Pruning back a tree in the fall?

simko

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Hi everyone, first post here!

im from SW ontario, Canada, hardiness zone is 5b if im not mistaken.

I bought a burning bush shrub from home depot which was on sale. I picked it because of the interesting trunk and root structure which was above the soil.... i will post pictures later.

I was wondeing if it is bad for me to start pruning this thing now with winter around the corner.... i was also hoping to get a root over rock effect, and thicken up the trunk... if possible i would try to keep it indoors for the winter.


Aaron
 

JudyB

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Aaron, it's the wrong time of year to do any pruning. Reason being, it might spur some new growth, and that growth will not be strong enough to live through the winter season. You can prune after dormancy, most things do well if you prune when you repot in the spring before bud burst. But this varies from tree to tree. I don't know about this particular shrub and what it likes. I do know that it is hardy in your zone, so keep it outside. Very few trees/shrubs do well inside, and this is not one of them. Only some tropicals and sub trops can live indoors, like ficus for one. You should dig a hole and bury the pot, or better yet plant it in the ground. You can work best on thickening that trunk up when it can grow unimpeded by a pot. ROR is pretty specialized work, you might want to learn how to keep bonsai alive before tackling that one. And there are specific trees that do better as ROR like trident maples. It has to do with the way the roots grow. Plant that sucker, and then spend winter researching and learning. Good luck!:) oh, and welcome.
 

Bill S

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Judy gave great advice for you simko, we keep saying there are really no rules in Bonsai, but there are in horticulture.
 

edprocoat

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ROR may take quite a long time, Burning Bush grows really slowly. I found they are as slow as, or maybe even slower than a pine for root growth. They never seem to get really good roots. I got two about six years back and planted one in a good soil around mid july, and the other I trimmed some branches for styling, 3 galllon container and about 22 inches tall and really bushy, but mostly fine roots. I put it in a 14 inch tall narrow pot to try and get a ROR plant from it, after a year the plant had grew about 3 inches and bushed out again but the roots hardly grew. The one I planted in the ground lived through the Ohio winter and started to get buds and we had a heavy frost and the buds died and so did the bush. The one in the pot was eaten the third year, I thought it might have been a deer but my neighbor said he seen a rabbit start to eat it, which I thought was odd as it was on a small table about 2 foot tall. They are beautiful especially in the fall. Good luck with your plant.

ed
 
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