Diagnosis please

abugoogoo

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Hi guys. Kinda a follow up to my post the other day... This is one of my Junipers. What is going on here? Is this needle browning/yellowing from the inside out a pest or a disease or am I an idiot and this is totally normal? I can't see any offending insects. I attached a bunch of pics, including one with some nice new growth that I just noticed. Thanks for the help.
 

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Esolin

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No expert, but this looks pretty normal to me. Junipers are essentially an elongating species, with new growth developing on the ends of branches and interior growth dying off once it's shaded out or too old for the tree to bother keeping. If there is excessive die-off, it can sometimes point to root issues/overwatering, but if you're seeing healthy new growth on most of the branches in balanced proportion to what's dying off, I'd assume the juniper is just shedding its 'old leaves'.
 

Shibui

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Old needles dying.
All leaves have a finite life span where they work well. After that the tree kills them in favor of new, younger leaves that work better. Juniper needles have a life of 2-3 years then turn brown. Nothing can stop that. As bonsai growers we need to ensure there is plenty of new shoots so that elongating branches can be cut back to maintain the overall size and shape of our bonsai.
Pruning is key to maintaining juniper bonsai.
 

abugoogoo

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Old needles dying.
All leaves have a finite life span where they work well. After that the tree kills them in favor of new, younger leaves that work better. Juniper needles have a life of 2-3 years then turn brown. Nothing can stop that. As bonsai growers we need to ensure there is plenty of new shoots so that elongating branches can be cut back to maintain the overall size and shape of our bonsai.
Pruning is key to maintaining juniper bonsai.
Thx for the info. This makes sense. I haven't really ever pruned it
 

abugoogoo

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The one spot looks like urine.

Sorce
LMFAO. I didn't pee on it, I promise. Its been raining like crazy so if they're using my juniper as a urinal, hopefully it will wash it off
 

sorce

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they're using my juniper as a urinal

Just once with some hot sun will cause that look.

That may also account for the slight tips yellowing.

The only "normal" is the ones brown to the base.
Though this abnormal is nothing to fret much over, lest you really needed that branch or it keeps happening.

Of course, urine is quite normal for me.

Is this kept situated where it could be sprayed?
Perhaps Iguana feces?

Sorce
 

abugoogoo

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Just once with some hot sun will cause that look.

That may also account for the slight tips yellowing.

The only "normal" is the ones brown to the base.
Though this abnormal is nothing to fret much over, lest you really needed that branch or it keeps happening.

Of course, urine is quite normal for me.

Is this kept situated where it could be sprayed?
Perhaps Iguana feces?

Sorce
I don't need that branch in particular, the problem is that this particular Juniper has pretty much been languishing in place for the past year since I repotted it... No new growth as far as I can tell. Now all of a sudden I'm getting massive browning, what everyone is telling me is normal, and it does seem that way, but the only new growth I've noticed in a year is the one pictured, and that's brand new. So basically, all the foliage is expired from what I gather. If I prune back all that's doing this, there will be very little left.

As far as Iguanas or any other animal, I suppose anything is possible, but they would have to go through an absolute minefield of aged Brazilian Rain trees and African Acacias with 2 inch thorns akin to nails to get to my Junipers... It would require them climbing directly over them to get access.
 

sorce

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None if this sounds normal.

I was first worried that is growth too late, but in Florida it may not be.
Still begs the question where did this come from and is it possibly in the wrong climate?

Sorce
 

abugoogoo

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Came from Dragon Tree Bonsai, less than an hour north of me, same Zone. Other Shimpaku I have from him are doing just fine. This one became a problem after I repotted, holding pattern x 1 year and now all the browning. Only difference is he raises them in garden soil, I switched it to 100% volcanic rock.
 

YukiShiro

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@abugoogoo 100% volcanic has no CEC(totally inert), and almost no water holding capability.
also south Florida is quite hot and humid, isn't it?
How often do you have to water the tree? I think you should move it to semi shade or even where it gets shade from just before mid day onward. Until you can repot it into a more water retentive mix with more CEC, so the plant has more ferts available and cooler soil. If it grows well again place it back into full sun. do you have any moss covering the growing medium?

show us some acacia!? xD

best regards
Herman
 

abugoogoo

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@abugoogoo 100% volcanic has no CEC(totally inert), and almost no water holding capability.
also south Florida is quite hot and humid, isn't it?
How often do you have to water the tree? I think you should move it to semi shade or even where it get's shade from just before mid day onward. Until you can repot it into a more water retentive mix with more CEC, so the plant has more ferts available and cooler soil. If it grows well again place it back into full sun. do you have any moss covering the growing medium?

show us some acacia!? xD

best regards
Herman
Yes sir, it's been itching me to repot. I have to wait for spring from what I understand, but I'm considering just doing it now with everything going on with it. It is in partial shade, I had it out in full sun for quite some time and I had to water it like crazy, much more than any of my other trees. No moss at this time, it gets burnt up too easily in the summer.
I'm gonna post a thread soon with the Acacias and the rain trees! I need to get them presentable, they've been growing out of control all summer.
 

