Clarification on JBP second flush growth handling

coh

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Just saw that Bjorn has posted a new video on how to manage the second flush growth on JBP. The video can be found here: Bjorn JBP Second Flush Video

He talks about going in and removing excess second flush shoots where necessary, i.e. where you've gotten more than 2 new shoots, reduce back to 2. No problem with that, but my question is about the timing. I was always under the impression that you should wait until the candles and needles are finished growing, because if you remove the excess candles too soon the remaining needles might grow too long. But Bjorn is talking about doing it now - I don't know about everyone else, but on my JBP the new shoots and needles are still growing and it looks like his are too. So what do people typically do - wait until later when all growth is done, or remove the excess shoots around this time? He claims if you wait you'll get a swelling at the location where > 2 shoots have developed.

Interested in hearing from @Adair M and @Brian Van Fleet as well as anyone else who has been working with JBP for a while. In the past I've waited till later in the season and never noticed any problem with swellings at those sites.
 

Brian Van Fleet

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Both are about the same in my experience. I tend to do it earlier, but if I can’t get to it, I’ll do it in the late fall.
 

coh

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Thanks for the input!
 

Clicio

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I wait. Among other things that allows strong shoots in a cluster to suppress the others so when you finally do the reduction those small, weaker shoots provide better ramification for the structure.
This technique sort of makes me wonder, doesn't it make the tree weaker on the long run?
 

Adair M

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This technique sort of makes me wonder, doesn't it make the tree weaker on the long run?
Yes. JBP are strong, vigorous trees, that if left to their own, they would produce long needles, and long internodes.

That’s not what we want for bonsai.

So these techniques help manage that energy to direct it in ways that we want. The tree can still produce excess growth, and we can manage that by removing the excess twigs.

The Japanese call this “balancing” the tree.

It’s not something that happens immediately. It takes several years of decandling, needle pulling, and shoot thinning to develop an overall canopy where the energy is evenly distributed. But once it happens, the trees tend to keep the balance as long as they are properly managed.
 

Cofga

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You must have missed the part where he said not to do this on a schedule but to wait until the sheaths at the base of the needles were starting to flake off. This should be about the point when they have hardened off. As Adair said this whole candle cutting process is a balancing act designed to prevent long internodes and long needles as well as promote ramification. If done properly to strong healthy trees it will stress them somewhat but then that is part of the process since this induced stress is what removes the excess energy that otherwise would go into long internodes and needles. The timing part is done at a critical point so the plants have just enough time to recover and harden off the new needles before fall/winter. Begin the process too early and you likely will end up with longer internodes and needles than planned. Start too late and they won’t complete the regrowth and hardening off process before fall/winter—timing is everything!
 

sorce

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There's never a reason to remove energy before it destroys design.

Sorce
 

coh

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You must have missed the part where he said not to do this on a schedule but to wait until the sheaths at the base of the needles were starting to flake off. This should be about the point when they have hardened off. As Adair said this whole candle cutting process is a balancing act designed to prevent long internodes and long needles as well as promote ramification. If done properly to strong healthy trees it will stress them somewhat but then that is part of the process since this induced stress is what removes the excess energy that otherwise would go into long internodes and needles. The timing part is done at a critical point so the plants have just enough time to recover and harden off the new needles before fall/winter. Begin the process too early and you likely will end up with longer internodes and needles than planned. Start too late and they won’t complete the regrowth and hardening off process before fall/winter—timing is everything!
Thanks for the reminder about the sheaths - I did hear him say that. Regardless, just from looking at the growth on his tree, it does not appear the needles have hardened off yet. They're still pale in comparison to the older needles and don't look like they've fully extended out from the shoot. Tough to be 100% certain without seeing the tree in person but considering where he is, I would think those needles won't have hardened off for a few more weeks...so my question was whether cutting the excess shoots off now (*) (as opposed to waiting for them to actually stop growing) would have a significant impact on the shoot and needle length of what remains. It sound like it probably wouldn't matter too much.

