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Hi,this is a kotobuki i recieved not to long ago,it was in a very small shallow pot which was retaining to much water,i transferred the tree to this much larger pot a couple months ago that i had laying around for now(without messing with the roots to much),hopefully the roots will grow like crazy this summer,other then that i removed two branches,one was very small(T branches)i think this helped the look of the tree.As far as i know the tree is about ten years old,the bark is just begining to crack,its 13"tall,but eventually i think i can get it down to 12" if it backbuds well,one thing i noticed the candles are slower growing then my species pines,was wondering if its because of the tree being a dwarf?or because of the root situation earlier this year?I think i might not candle prune this year,just cut back in the fall,what do you guys think?I know its no show pine,but hopefully one day it will be much nicer.I'd atleast would like to get the tree into a presentable state.In the photo the branch on the right that was removed,there was a knuckle,not bad but i had to remove it,hopefully this will stop any further inverse taper,other then that,at the apex of the tree,the largest branch on the right is starting to cause inverse taper,i think in another season i might be able to fix this the best i can,there is alot of smaller branches around that area to work with,also i wanted to make this area more dense to cover this mistake.Is there anything else i can do to help this tree?Besides just letting it grow!LOL The darker base is because of watering before photo,the graft looks ok to me.Any suggestions would be appreciatted,alot of members on this board and the other have helped me in the past with trees,and i really appreciate it,im no expert.


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it was in a very small shallow pot which was retaining to much water,i transferred the tree to this much larger pot a couple months ago that i had laying around for now.

Hi Mike, I've never dealt with this species however, it is a lovely tree. Very compact yet has a very ancient feel to it. In reference to above, why did you transfer it to a larger pot if the smaller one was retaining to much water? I guess it would be ok, but perhaps a smaller one would compliment the tree more and you wouldn't have to worry about overwatering as much. Anyway congrats on a nice tree, thanks for sharing!
It will eventually go back into a smaller pot,but not that small,way to shallow for a pine.
I changed the soil mixture to something that drains more,better suited,the old soil had very sticky gray clay mixed in,and the whole mess was not ever drying out,it was getting brown needles here and there,since the change this has stopped.
I have three and I love them, they're not for everybody, but they keep the needles short. Treat them just like you would any JBP. Nice one by the way.

I just went out and took another look at mine. The candles are about a third as long as my black pines. Also, all the needles have emerged from the candles on the koto buki more than on the black pine. I love this species, nice small needles, great for shohin and mame. I recently found out last weekend that these can not be grown from seed, I thought that was interesting. Most of them start their lives grafted to a japanese black pine. Yours looks good, I have seen some larger ones that can fetch a good price, so they seem to be a great investment tree as well. Nice tree.
Thanks,if you get a chance id love to see some photos of yours,especially the candles,glad to see some others like this cultivator as well.They swell very well around the graft,so if done low and properly,it makes the tree look awesome,and the graft is almost unnoticeable,This graft was done extremely well compared to some ive seen on pines,it would not surprise me if the tree originated from Brent.
Nice tree. I'm jealous:eek:
I've always wanted one of these.
I love my kotobuki. Very different from my other black pines. Almost like a white pine with black pine needle thickness. Seems to bud back easier, as well (though that may just be a function of more light reaching interior spaces).
I've been told they back bud well,id like to do a progression thread in a few seasons,and let everyone know how she back buds.
I've been told they back bud well by members with lots of pine experience,i might do a progression thread in a couple of seasons and post my findings.
Since Kotobuki is grafted on black pine, does this mean that it would fare well in the hot south?
Its grafted onto Japanese black pine species,i dont think they do well in the south because they need a cold winter dormacy period,without that,they would not live long,there might be people successfully doing so down south,maybe some members might have more info about this.Ive heard of people attempting white pine down south,but from what i was told from eyewitness accounts is that they were alive but looked terrible,they were not thriving.
My experience with them in the south

I have my three pictured, one large one, a chuhin and a shohin, they do just fine here in Oklahoma with our heat, when it gets really hot, I keep them in my shade house, they are maintained just like other JBP. All three of mine are grown from cuttings, not grafted. I added a picture from ebay where I bought my shohin. It didn't sell so I contacted the owner and made an offer and he accepted. Cali-Mike doesn't think much of me because I don't grow and style my own trees, and I'm an arrogant pri*k, but I have developed a pretty good eye for decent material, and I saw a little tree in this one.



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Here are pics of mine. I really should not say its mine because this tree belongs to my father, known as JRob on this forum. We are a father son team, we take care of the entire collection together. This is one of his trees. The pics did not turn out the best but you should get the idea. They appear to backbud very well which is good for developing good ramification.
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