Paradox

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Yea looks like mostly older, inner tips dying off. Normal for a juniper that isnt trimmed when it should be.
You also might have a touch of fungus/tip blight but nothing really worrisome at this point.
Otherwise it looks healthy and yea you should not repot it now. Do it in the spring just as the tips start to swell up with new spring growth.
 

abugoogoo

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Yea looks like mostly older, inner tips dying off. Normal for a juniper that isnt trimmed when it should be.
You also might have a touch of fungus/tip blight but nothing really worrisome at this point.
Otherwise it looks healthy and yea you should not repot it now. Do it in the spring just as the tips start to swell up with new spring growth.
Sounds good to me. Question, does the spring thing apply to South Florida? Spring/winter are largely undistinguishable from each other temperature wise, outside of maybe a week of nighttime temps in the 50's. Also, should I prune now?
 

Paradox

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Sounds good to me. Question, does the spring thing apply to South Florida? Spring/winter are largely undistinguishable from each other temperature wise, outside of maybe a week of nighttime temps in the 50's. Also, should I prune now?

Thats a good question. Do juniper see any kind of dormancy period there?
If its going to go into any kind of dormancy, I would not prune it now.
Junipers rely on thier foliage for energy storage for winter so pruning too much before dormancy isnt the best idea
If there is no dormancy, they how well do they survive over the years is also a good question.
 
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abugoogoo

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Thats a good question. Do juniper see any kind of dormancy period there?
If its going to go into any kind of dormancy, I would not prune it now.
Junipers rely on thier foliage for energy storage for winter so pruning too much before dormancy isnt the best idea
Idk to be honest. As I mentioned earlier in the thread, for all intents and purposes, the tree has been dormant since I repotted it until now. That new growth is the first I've seen... But no, I don't really see dormancy in any of my trees. I don't think I'm gonna mess with it until spring just to be safe, maybe just pull off what is already dead and gone
 

Esolin

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I don't need that branch in particular, the problem is that this particular Juniper has pretty much been languishing in place for the past year since I repotted it... No new growth as far as I can tell. Now all of a sudden I'm getting massive browning, what everyone is telling me is normal, and it does seem that way, but the only new growth I've noticed in a year is the one pictured, and that's brand new. So basically, all the foliage is expired from what I gather. If I prune back all that's doing this, there will be very little left.

As far as Iguanas or any other animal, I suppose anything is possible, but they would have to go through an absolute minefield of aged Brazilian Rain trees and African Acacias with 2 inch thorns akin to nails to get to my Junipers... It would require them climbing directly over them to get access.
Ah okay, so with this additional info, it sounds like your juniper isn't happy afterall. You're getting more die back than new growth. The shift from organic to 100% inorganic/location/watering changes may have shocked it, and it sounds like it's not getting enough nutrient intake to replace the old foliage. Don't take off any live foliage right now. That'll only make it weaker. You're gonna want to get it healthier first, and then it should back-bud on the bare inner areas of the branches. Once you've got new healthy growth there, you'll be able to trim back the branches, but it sounds like you're a year or two from doing that.

I had a little buffalo Sabina juniper that was starting to look very ratty and brown last year, despite regular watering. All the inner growth was dying and it just had 'end tufts' on the leggy branches. It was still in the 1gal nursery pot I bought it in, so I up-potted it into 2gal terra cotta pot with cactus mix. Didn't disturb the existing rootball much. Let it grow this year. It's muuuuch happier, back-budding well, and thickening it's trunk. Now Florida is much more humid than southern California, so maybe cactus mix isn't ideal in your climate, but in general if I had a weak juniper, I'd slip-pot it into something bigger and give it some fresh, nutrient rich soil to dig it's roots into. Improve the root health, and it'll show in the foliage growth.
 

Mike Corazzi

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Came from Dragon Tree Bonsai, less than an hour north of me, same Zone. Other Shimpaku I have from him are doing just fine. This one became a problem after I repotted, holding pattern x 1 year and now all the browning. Only difference is he raises them in garden soil, I switched it to 100% volcanic rock.

I add SOME organic to junipers. In fact I won't plant or repot any of my trees without at least ...dusting.... some on to the roots just to give the roots a VERY CLOSE access to moisture.
 

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