(*) "now" of course not referring to a strict calendar date but to the stage of growth of a particular tree.
 

roberthu

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Sheath dropping usually is an indicator of needles hardening off. At least for JWP. I didn’t pay much attention to his video because I thought the same like you did when I saw his tree and heard him saying if you don’t cut excess buds now you would get swell. I am a Mirai member so I may be biased but I am a believer of waiting until the new needles have hardened off before shoot selection. His tree didn’t look like the shoots were done elongating but I also don’t know the tree well enough.
 

Cofga

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Yes, as Ryan says there are 3 signs the foliage has hardened off, (1) the needles are a dark green, (2) the tips are sharp, and (3) solidification of needles at the sheath (which means the new needles won’t pull put easily of you pull on them). Mine here in Asheville have met these criteria so I removed the extra new shoots last week, aniut the same time that Bjorn shot his video.
 

Adair M

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Yes, as Ryan says there are 3 signs the foliage has hardened off, (1) the needles are a dark green, (2) the tips are sharp, and (3) solidification of needles at the sheath (which means the new needles won’t pull put easily of you pull on them). Mine here in Asheville have met these criteria so I removed the extra new shoots last week, aniut the same time that Bjorn shot his video.
Bjorn’s second shoots are not hardened off. They’re not all dark green yet, and, remember those shoots he said were too long? And he cut them in half? He said there was enough growing season left for them to grow new terminal buds for next spring. That means, they’re NOT hardened off!

I would be interested to know how long those needles get by Hallowe’en.

in my opinion, he decandled that tree too early. He said he did it in June. I think he should have waited until early July.

He’s young. He’s got time to figure it out! Lol!!!
 

Dav4

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Bjorn’s second shoots are not hardened off. They’re not all dark green yet, and, remember those shoots he said were too long? And he cut them in half? He said there was enough growing season left for them to grow new terminal buds for next spring. That means, they’re NOT hardened off!

I would be interested to know how long those needles get by Hallowe’en.

in my opinion, he decandled that tree too early. He said he did it in June. I think he should have waited until early July.

He’s young. He’s got time to figure it out! Lol!!!
Hey Man! Bjorn is a bit North of us up in TN, so he should de-candle a bit earlier then us, I'd guess. Also, my best bud Tyler told me to de-candle the last week of June for the big boys and the week of July 4th for the shohin... first time I've done it that early in GA, but looking forward to seeing the results ;)
 

roberthu

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Bjorn’s second shoots are not hardened off. They’re not all dark green yet, and, remember those shoots he said were too long? And he cut them in half? He said there was enough growing season left for them to grow new terminal buds for next spring. That means, they’re NOT hardened off!

I would be interested to know how long those needles get by Hallowe’en.

in my opinion, he decandled that tree too early. He said he did it in June. I think he should have waited until early July.

He’s young. He’s got time to figure it out! Lol!!!
I doubt he will show the tree again if the needles turn out super long. We shall see.
 

Adair M

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Hey Man! Bjorn is a bit North of us up in TN, so he should de-candle a bit earlier then us, I'd guess. Also, my best bud Tyler told me to de-candle the last week of June for the big boys and the week of July 4th for the shohin... first time I've done it that early in GA, but looking forward to seeing the results ;)
I’m going by the length of the needles on Bjorn’s tree. If they are as long as they are now, they’ll be a good bit longer when the first harden off.

Tyler agreed with me. Check our Line chat.
 

Dav4

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I’m going by the length of the needles on Bjorn’s tree. If they are as long as they are now, they’ll be a good bit longer when the first harden off.

Tyler agreed with me. Check our Line chat.
I did, and what he said there really didn't contradict what he told me.
 

Adair M

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I did, and what he said there really didn't contradict what he told me.
Decandling timing is something of a dark art! Lol!! Everyone has to figure out what works for them in their particular micro climate, their trees, Their repotting frequency, their watering practices, their fertilization, their sun exposure, temperatures, etc. Many, many factors enter in to it.
 

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