Japanese Black Pine Health

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Japanese Black Pine Health

Post  -Jamie- on Sat Apr 16, 2016 4:56 pm

Hi everyone,

I have a shohin Japanese Black Pine that I recently bought, and it's not in the best of health. The upper branches are doing very well, and have new growth on them, but a couple of the lower branches don't have new growth on them, and only a few straggling needles.

So, I'm trying to stimulate growth in the lower branches and I'm not sure how. Should I decandle some of the top branches to stimulate growth on the lower ones? Or should I leave it alone for a season or two, and simply let it grow however it will, in order to regain strength?

And lastly, the soil is compacted, so I wasn't sure if I should repot it or not. Repotting would certainly be a shock, and not help matters, but better soil might allow for more root growth. However, the fact that the top of the tree is strong seems to imply that the roots are ok, at least for now.




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Re: Japanese Black Pine Health

Post  Leo Schordje on Sat Apr 16, 2016 9:00 pm

With photos, it is hard to be specific.

If lower branches are down to just a few needles, they might be too far gone, Just saying, but no reason to not try to save them.

Problem. A week JBP is a "only one insult per year" then leave it alone. Don't try to do everything you listed.

If the soil is bad, personally I would repot. Fix that problem first. Put it in the mix you use for your other pines. If you don't have a mix you normally use, pick an all inorganic mix. Sift it to eliminate fines. You need a free draining mix that allows good air penetration. Repot the tree, Then put it in the sun and leave it alone, no decandling. No needle pulling, no nothing. Get the roots growing.

Once you get roots growing, a year or two later you will get back budding. And you can then begin decandling and other techniques. But first you got to get the roots back into shape.
Leo Schordje

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