general seedling cut back question

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general seedling cut back question

Post  kevin stoeveken on Wed Jan 21, 2015 1:22 pm

i stuck a pitanga seed in some soil about 10 weeks ago and surprisingly, it took off like a rocket, albeit a reeeeeeaaly skinny rocket...
(actually a pair of skinny rockets out of one one seed)



as you can see in the picture, i am needing to provide support and was wondering what some thoughts are in regards to reducing the height at such an early stage, or whether i should just continue to support it as it gets taller and taller until it gets thick enough to support itself.

after this question, i will post a progress report in about 3-5 years Wink





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Re: general seedling cut back question

Post  Khaimraj Seepersad on Wed Jan 21, 2015 5:33 pm

http://ibonsaiclub.forumotion.com/t12772p75-american-bonsai-at-the-nc-arboretum

Kevin,

Scroll down just before halfway, ask Arthur how long.
Best of luck.
Laters.
Khai.....

* For the fruit with a horrible taste - yucky - Laughing

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Re: general seedling cut back question

Post  kevin stoeveken on Wed Jan 21, 2015 6:24 pm

khai - that is the very tree i obtained the seed from...
(i ate the surrounding fruit and didnt find it too disagreeable)

however, that tree was not grown from seed...
(at least not under arthur's watch as it was one of the original donations)

and besides, i wouldn't really want to bother him with such a trivial question as i really do mean it as a question about seedlings in general, though if someone knows about pitangas in particular, i am open to that feedback as well.

thanks !!!



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Re: general seedling cut back question

Post  Tom on Wed Jan 21, 2015 6:28 pm

beer city snake wrote: just continue to support it as it gets taller and taller until it gets thick enough to support itself.


Cutting back at this point would just set it back.

Tom
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Re: general seedling cut back question

Post  kevin stoeveken on Wed Jan 21, 2015 6:38 pm

thanks tom - trouble is, i see absolutely no thickening at all near the base...
though i did read that some wind on it will encourage and trigger strengthening hormones in the stalk, so i have begun that.

also wonder how in the hell they make it in nature with that type of growth scratch

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Re: general seedling cut back question

Post  Khaimraj Seepersad on Wed Jan 21, 2015 11:40 pm

Kevin,

Arthur should have some facts about how old, how it was grown, and that would allow you to work with a perhaps ball park figure.

I have one, had it for about say 20 years, still in the 1 gallon it was given to me in, and the trunk is only 1" [ 2.5 cm ]and it has fruited every year. It is no match for the flavour of a West Indian Cherry [ Malpighia e. ] Laughing

You will probably have to figure out how to come close to ground growing and chances are it is Sub-Tropical [ up to zone 9 ]

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eugenia_uniflora

http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/fp202

It is easy to grow, likes full sun and in your case some sort of large 3' [ 1m ] but shallow [ 6" - 15 cm ] pot, as we have discovered if you cannot ground grow, most potted trees seem to prefer nothing deeper than 6", just lots of shallow root spread.
Must be how water disperses through the ground as opposed to a pot.

Not much else to say, but you can try the Australian idea of in a colander [ large one we can get up to 2' [ 61 cm ] in plastic for about $2.50 US easily ] or just drill holes in a large plastic bath tub, and when you match no chance of frost and until zone 9 conditions in late Autumn, bury it in an area conditioned to match Bonsai soil for "ground growing."

Or try the colander at max size, fertilise, frequently and see how that goes.
Trunk thickness and root distribution, with a chance at the first 6 branches.
Good Luck.
Laters.
Khai......

Khaimraj Seepersad
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Re: general seedling cut back question

Post  kevin stoeveken on Thu Jan 22, 2015 12:24 pm

thanks khai... if i remember correctly from arthurs talk in milwaukee, the arboretum came into that first large donation in a sort of "as is w/ little info" condition... i believe it was a deceased persons collection and the surviving spouse just let them sit for quite a while as they didnt know how to (or desire to) care for them... so again, i won't bother arthur with this...

however, your bits of info are very helpful...
i wont have room to ground grow it come spring, but i can get it into something to approximate the conditions you describe...
and then just continue to support it until it can do so itself.

again - thanks !

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Re: general seedling cut back question

Post  Leo Schordje on Fri Jan 23, 2015 5:31 pm

Hi Kev
Generally with seedlings, of trees that do back bud on old wood, you would just let them grow without pruning until the trunks are near the diameter you want for your finished tree. This advice would say - don't cut.

But your growth is weak and spindly, due to our short winter days and the dim winter sun. I would be tempted to chop pretty low, just before I put them outside for the summer. So that the next round of growth will be the stronger, more sturdy growth one would get with full sun. For the summer growth, reduce the branching to just the leader and one low sacrifice branch to help thicken the lower trunk, so you eventually will have taper, instead of a cylinder.

With my pomegranate - I always end up removing any growth that happens under lights in winter, because it is always too weak to be in balance with the rest of the tree. That is why I began forcing it to stay dormant, by putting it in cold storage, even though it could be grown all winter if I chose to do so.

With things like pines that don't back bud easily, a round of candle pruning early to get low branches in place is frequently done before letting the leader grow out to thicken the trunk. This is because by the time the trunk is thick enough to style, the lower section will be too mature to back bud. But these are a whole different issue for a different thread.

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Re: general seedling cut back question

Post  kevin stoeveken on Fri Jan 23, 2015 8:04 pm

solid advice that seems to make sense...
as always, thanks leo !

btw - i cant wait to tell you about my trip to top tropicals for the allusive ayahuasca...
lets just say it was humorous at best and fruitless at worst Rolling Eyes Wink

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