I am new to bonsai and got some seeds through a company on the internet. One of the seeds I got and planted is the Pinus Aristata. I am posting a current picture after three weeks. I’m not sure what to do next. If the other seeds sprout, I’ll post again…
[Repot now, after summer or next year?] Pinus Mugo Bonsai Grown From Seeds - 4 months old now
Once they harden off a bit make sure to cut the taproot when you transplant into an inorganic medium. Try to minimize pruning at least for the first few years, this species can grow really fast and thicken up pretty nicely if you don’t mess with it. I made that mistake with my seedlings about 5 years ago and I feel like they are just now recovering. I think it’s because this species tends to retain its needles for a long time, so its pretty traumatic when they are removed. In nature they can retain a set of leaves for up to 20 years!
The other downside to the long leaf retention is that they can look a little funny; sometimes they’re called foxtail pines because the needles hang around so far back down the branch. But I think once a branch is long enough it’s OK to thin old needles. The upshot is that they backbud like crazy, and the needles are naturally quite short. I think this species requires a lot of patience, but has the potential to be a really beautiful specimen, similar to Japanese white pine but with a distinctly alpine feel. Good luck!
Am not sure if they’re indoors now or not, but at some point they’ll have to go outside where they can get some sun.
Thanks for the advice! They will be indoors until about May. Can I separate the individual seedlings?
Right now, they are indoors. I’m in Zone 6, MA. I can’t get them outside until at least May. I was planning on using a grow light and afan to toughen them up.
I like to let them develop a second set of needles before you separate them to individual pots. They are stronger then to recover from trimming the tap root as has been suggested. Give them extra light or sun in a window when you can. I often germinate indoors and keep in till May and the risk of frost is past.
Have Fun, they will be neat to watch develop.