Satsuki next step

ml_work

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I purchased this satsuki from Brussels at Christmas, their standard large satsuki. As with any new tree I have not done anything to it, just let it grow. It has put on a nice amount of new leaves and had a few blooms this past month. Since I had not done any cutting or shaping to it, most of the blooms were down in the leaves and hard to see. I want to keep it the style and shape it is but what should I do for next year? If I cut it back now will it effect next years blooms?

Thanks,
Michael
 

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buddhamonk

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depends on what the trunk looks like. If you're happy with the way it looks at this time and just want to maintain it's current shape. Then you can just trim it after flowering but before it forms flower buds for next year - usually mid July.

Just trim it branches so you have only two dividing branches at each point. Most will have three so get rid of one.
 

ml_work

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Thanks buddhamonk, the trunk is short, about 1 in around. As of now I am going to keep it same shape. I see new growth but do not know if it is flower buds or just leaves ? From what you are telling me it should not be flowers so I can cut back.

Thanks!
Michael
 

ml_work

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I did the cut back, even all the way around at the first of June. I thought it looked pretty good. Then I noticed leaves falling off a few at the time. No change of color, still nice and green, but they have continued to fall off. As of today it only has a few leaves left on the entire tree. and no sign of new growth. It had been in shade, filtered light, so I have moved to more shade spot. Could the cut back have killed it? No need for a picture, just look at the original and picture it without leaves :(.
Thanks,
Michael
 

M.B.

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I have found that a quick change in a plant is usually a watering issue. Too little or too much. If it was over several weeks it might be a root problem which is still probably a watering issue. I've never heard of healthy leaves dropping off with no warning. Are they turning even a little grayish before dropping? I've had plants do something like that in summer when it got real hot for long periods of time. It didn't matter the amount of shade but the actual air temps (low 100's during the day, 80's at night) that they didn't like. I'm thinking not all satsuki varieties are alike as far as hardiness to heat. I have lost azaleas during the summer sitting right next to 4 or 5 other azaleas with the same light, same watering, everything the same, yet when it got hot, they just slowly crashed.
Mary B.
 

ml_work

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Thanks Mary,
From what I could tell, no change in color of the leaves. Now that they have fallen off they are brown/black. Now the HEAT...that could be it, today was 98f with heat index of 104!. Most all my trees leaves are turning black on the tips or brown, makes no difference what soil they are in, good bonsai, cheap MG, all are going down.
Thanks,
Michael
 

buddhamonk

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Doubt the cut back has anything to do with it. Satsuki can tolerate really hard pruning. I did that to three of my satsuki and the 90 degree weather + full sun aren't stopping them. Typically they like full sun but hate dry soil so I often water 2 to 3 times a day on hot days. Wondering what happened to yours...was it repotted this year?
 

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