The time is getting much closer now for all these JBPs to be decandeled. Most will be done from early July to mid July since most are shohin size. A few of the bigger ones will be done within a week or two from now.
I'm a n00b...so, I think I de-candled much too early? (always saw on YT, that mid-May to early June was the best time to decandle)...
I de-candled around mid-May iirc. Only the longest candles, 2-4" long. Not many at all, only maybe 10-20 candles per tree (probably only 5-10% of the candles, because it's a big garden/niwaki tree). I did it early because I noticed a few of the candles were starting to harden off already.
My 2 trees are 4-5' tall garden (trained) JBPs, 2.75-3.25" trunk, 6-7 levels of branch tiers, maybe 15-20 years old (not sure..they're pretty mature though).
(I also have 4 baby saplings, 7yo I think).
Since you're in the same OC area... when is the best time to de-candle? Late-June or early-July?
Did I make a grave mistake by cutting the (only a couple) candles too soon in May?
Are you supposed to decandle 100% of the tree and EVERY single bit of new-growth/new-candle (any candle with new needles) down to a closer node?
Or, is only decandling the most vigorous/longest and perhaps the medium ones too, sufficient (let's say, maybe only 10-20% of the tree)? (and just leaving the candles alone, the ones that are hardly even 0.5-1" long)
...My foliage right now looks pretty much exactly like the OP's picture... although, mine is niwaki style, very tall, and the branch pads/tiers have a lot more space between them (at least +1' of spacing between the branches).
Additionally... I performed "Momiage" (needle plucking down to only 3-6 pairs per tip) on them last late-December. I assume this is a good time for momiage (from my research), correct?
At noob (sorry, can't read or type your screen name) - When you decandle JBP depends on the number of days before first frost for northerners, The warmer the climate the later in the year you should decandle. I am in zone 5b and have a growing season that is only about 110 days long, give or take a few days. We decandle during the first half of the month of June.
I tagged Adair because he can more precisely answer the question as to when you should decandle.