Browning needles on recently collected White Pine (assumed)

dinchigren

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Hello,
New to Pine Bonsai to the degree that I am not sure about species I collected about 5 weeks ago. I have collected them (yamadori) in Maine and put them in pots in my garden in Boston mid June, 2021.
Right now, about 5 weeks later, two of them show some brown needles. Those are pines in first two photos and I assume that is White Japanese pine. Anything I can do to help them survive?
I tried to collect as much roots as possible and put them in shallow pots with Premium bonsai soil while keeping about 30% of original soil. They are collected close to the lake. I keep them out of direct sun. I would appreciate any tips.

Pine in the last photo is Black pine, I think. That one is doing just fine. That one I have treated the same except that I have not use Bonsai soil but just ordinary soil with 30% of original soil. Not sure it that matters. In everything else they were treated the same.

Thanks in advance and thanks for opportunity to ask questions on this forum.
 

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Shogun610

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If you collected them in Maine the first two photos are Eastern White Pine, the last one might be Pitch? I can’t tell , but it usually has three needles originating from the sheath. I’m not too sure what the temperatures up there around June, are the buds swelling or did it already push the new growth out? You might have collected too late. As per soil use, I used puree pumice , but anything that would allow for good drainage , while maintaining acidic pH , or close to replicating the soul you collected the trees in.
 

Wires_Guy_wires

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Hmmm in general we dig coniferous species in spring or fall.
It's a bit of a tedious process and hard to get right the first time, so I think its good to view these as your learner plants.

The right soil is a big deal for pines, they get their strength from their roots, so it's best to have good soil ready before you dig anything up.

Browning needles are a worrying sign, those plants might not make it. But either way, you learned something and you'll do better in the future. For now, keep an eye out to not over water them. Let the soil dry out in between waterings, but not too dry. A wooden skewer, chopstick or even a pencil can help you in probing the soil moisture content. If you leave it in the soil, just take it out when you want to water and check if the wood is wet, damp or dry. Then decide if you should water or not.
 

Paradox

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black pines dont grow in the wild in Maine.

The first two Eastern White Pines and honestly they look like they are on their way out or already out the door.

The last one looks like a Red (Norway) pine if I'm seeing correctly that it has 2 needles per fascicle.
If its 3 needles then its a Pitch Pine. Both Norway and Pitch Pine grow in the wild in Maine
 

dinchigren

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If you collected them in Maine the first two photos are Eastern White Pine, the last one might be Pitch? I can’t tell , but it usually has three needles originating from the sheath. I’m not too sure what the temperatures up there around June, are the buds swelling or did it already push the new growth out? You might have collected too late. As per soil use, I used puree pumice , but anything that would allow for good drainage , while maintaining acidic pH , or close to replicating the soul you collected the trees in.
Thank you. With help from you and the others I have established that those with browning needles are Eastern White Pine, third one that is doing well is Red Norway pine.
Not sure if buds were swelling at time of collection Eastern White pine. I have attached some close up photos from today. Soil I use is premium soil with good drainage plus, like I said, about 30% of original soil. Would it make sense to lower PH value of soil and make it a bit more acidic? Again, just trying to keep them alive at this point.
 

dinchigren

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black pines dont grow in the wild in Maine.

The first two Eastern White Pines and honestly they look like they are on their way out or already out the door.

The last one looks like a Red (Norway) pine if I'm seeing correctly that it has 2 needles per fascicle.
If its 3 needles then its a Pitch Pine. Both Norway and Pitch Pine grow in the wild in Maine
Thanks for your help. Last one as 2 needles and it appears to be Red Norway pine. It is doing well and it seems like it will make it. I am not planning to do anything with it until next Spring. Short of mulching around it during the winter would you recommend anything else to increase rate of survival through winter? I am in New England, zone 5.
 

dinchigren

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Hmmm in general we dig coniferous species in spring or fall.
It's a bit of a tedious process and hard to get right the first time, so I think its good to view these as your learner plants.

The right soil is a big deal for pines, they get their strength from their roots, so it's best to have good soil ready before you dig anything up.

Browning needles are a worrying sign, those plants might not make it. But either way, you learned something and you'll do better in the future. For now, keep an eye out to not over water them. Let the soil dry out in between waterings, but not too dry. A wooden skewer, chopstick or even a pencil can help you in probing the soil moisture content. If you leave it in the soil, just take it out when you want to water and check if the wood is wet, damp or dry. Then decide if you should water or not.
Thank for advice on watering.
When you say "we dig coniferous species in spring or fall", do you mean in general or in Netherlands? What would be good months in Spring or in Fall to collect in zone 4? I would be collecting in zone 4 and potting conifers in zone 6 where I live.
 

