Japanese Black Pine question

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Japanese Black Pine question

Post  jhogan9600 on Sun Oct 06, 2013 7:15 pm

Hi,
I am new to bonsai and was hoping someone could give me some advice here. I just purchased three Japanese Black Pine (Pinus thunbergiana) seedlings. They are about 24" tall and approximately the diameter of a pencil or a little bigger. Should I pot them temporarily in nursery pots or until next spring, or should I go ahead and put them in bonsai pots now? I have done some reading and have a basic set of bonsai tools to work with, and I've potted on small juniper that seems to be doing well. That's the extent of my bonsai experience. Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
Thanks,
John

jhogan9600
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Re: Japanese Black Pine question

Post  DirkD on Sun Oct 06, 2013 9:57 pm

Hi John,

JBP are great trees to develop into bonsai.
There's much written about training black pine seedlings into bonsai.
My advise would be, try to read as much as possible about growing JBP.

Try these:
http://www.evergreengardenworks.com/pines.htm
http://www.evergreengardenworks.com/pines2.htm
Or, maybe less discouraging:
http://home.comcast.net/~okamigardens/Articles/DevelopingPines.htm

DirkD
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Re: Japanese Black Pine question

Post  jhogan9600 on Sun Oct 06, 2013 11:33 pm

Thanks, Dirk. This is very helpful. I can see already that I need to change their soil. Thanks again!

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Re: Japanese Black Pine question

Post  Auballagh on Tue Oct 08, 2013 12:56 am

Hello 'JHogan',
I see you are from 'South Eastern Virginia'.....  Tidewater?  We have a pretty good Club here, the Virginia Bonsai Society (VBS), with some members that have very nice Japanese Black Pines as Bonsai.  Learning what works well, and may work best in this particular area for growing various species of trees, can definitely save you some frustration later.
Please PM if interested, and I can fill you in on plenty of information about the VBS. Smile

Auballagh
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Re: Japanese Black Pine question

Post  Marty Weiser on Tue Oct 08, 2013 2:22 am

I tend to slip pot new fall acquisitions since they are often very rootbound. Loosen the soil around the sides and bottom of the rootball and put it into a container that is about 50% larger in diameter and about the same depth with reasonable bonsai soil - perhaps a little smaller size than optimal if the rootball is very compacted. I also poke a chopstick into the main rootball from the top if it is really compact. I find that this allows the roots to grow out into the new soil a bit in the late fall and early spring so that the spring repot is easier. If the old rootball is not particularly compact I may even allow it to grow in that pot for a full year before repotting. However, in general, I believe in repotting a new tree soon after I get it so I have started on growing a good root system. Most of the time I find it takes longer to grow good roots with a decent spread than to grow a good top. Plus, if it is nursery stock and a screw up the repotting I have not lots a great deal of top work.

Marty Weiser
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Re: Japanese Black Pine question

Post  jhogan9600 on Tue Oct 08, 2013 11:00 am

Auballagh, I'm in Windsor. I'll pm you later today. Marty, thanks for the information. They are indeed root bound, so I will correct this over the weekend. Thanks to all for the replies... Learning lots here.

jhogan9600
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