Red Pine new growth hanging down. Advice needed.

Clicio

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Hi all.
All the new needles on my Akamatsu are getting too long, soft, and hanging down.
All my JBP on the same bench have hard new needles. It's spring here.
What could be happening?
Lack of enough sun?
Fertilizer too high in N?

Pictures attached

20211015_081603.jpg

20211015_081629.jpg

20211014_123834.jpg
 

penumbra

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It just looks like healthy succulent new growth. Unless those hanging shoots are part of your planned design, cut them off.
 

Clicio

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It just looks like healthy succulent new growth. Unless those hanging shoots are part of your planned design, cut them off.
Thanks, Penumbra
But I have been working on this tree for at least 4 years, and this is the first time new growth elongates so much in the Spring.
Elongation is not a problem as I will decandle in the summer, but this growth being down, limp, just seems weird.
 

namnhi

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Have you been feeding it a bit too much? Looks like the new growths and needles extending too fast (too heavy) to stay up. Maybe too much water/fertilizer would be my suspect.
 

Clicio

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Have you been feeding it a bit too much? Looks like the new growths and needles extending too fast (too heavy) to stay up. Maybe too much water/fertilizer would be my suspect.
Yes, it could be.
I suspect water issues (overwatering - rain), as we are having an unusual wet Spring, after an unusual wet Winter around here.
As for the feeding, I always feed them pines heavily in the fall, so the spring growth is maximized.
Thanks for your help.
 

bwaynef

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Is this year's growth different somehow? Are its growing conditions different this year? I can attest that JRP will grow long needles when not given enough sunlight, but I'm thinking that might not be the case here, particularly if your JBP seem happy.
 

Clicio

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Is this year's growth different somehow? Are its growing conditions different this year? I can attest that JRP will grow long needles when not given enough sunlight, but I'm thinking that might not be the case here, particularly if your JBP seem happy.
With the wet winter and spring, came the clouds and no direct sunshine.
So yes, it had less sun than in other years.
JBP are doing well, spiky hard small needles growing up.
Perhaps JRP are more sensitive to this wet conditions?
Thanks for confirming the sunlight issue.
 

bwaynef

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Tilt the pot for a while. Add a hole to the low side if possible.
 

MichaelS

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Red pine needs (if you want to stunt it's growth a bit - which you should) very little water and very little food. Wait until the shoots are hardened off them cut them all off and thin the new buds to 2. Feeding them 2 times a year with solid organic or perhaps 6 times/year with liquid is probably enough. Repot rarely too. Every 4 years. Remove all old needles at the end of the season and cut any long needles for a few years. Place it in an exposed position.
 

Potawatomi13

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Red pine needs (if you want to stunt it's growth a bit - which you should) very little water and very little food. Wait until the shoots are hardened off them cut them all off and thin the new buds to 2. Feeding them 2 times a year with solid organic or perhaps 6 times/year with liquid is probably enough. Repot rarely too. Every 4 years. Remove all old needles at the end of the season and cut any long needles for a few years. Place it in an exposed position.
For tree in development?! MAYBE techniques for refinement. Cutting needles? Surely you jest! Have you EVER seen Mirai Live? Starving developing tree is ignorant!🧐
 

Clicio

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Red pine needs (if you want to stunt it's growth a bit - which you should) very little water and very little food. Wait until the shoots are hardened off them cut them all off and thin the new buds to 2. Feeding them 2 times a year with solid organic or perhaps 6 times/year with liquid is probably enough. Repot rarely too. Every 4 years. Remove all old needles at the end of the season and cut any long needles for a few years. Place it in an exposed position.
Thanks for answering, I appreciate it.
But the fact is I have been growing and taking care of pines for some years.
I follow the cycle of the seasons. Choose buds, decandle when needed, thin old needles, etc..
The point here is, it changed behavior unexpectedly.
 

Clicio

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Tilt the pot for a while. Add a hole to the low side if possible.
It has good drainage. It's a relatively narrow tall pot with a big hole on it, but yes, tilting the pot is a possibility.
Thanks!
 

