Scots pine needs developing

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Location
Mooresville, NC - USA
USDA Zone
7B
#1
Ive got a scots pine that has been in a container for several years. I got it from a vendor last fall. Is it the wrong time to plant back into the ground? Should i wait until spring? I think the trunk needs to be larger, and im thinking it would grow much better back in the ground for a few years, or is that the wrong thinking?
 

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Dav4

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#2
If you aren't going to do any rootwork, now is fine- you will need to water deeply several times weekly if it remains hot and dry. You would be better off waiting till late winter if you plan on doing meaningful work on the roots (which is probably the most often overlooked thing to be done to trees planted out in the yard).

Dave
 

rockm

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#3
I don't think the trunk needs much further development. It's got nice, mostly proportional, lines now. What needs to happen is the branches and foliage need to be brought in closer to the trunk to make the tree look less lanky. You can also work to get a lower apex on it, removing the straight extension at the top, using an existing lower branch as the new one..Wire...

Planting it in the ground is a long term commitment. It will be several years before the trunk expands to any noticeable degree. Additionally, you'd have to work to get it back INTO a container once all that development is completed.
 
Messages
367
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2
Location
Mooresville, NC - USA
USDA Zone
7B
#4
That makes sense rock. I knew it would be a task, but thought the time would be worth it. Im not gonna do it if you think i have other things that should happen instead. I see what you mean about the apex. What would be the first step in trying to get buds closer to the trunk? Should i do anything before winter, or just wait until spring for any work? Any help or advice is greatly appreciated.
 
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N. Alabama
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#5
Hey Digger, can I complicate things? This is a Scots pine grown for 5 year in the ground. It started out with the same basic configuration of yours. A low branch to build a tree from. In your case the options are what Mark described on one end and this on the other or something in between. Options are what we do here. Your tree, your decisions, which makes growing all the more fun. Decisions, decisions :D With this option you are looking at a few years growing and then starting all over with fine tuning. What ever you do have fun with it and learn something.
Wood
 

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Messages
367
Likes
2
Location
Mooresville, NC - USA
USDA Zone
7B
#6
Yep, now my brain is spinning. Did all the branches you have there sprout after you planted it? What makes a new bud form to become a branch? Especially on pines it seems like it would be impossible to get new growth from older wood. Do needles have to be present in order for a branch to form, or if you prune off all but the closest growth to the trunk, does it force new buds to form?
 
Messages
367
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2
Location
Mooresville, NC - USA
USDA Zone
7B
#7
For the learning experience on this one, i think id like to start working on refining the branches. I dont have any really finished bonsai. Most of my trees are in the ground getting larger, so i need to learn more about the refinement stage, plus give me some of that instant gratification to keep me hooked, lol.

Ok, after studying my tree for a couple of hours or so, do you grow out what buds/branches you have closest to the trunk, and then take off the outer ones? Or, would you take off the outer ones to send the energy to the smaller ones? Is that the procedure to make it not look so spindly? Thanks for the help
 
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N. Alabama
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#8
Digger, I think you are going in the right direction, from what you said. if it were me, I would work the tree this fall. Wire the tree and shape it like you want. If you don't have anyone to work with then post a few shots from different angles. Don't cut anything unless you are sure you don't need it.
Wood
 
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Location
N. Alabama
USDA Zone
7
#10
Digger, the first step is reducing the length of the branches this fall. If you don't have experience doing this, it is better to wire everything first and lay out the branch placement. Then you will have a good idea how far back to cut. The first choice would be removing the ends back to a side branch and using it for the new extension. Then you would remove all but two branches at any point (whorls) You will be removing a considerable amount of foliage and this will stimulate back-budding if the tree is strong. This is basic stuff just to keep the tree proportional. From the questions, I think you should start with very basic things and see what happens. Next year you will do some candle work and that stimulates more back-budding. Pines are slow so be patient and keep it vigorous.
Wood
 
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259
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Location
CT
USDA Zone
6
#11
Hey Digger, can I complicate things? This is a Scots pine grown for 5 year in the ground. It started out with the same basic configuration of yours. A low branch to build a tree from. In your case the options are what Mark described on one end and this on the other or something in between. Options are what we do here. Your tree, your decisions, which makes growing all the more fun. Decisions, decisions :D With this option you are looking at a few years growing and then starting all over with fine tuning. What ever you do have fun with it and learn something.
Wood
Hey, that kinda looks like one I bought this year ;)
 

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Messages
873
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Location
N. Alabama
USDA Zone
7
#12
Fang, it's a sibling :) The other was grown to be a short fat one
Wood
 
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