Japanese White Pine


(Vernon Howells) #1

Hi guys i’m new to this forum. Just got my first JWP and its a starter tree so many years ahead to turn this into a Bonsai. (Hoping) i’m very new to Bonsai and only learning. I have a Chinese Elm and many Ficus plants.

I live in Scotland does anyone here from the UK or Scotland and is growing a JWP? also can i repot it into a more suitable substrate (free drainage) or is too late?


(Jeremiah Lee ) #2

Nice to have you here! Generally speaking the best time to re-pot a tree is in early spring before a big flush of growth.


(Vernon Howells) #3

Searched the forum and it seems JWP isn’t that common alot of posts on JBP?

Also finding more good articles on JBP rather than JWP is that because thet are similar except for single and multiple flush?


(Vernon Howells) #4

Just i pinch the candles or leave the pine to grow freely to thicken up the trunk and branches?

Can’t find anything on development pines on what to do at this stage


(Jonas Dupuich) #5

You’re right about the ratio white to black pine posts - it’s way easier to find information on black pines than white.

White pine care is different than black pine care. One example - no decandling white pines.

At the most basic level, care includes cutting old needles in summer, cutback and wiring in fall, and repotting in early spring.

I’ve written just a bit on the topic - you can find the posts here:
https://bonsaitonight.com/tag/white-pine/

The main thing for your trees at this point will be selecting the best front, selecting the primary branches, and then repotting during the dormant season to start getting the trees into bonsai soil. Techniques specific to white pines will come into play more as the tree develops.


(Vernon Howells) #6

Ah thankyou for the reply.

I’m a bit unsure of how this top branch is turning out or infact will i pinch all top candles in half?


(Jonas Dupuich) #7

If you want the trunk to thicken, you can let the top grow. If the trunk is as thick as you want it to be, you can pinch the candles in half.


(Vernon Howells) #8

The trunk is very thin and so are the branches long and thin. So am i best not to do anything then and let it grow?


(Raymond Mack) #9

Let it grow and you don’t have to do anything else this season but enjoy. Full sun and fertilize every 2 weeks.

Also, they like to be kept on the dry side. Does your region get lots of rain? If so you may want to put it under cover (but outside) in the winter so it’s not sopping wet for months.

Be conservative in your cultivation and training techniques, JWP are touchy bonsai subjects esp for beginners. Enjoy your pine.


(Vernon Howells) #10

Hi i will indeed.

Its currently in a pot with this garden soil and i have better suitable substrate for it. Do you think its too late to repot? I live in the UK Scotland.

Yeh we do get rain but I wouldn’t say its an issue unless it rains for days which i will place it in my greenhouse.


(Jonas Dupuich) #11

Too late now for repotting. Best to repot white pine right before the spring shoots begin to elongate at the end of winter.


(Vernon Howells) #12

Yep so i’ve just learned.

I know it was mentioned to leave my JWP to grow another year. If i want to thicken up the trunk and branches, am i best to leave it all grow even if the top is growing stronger? Will i not need to balance the top out?


(Jonas Dupuich) #13

What to let grow or not is a bigger topic - here’s one place to start reading on the topic: http://www.bssf.org/articles-and-stories/care-of-japanese-black-pine-stages-of-development/


(Vernon Howells) #14

Interesting read tah!

I have a few branches that are long and no back budding. So i need to promote back budding on longer thinner branches, to do this I’ve learnt to let the candle grow and mature then cut it?


(Jonas Dupuich) #15

Grafting is an alternative to getting back buds - or your best recourse when back buds don’t appear.

It might be useful to visit a local bonsai club to get branch-by-branch feedback about where to go from here and to help make a plan for the tree’s future.


(Vernon Howells) #16

Yeh I’m visiting my local club in a few weeks!

Thanks dude


(Vernon Howells) #17

Quick question which i’m struggling to find.

When fall comes and i want to reduce a branch how far do i cut back too? Another bud etc?


(Jonas Dupuich) #18

I typically aim to cut back to where another branch is growing as white pines don’t always produce new buds between internodes.


(Vernon Howells) #19

Ok dude very much appreciated. I small branches inside my JWP but have no buds or candles, is that bad news?

I watched your live stream on Facebook was that you over the weekend?


(Jonas Dupuich) #20

Your trees look healthy - just how I’d expect for young specimen. In general, there will be more, and longer, shoots (candles) on that upper and outside branches than there will be on the interior branches. Because of this, one of the main goals of pine development is balancing vigor across the tree.

And yes, that was me in the Facebook Q&A - thanks for tuning in!