I posted a few photos of a black pine back in June and asked about how to treat a growing pine. How and when to candle cut when developing the pine. It seems that post was lost in your recent reboot. I wanted to report on what had happened since June.
This was the full tree on June 8, 2016.
These are the small, lower branches I want to keep alive for future growth.
This is another closeup of the small branches.
And this is what vigor there was on the top of the tree at the same time.
What I did was to cut the top growth to about half of what it was. I cut off one of two strong leaders and left the one leader long. The small branches were candle cut at this time hoping to get bud back and keep these shorter. Cutting back the upper vigor was an attempt to give more strength to the lower branches.
This was the tree the end of November at the end of the growing season.
The upper growth has filled out but is smaller than it would have been if it hadn’t been cut back.
This is more of the strong growth on top. My fingers are at the beginning of last springs growth, a fully developed candle and a strong second candle from mid summer growth.
The lower candle growth.
And again the lower branches.
There was very little secondary growth on the lower branches, but they are still alive. It seems the upper vigor reduction was not enough to push much growth down this low, but at least they are still alive and active.
I plan to continue with this study next year and plan to make a major “trunk chop” to bring the tree to about 5 inches or less. The thought is to direct all of next years growth into these small lower branches and redirect the top of the tree to be one of the short active buds that is on the trunk now.
The question I would like to know is when is the best time to make a large cut on a tree like this? My guess is it should it be done shortly before the first growth in the spring. I don’t plan on a repotting this year, just to keep the vigor in the tree for stronger growth next year.
Anything else to be aware of in the next year of growing?
Thanks for letting me share with you. Michael