0soyoung

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The point here is, it changed behavior unexpectedly.
Then you should be asking yourself what changed in your/its location recently. Since pines are infamously slow responding, the event could have been several weeks ago.

Have your trees been in exactly the same places through the winter and up to now? In other words, is it correct to assume that your red pines have had the exact same treatments as your black pines?

In my experience, too much water when new shoots/needles are extending will cause the needles to turn yellow (permanently). My climate is quite cool, rarely getting much above 20C. Possibly this yellowing doesn't happen in warmer climes. On the other hand, I can't say whether this droopiness ever occurred on any of my trees - I can only say that it never caught my attention. Maybe this is a phenomenon that only occurs in warmer climes.

Mostly this yellowing occurs with my lodgepole pines but it does also happen with my young red/black Japanese pines that are in shallow pots (not in deeper pots). I use Turface MVP for everything. This year I put roughly half of them in much larger particle sized pumice and those in pumice didn't exhibit the yellowing. Are your red pines in the same substrate as your black pines and are the pots/substrate equally deep on all? Do you water all of them simultaneously?

I've also noted that overpotting makes matters worse in this regard. Did you repot the red pines this spring? Did you "up-pot" them?

Loss of turgidity (which what might be behind your tree's new growth hanging down) is usually a characteristic of something going on with the roots that limits water uptake = roots drowning, roots drying excessively, roots dying (fungal pathogens or bugs such as root aphids). Have you popped the root plug out of the pot to take a look?

Elongation is driven primarily by auxin, as is gravitropism. Your tree has elongated new growth but doesn't seem know which way is up or at least to act on the information as it would normally, by pointing the bud tip up. Gibberellin contributes to elongation; in fact it was discovered from a mold/fungus that causes rice plants to bolt. So maybe there is a similar mold/fungus stimulating overproduction of gibberellins in your tree causing it to produce long new shoots even though you've so strongly withheld nitrogen that it has an auxin deficiency (auxin is a nitrogenous compound). Has there been any 'recent' spraying of fruiting bushes/trees, say, near you? Is there myco in the substrate of your drooping red pines that doesn't seem to be in that of your blacks?


.... 🤔
 
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Clicio

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Then you should be asking yourself what changed in your/its location recently. Since pines are infamously slow responding, the event could have been several weeks ago.

Have your trees been in exactly the same places through the winter and up to now? In other words, is it correct to assume that your red pines have had the exact same treatments as your black pines?

In my experience, too much water when new shoots/needles are extending will cause the needles to turn yellow (permanently). My climate is quite cool, rarely getting much above 20C. Possibly this yellowing doesn't happen in warmer climes. On the other hand, I can't say whether this droopiness ever occurred on any of my trees - I can only say that it never caught my attention. Maybe this is a phenomenon that only occurs in warmer climes.

Mostly this yellowing occurs with my lodgepole pines but it does also happen with my young red/black Japanese pines that are in shallow pots (not in deeper pots). I use Turface MVP for everything. This year I put roughly half of them in much larger particle sized pumice and those in pumice didn't exhibit the yellowing. Are your red pines in the same substrate as your black pines and are the pots/substrate equally deep on all? Do you water all of them simultaneously?

I've also noted that overpotting makes matters worse in this regard. Did you repot the red pines this spring? Did you "up-pot" them?

Loss of turgidity (which what might be behind your tree's new growth hanging down) is usually a characteristic of something going on with the roots that limits water uptake = roots drowning, roots drying excessively, roots dying (fungal pathogens or bugs such as root aphids). Have you popped the root plug out of the pot to take a look?

Elongation is driven primarily by auxin, as is gravitropism. Your tree has elongated new growth but doesn't seem know which way is up or at least to act on the information as it would normally, by pointing the bud tip up. Gibberellin contributes to elongation; in fact it was discovered from a mold/fungus that causes rice plants to bolt. So maybe there is a similar mold/fungus stimulating overproduction of gibberellins in your tree causing it to produce long new shoots even though you've so strongly withheld nitrogen that it has an auxin deficiency (auxin is a nitrogenous compound). Has there been any 'recent' spraying of fruiting bushes/trees, say, near you? Is there myco in the substrate of your drooping red pines that doesn't seem to be in that of your blacks?


