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Compiled Vance Wood on Mugo Pines

Lazylightningny

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Lazylightningny submitted a new resource:

Compiled Vance Wood on Mugo Pines - Posts compiled from Bonsai Nut by Vance Wood from 2010 onward on mugo pine care and development

Compiled Posts by Vance Wood on Mugo Pines

UPDATED WITH VANCE'S REVISIONS 8/13/2014

Vance, I have gathered posts you made on B-Nut over the years from the archives. I have consolodated this info below. I appreciate your sharing your years of experience with this species. Thanks, on behalf of all of us here at B-Nut...

Vance Wood on Mugos, from 2010 to present:
Posts taken from bonsainut.com archives

EVERY YEAR FOR 3 YEARS:
Cutting back this year’s new growth (extended...

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barrosinc

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can you edit this post later on?
I have the older version printed out with my bonsai stuff. Pure gold.
 

RVMcC

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I used the compiled notes to pot up a nursery stock Mugo I got earlier this spring into a pond basket (I have a JWP I potted up in a pond basket 2 yrs ago that has been doing fabulously. I will consider moving it to a real bonsai pot next spring.)

I sawed the root ball in half, and didn't find any thick downward growing roots. Gave the bottom a gentle rake to loosen up the feeder roots. My Mugo didn't have a lot of encircling roots. I loosened everything up around the edges, but I didn't have to trim much off. Then I put it into the pond basket with my standard mix of 1 pt Akadama, 1pt Pumice, 1 pt Lava, 1/2 pt pine bark, 1 cup horticultural charcoal.

One question I have about the notes, that I would appreciate feedback on. The notes say "You can remove approximately 1/2 of the foliage at this time." What does that mean? Plucking needles? Removing branches? Something else?

Thanks greatly for feedback.
RVMcc
 

Vance Wood

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I used the compiled notes to pot up a nursery stock Mugo I got earlier this spring into a pond basket (I have a JWP I potted up in a pond basket 2 yrs ago that has been doing fabulously. I will consider moving it to a real bonsai pot next spring.)

I sawed the root ball in half, and didn't find any thick downward growing roots. Gave the bottom a gentle rake to loosen up the feeder roots. My Mugo didn't have a lot of encircling roots. I loosened everything up around the edges, but I didn't have to trim much off. Then I put it into the pond basket with my standard mix of 1 pt Akadama, 1pt Pumice, 1 pt Lava, 1/2 pt pine bark, 1 cup horticultural charcoal.

One question I have about the notes, that I would appreciate feedback on. The notes say "You can remove approximately 1/2 of the foliage at this time." What does that mean? Plucking needles? Removing branches? Something else?

Thanks greatly for feedback.
RVMcc
Either way, you can remove a total of 50% and you should remove at least 30%.
 

RVMcC

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Either way, you can remove a total of 50% and you should remove at least 30%.
Thank you very much for the feedback! It is greatly appreciated. I did remove the downward growing needles, but left everything else as I was unsure of just what I should do. The tree definitely needs some branches removed. It is way too dense.

Thanks again,
RVMcC
 

Vance Wood

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Thank you very much for the feedback! It is greatly appreciated. I did remove the downward growing needles, but left everything else as I was unsure of just what I should do. The tree definitely needs some branches removed. It is way too dense.

Thanks again,
RVMcC
Remove some branches but no more than 50% and not in a straight path unless you desire a dead pathway through the trunk.
 

Lazylightningny

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Here is the mugo I purchased this last March. At that time, I removed approximately 30% of the foliage. Today, I sawed off the bottom half of the root ball, teased out the circling roots, and repotted into a 12" pond basket with standard bonsai soil. I didn't remove any more foliage. Watered it in and placed back in the sun. No ferts for a month or so. Let me know if I should remove any more foliage.

I'm having trouble finding a good line on this one. It has a huge knot at the top where a lot of branches sprout from. Most of the smaller ones I removed last spring. I could use some help finding a line.

First pic is the proposed front. Pic 2 is the front taken a little closer in. Side 2 is another possible front. Side 3 is the proposed back. Then side 4. Last pic is an oblique between side 4 and the proposed front.
 

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Vance Wood

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I think it should be OK, but without actually seeing and touching the tree that is really difficult to say.
 

RVMcC

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Remove some branches but no more than 50% and not in a straight path unless you desire a dead pathway through the trunk.
Thanks again. Here are a couple of pics of the before and after results. I adjusted the front slightly once I started pruning, so the before and after pics don't match in terms of the basket orientation. I think I removed between 40-50% of the original needle density.

RVMcC

20180708_154724_HDR.jpg20180708_171325_HDR.jpg
 

Jure_v

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I have question about Candling. There is statemenet i am not sure if i understand it right.

"When ready, in July I totally remove the new growth all the way down to the starting point from the current seasons growth plus about an eighth of an inch of the new stem."

So i should remove all new growth from this season and also 1/8inch of last year growth?
From other guide lines i havent read similar. Actually the opposite. You should leave a little of this year growth

Thanks :)
 

Vance Wood

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I have question about Candling. There is statemenet i am not sure if i understand it right.

"When ready, in July I totally remove the new growth all the way down to the starting point from the current seasons growth plus about an eighth of an inch of the new stem."

So i should remove all new growth from this season and also 1/8inch of last year growth?
From other guide lines i havent read similar. Actually the opposite. You should leave a little of this year growth

Thanks :)
You leave 1/8" of the new stem. The idea and process is to induce and abundance of back budding, even on to old wood. Mugos don't usually throw a second flush of growth so your best hope with trees like Mugo, Scots, and maybe Shore and Lodge Pole Pines is to focus on back budding. The logic is to allow the tree to build up a lot of energy and then force it to take all of that energy and put it somewhere else rather than building new growth you do not want. Does this work? Yes it does I have been using it on Mugos and Scotts Pines for years to ramify and reduce the length of needles.
 

Vance Wood

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I have question about Candling. There is statemenet i am not sure if i understand it right.

"When ready, in July I totally remove the new growth all the way down to the starting point from the current seasons growth plus about an eighth of an inch of the new stem."

So i should remove all new growth from this season and also 1/8inch of last year growth?
From other guide lines i havent read similar. Actually the opposite. You should leave a little of this year growth

Thanks :)
Yes you leave the 1/8" of the new stem right above the place where the new growth started, not needles or anything else, just 1/8" of the NEW STEM. It will have no needles or buds on it, just a little nub of a thing. The problem a lot of people have with Mugos is in mixing techniques. Decide on a path and stick to it, if you don't know ask.
 

Lazylightningny

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Yes you leave the 1/8" of the new stem right above the place where the new growth started, not needles or anything else, just 1/8" of the NEW STEM. It will have no needles or buds on it, just a little nub of a thing. The problem a lot of people have with Mugos is in mixing techniques. Decide on a path and stick to it, if you don't know ask.
Vance, isn't this a technique you don't use on a new nursery mugo? My understanding is that you wait a few seasons before beginning this technique.
 

RVMcC

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I think he means that you cut the candle down to 1/8 inch above where it started growing. So, leave a 1/8th inch stub. I have been using his advice one my 3 mugo's for the past couple of years, and I leave a stub with 2 or 3 pairs of new needles. My mugo's are doing really well.

I have question about Candling. There is statemenet i am not sure if i understand it right.

"When ready, in July I totally remove the new growth all the way down to the starting point from the current seasons growth plus about an eighth of an inch of the new stem."

So i should remove all new growth from this season and also 1/8inch of last year growth?
From other guide lines i havent read similar. Actually the opposite. You should leave a little of this year growth

Thanks :)
 
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