames on Mon Jun 17, 2013 8:34 pm

Is it safe to style (major branch pruning, jin/shari, and wiring) my bald cypress right now?  We're having some really hot days here in Florida, hotter than it should be... And if I style the tree now will I still be able to repot this winter, or will that be too much stress for it?

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Update...

Post  JustinJames on Wed Jun 19, 2013 3:14 am

So I just got off work and was checking my trees out when I noticed this...



What are they, and why are they there?  
They're only in spots that I pruned the branches...  

The main question is WHAT ARE THEY?

Here is the tree in question:

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Re: Bald cypress (Taxodium Distichum) question.

Post  ScottB1 on Thu Jun 20, 2013 12:46 pm

Looks like  cypress twig gall midge.

http://entnemdept.ufl.edu/creatures/orn/trees/cypress_twig_gall_midge.htm


It's nothing to worry about - just clip it off.  There's no danger to the health of the tree.


Scott

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Re: Bald cypress (Taxodium Distichum) question.

Post  JustinJames on Thu Jun 20, 2013 4:54 pm

Thanks for the reply, Scott.  

No one answered my question about wiring, pruning, and adding jin/shari to my BC this time of year, so I went ahead and did it.  Here is a photo.  I haven't added the jin/shari yet.  Advice will be appreciated.


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Re: Bald cypress (Taxodium Distichum) question.

Post  ScottB1 on Thu Jun 20, 2013 6:44 pm

It's ok to wire now, but ...

Consider saving your major structural wiring for time when your tree is dormant.  Summertime wiring is for wiring into place spring growth before it hardens off.  

In terms of your tree, I think you've done a nice job.  Major flaw in the tree is that the lack of taper in the lower 1/2 of the trunk, the uniform branch sizes, the lack of taper in the branches, and the lack of branching close to the trunk presents the image of a young tree.  The good news is that bald cypress are vigorous in your area, so most of the problems with the branching can be fixed fairly quickly by letting it grow A LOT until the branches reach desired thickness and then cutting back hard.  Repeat, combined with wiring, to build taper and branch structure.  Don't be in a hurry to put it into a bonsai pot until your primary branch structure is established.

The trunk will be harder to correct.  Your choice is to live with it, or cut back the trunk hard to develop taper.  Process is the same - cut back hard and train a new leader.  Let it grow until it reaches the desired thickness, and repeat to develop taper.  If this is your goal, consider planting it in the ground for this process as it will accelerate the growth.

Scott


Last edited by ScottB1 on Thu Jun 20, 2013 6:47 pm; edited 2 times in total (Reason for editing : Typo)

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Re: Bald cypress (Taxodium Distichum) question.

Post  JimLewis on Fri Jun 21, 2013 1:36 pm

That is the gall formed by a midge. It won't kill the tree, but the leaf beyond the gall will probably turn brown and die.  I just removed and destroyed those leaves when I lived where the gall was existent. 

I think you will give more of the impression of age to your tree if you shorten those branches a LOT.  Maube by 2/3.

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hi all

Post  tap pi lu on Fri Jun 21, 2013 1:43 pm

all you may helps me methods mirror it from branch cut

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Re: Bald cypress (Taxodium Distichum) question.

Post  JustinJames on Fri Jun 21, 2013 7:08 pm

JimLewis wrote:I think you will give more of the impression of age to your tree if you shorten those branches a LOT.  Maube by 2/3.


I can see you point.  And ground planting will create a better taper?  (on any tree)

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Re: Bald cypress (Taxodium Distichum) question.

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