Wires_Guy_wires

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Spring and fall are similar seasons everywhere, thankfully. So I mean in general.
I'm not good at using zones.
Pines produce new roots in fall and at the middle of spring, while the rest of the plant is more or less dormant. This is the ideal time to mess with their roots a little.

It depends on where you're at of course.. My fall is around september to november. Yours might be earlier or later. Same goes for spring.
If you move trees from one zone to another, the zone where they come from is the one that dictates your initial timeframe. Once they're out of the ground and into a pot, they'll adjust to the new zone within a year due to environmental triggers.
 

Paradox

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Thanks for your help. Last one as 2 needles and it appears to be Red Norway pine. It is doing well and it seems like it will make it. I am not planning to do anything with it until next Spring. Short of mulching around it during the winter would you recommend anything else to increase rate of survival through winter? I am in New England, zone 5.

Mulch it against the foundation of your house. Preferably north side.
 

sorce

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Welcome to Crazy!

Sorce
 

Paradox

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Thanks for your help. Last one as 2 needles and it appears to be Red Norway pine. It is doing well and it seems like it will make it. I am not planning to do anything with it until next Spring. Short of mulching around it during the winter would you recommend anything else to increase rate of survival through winter? I am in New England, zone 5.

I just noticed you are in/near Boston.
Let the tree get buried by snow. Snow is a great insulator.
 

MaciekA

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Thanks for your help. Last one as 2 needles and it appears to be Red Norway pine. It is doing well and it seems like it will make it. I am not planning to do anything with it until next Spring. Short of mulching around it during the winter would you recommend anything else to increase rate of survival through winter? I am in New England, zone 5.

You could also get a horticultural heating mat. Either a commercial grade one (if you have some dough to spend) or a more consumer-grade one (example: vivosun heating mats on amazon). The commercial-grade ones are able to keep target temperature easier when it's very cold, but both will cut down risk significantly. The tree sits outdoors or in an unheated greenhouse/etc all winter long, but on a heating mat. If you get one paired with a controller (which comes with a sensor) then you can "enforce" whatever temperature you want (at the bottom of your container, or wherever you put the sensor), whether to keep the roots just above freezing or keep em toasty at 80F or whatever (I go with the latter and it works wonders).

Heating mats are an absolute game changer for yamadori recovery even in the pacific northwest, where they're not even that urgently required. You can hit the ground running in spring with roots that kept growing / kept recovering after collection. Once I had initial successes with mats, I got several of them, and by the tail end of winter I try to have every square inch of every heating mat occupied by some tree that will benefit from root recovery assistance or frost protection, whether a collected tree or a recently-repotted tree (since frosts can often happen after repots). Saves you a lot of bonsai shuffle too.
 

dinchigren

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You could also get a horticultural heating mat. Either a commercial grade one (if you have some dough to spend) or a more consumer-grade one (example: vivosun heating mats on amazon). The commercial-grade ones are able to keep target temperature easier when it's very cold, but both will cut down risk significantly. The tree sits outdoors or in an unheated greenhouse/etc all winter long, but on a heating mat. If you get one paired with a controller (which comes with a sensor) then you can "enforce" whatever temperature you want (at the bottom of your container, or wherever you put the sensor), whether to keep the roots just above freezing or keep em toasty at 80F or whatever (I go with the latter and it works wonders).

Heating mats are an absolute game changer for yamadori recovery even in the pacific northwest, where they're not even that urgently required. You can hit the ground running in spring with roots that kept growing / kept recovering after collection. Once I had initial successes with mats, I got several of them, and by the tail end of winter I try to have every square inch of every heating mat occupied by some tree that will benefit from root recovery assistance or frost protection, whether a collected tree or a recently-repotted tree (since frosts can often happen after repots). Saves you a lot of bonsai shuffle too.
Great suggestion, however powering the mat on the exterior of the house would be challenging for me sinc there is no exterior power outlet. I just looked if they have solar or battery powered heat mats but it does not seems so.
Would pines survive winter in unheated basement? There is very little daylight but temperature does not go below freezing for sure. Or is keeping them outside a must in order for them to enter dormancy. Sorry I do not mean to take too much of your time.
 

Paradox

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Great suggestion, however powering the mat on the exterior of the house would be challenging for me sinc there is no exterior power outlet. I just looked if they have solar or battery powered heat mats but it does not seems so.
Would pines survive winter in unheated basement? There is very little daylight but temperature does not go below freezing for sure. Or is keeping them outside a must in order for them to enter dormancy. Sorry I do not mean to take too much of your time.

You dont want the temperature to go above 40 degrees to maintain dormancy. An unheated basement will probably be around 50-60 degrees.
 

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