.... 🤔
Thanks for pointing out so many possibilities, I am amazed!
Some of them never crossed my mind .
Let's try to eliminate the ones I am sure didn't occur.

Have your trees been in exactly the same places through the winter and up to now?
No.
After buds started to swell I moved the red pine to a sunnier location in the garden.

Are your red pines in the same substrate as your black pines and are the pots/substrate equally deep on all?
Yes, and almost. Red pine has a taller pot as it is a semi-cascade tree.

Do you water all of them simultaneously?
Yes, I do.

Did you repot the red pines this spring? Did you "up-pot" them?
No, same pot as the last two years.

Have you popped the root plug out of the pot to take a look?

Yes. No rotten roots, no funny smell, no bugs or ants, some mychorrizea around the rootball.

Has there been any 'recent' spraying of fruiting bushes/trees, say, near you?
Definitely no. My garden is protected and far from the other plants.

Is there myco in the substrate of your drooping red pines that doesn't seem to be in that of your blacks?
Humm... I am quite sure I would not be able to see the difference. So the answer has to be 'maybe' here. There is mychorrizea, but...

@0soyoung thanks a lot for your suggestions, there is surely much information, plenty of food for thought here.
 

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The changing moisture conditions will affect JBP and JRP somewhat differently. JRP typically have more slender and softer needles to begin with. MY JRP respond more rapidly to over watering or too retentive soil mixes. I would monitor the watering for the JRP or provide more protection if the season is too wet.
The pictures do not show a serious problem in my view, simply a situation to respond to and monitor. Let the soil dry out a bit more between watering and tip pots or containers to ensure moisture is not sitting in the bottom. Long term use a bit more free draining less retentive mix if the problem continues over time.
I also believe the JBP to be more vigorous and thus uses more moisture in the growth pattern than JRP. Translation, I water the JRP less than the JBP in the same situation.
 

Clicio

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The changing moisture conditions will affect JBP and JRP somewhat differently. JRP typically have more slender and softer needles to begin with. MY JRP respond more rapidly to over watering or too retentive soil mixes. I would monitor the watering for the JRP or provide more protection if the season is too wet.
The pictures do not show a serious problem in my view, simply a situation to respond to and monitor. Let the soil dry out a bit more between watering and tip pots or containers to ensure moisture is not sitting in the bottom. Long term use a bit more free draining less retentive mix if the problem continues over time.
I also believe the JBP to be more vigorous and thus uses more moisture in the growth pattern than JRP. Translation, I water the JRP less than the JBP in the same situation.
Thanks Frank, that's my line of thought also.
As many experts already pointed out, unexpected wet conditions surely are one of the culprits, perhaps the sole reason for that behavior.
So following your good advice, pot tilted and less water (when and if it stops raining here).
 

MichaelS

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For tree in development?! MAYBE techniques for refinement. Cutting needles? Surely you jest! Have you EVER seen Mirai Live? Starving developing tree is ignorant!🧐
If it's in a bonsai pot it's time for refinement and restraining regardless of size. (Mine where in normal pots for 20 years before putting into a display pot) Otherwise it should be in a large terracotta pot and fed as you say but red pine should not be forced too much at any stage and it should be kept rather dry or you will probably end up having to graft on buds sometime down the road.
I no longer need to watch things like Mirai Live as I have been growing trees for longer than them, besides which, Ryan's word salads bore me sideways ;)
 

Potawatomi13

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If it's in a bonsai pot it's time for refinement and restraining regardless of size. (Mine where in normal pots for 20 years before putting into a display pot) Otherwise it should be in a large terracotta pot and fed as you say but red pine should not be forced too much at any stage and it should be kept rather dry or you will probably end up having to graft on buds sometime down the road.
I no longer need to watch things like Mirai Live as I have been growing trees for longer than them, besides which, Ryan's word salads bore me sideways ;)
In other words you consider self too good to learn from experts because of knowing it all already. Having been keeping trees 52 years only recently have found true experts largely know better. Humility second only to basic horticulture skill in present hobby.
 

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