Teach me about "Hardening Off"

Smoke

Imperial Masterpiece
Messages
9,993
Likes
14,290
Location
Fresno, CA
USDA Zone
9
#21
Also, you allow the tree to get more "traffic" on the branches, which will give you better backbudding once exposed to light.

Do we now need a whole new thread on the definition of "traffic"....
Not the band....
Not the cars and trucks on the road....
It's the movement of carbohydrates and sugars in the vascular system of the tree.
Here’s the bottom line. I don’t need to understand how it works, nor what it’s called. I let the fruits of my labors speak for themselves. I’ve said a hundred times around here. Pick a person whose trees and work you admire and learn all you can from that person. I’m telling you that waiting for this mystical hardening off is a waste of valuable time when it comes to making branches and building a tree. You can look at my work which I have posted in progressions and in very short amounts of time, like my avatar. Or you can argue with someone that obviously could help you make better bonsai cause it feels good to allow the tail to wag the dog.

The difference is when the conversation is done I go back to beautiful bonsai and you go back to your numerous projects with no future and no plan. The choice is yours. Have a good day.
 

GrimLore

Imperial Masterpiece
Messages
8,502
Likes
7,271
Location
South East PA
USDA Zone
6b
#25
I am most eager to see why I been doing it wrong and how I can improve on what I already have.
Re-reading this all I came to realize you mean other then seedlings - sorry it was not obvious in your original post :)

For what it is worth though most everything I have ever worked with when I had plants wanting to ramify I found that the nip and grow method had a large variable by species, most likely related to my climate and other factors.

Having said that from experience here I would think the only valuable information you could get would be from the pro's in your region by species... For example I just don't see how my advice on Quince would be of any use to you as your growing conditions are very different. I have posted a few that I have taken from bush form, trimmed to five branches, and trimmed in Fall and Spring again to have over two dozen branchlets in two short seasons. Same applies to other plants and trees, they are all different here in how the react. Would it work there? Doubt it...

Anyways, good to chat it up a bit here and the best to you and yours :)

Grimmy
 
Messages
1,089
Likes
396
Location
MD/DC
USDA Zone
7a
#26
My (limited) understanding is "hardening off" is when a given flush has finished pushing, and the advantage to pruning then is that much of the tree's energy will have been depleted so that the next flush will have smaller internodes yet leaves enough time for another flush of growth to develop. It reminds me of the pinch or hedge debate that has come up before, and I'll admit that I struggle with that debate internally, but I'm sure it also depends on the species. Maples/deciduous, maybe it is a good idea, but I am no expert. Anecdotally, I've heard that pruning in the spring before growth "hardens off" can cause excessive weeping of the wounds, and I could imagine osmotic pressure being particularly high when the growth is at a maximum, but I'm guessing no one wants to do big cuts in the spring. Another variable is refinement/development.
I am also asking myself these questions with regards to my Tsuga Canadensis. Pinch, cut after hardening, cut in fall are all suggestions I have received in the quest for encouraging back budding. Pinching might get auxins doing their thing sooner. In the fall gives the "to be cut" foliage more time to generate energy for backbudding. "After hardening" is somewhere in the middle that leaves more time to set buds before the fall flush.
 

Anthony

Imperial Masterpiece
Messages
5,075
Likes
6,462
Location
West Indies [ Caribbean ]
USDA Zone
13
#31
Al.

my offering.
Spring flush and end of month to be pruned.
Also fertilised for 1 month and builds up more
growth energy.
This is done 3 times and induces ramification.
Good Day
Anthony

Celtis l. out of fridge April 1st.
Fertiliser from May 1st once a week.
Stopped when the rains are going.
Growth with rain and fertiliser = soft tasty shoots.

hackb 2018.jpg
 
Messages
1,623
Likes
2,190
Location
Northern Germany
USDA Zone
8a
#32
Guess this whole discussion fits in with the "Do not wire plants in the growing season" argument. The more you wait, the longer it takes. The more you work the tree, the faster it goes. Untill you reach a tipping point where the tree gets too weak to respond to the continued work. So you need to know where the balance lays between pushing the tree and keeping them healthy. The more eperience one has, the better they can judge that balance.

I think most people are pushing their trees too little.
 

just.wing.it

Imperial Masterpiece
Messages
7,189
Likes
8,166
Location
Blips and Chitz (mid MD, 6b...ish)
USDA Zone
6B
#33
Guess this whole discussion fits in with the "Do not wire plants in the growing season" argument. The more you wait, the longer it takes. The more you work the tree, the faster it goes. Untill you reach a tipping point where the tree gets too weak to respond to the continued work. So you need to know where the balance lays between pushing the tree and keeping them healthy. The more eperience one has, the better they can judge that balance.

I think most people are pushing their trees too little.
Well said!

I'd rather push too little than too much.

I think I'm in a stage now, where I feel like I've killed too many by over working...so I'm trying to feather the throttle a bit of the styling part and let them gain vigor...
 
Messages
398
Likes
276
Location
San DIego
USDA Zone
10a
#34
Before the branch is hardened off it is incapable of photosynthesizing at maximum efficiency. The plant is expending resources and hasn’t recovered that lost energy yet. Like others have mentioned, it looses water more easily as well. Pruning these unlignified branches also results in the stem being crushed or smashed by the blades of a shear. When the branch is harderened you get cleaner cuts. Also, i suspect that the branch is more voulnerable to pathogenic invasion at the cut site before it is lignified.
 
Last edited:

JoeR

Masterpiece
Messages
3,040
Likes
1,973
Location
Sandhills of North Carolina
USDA Zone
8a
#35
Here’s the bottom line. I don’t need to understand how it works, nor what it’s called. I let the fruits of my labors speak for themselves. I’ve said a hundred times around here. Pick a person whose trees and work you admire and learn all you can from that person. I’m telling you that waiting for this mystical hardening off is a waste of valuable time when it comes to making branches and building a tree. You can look at my work which I have posted in progressions and in very short amounts of time, like my avatar. Or you can argue with someone that obviously could help you make better bonsai cause it feels good to allow the tail to wag the dog.

The difference is when the conversation is done I go back to beautiful bonsai and you go back to your numerous projects with no future and no plan. The choice is yours. Have a good day.
It is indeed MarkyScott that recommends waiting to hardening off to prune back. He walked me through what to do in a couple posts a while back.

Now, if you will @Smoke , walk me through YOUR thinking and process with this trident. I think this will help clarify the two separate ways of thinking and processes being discussed. I myself have no idea, and I think my lack of understanding (if I don’t soon improve upon) will begin to show with this trident.
 

Attachments

JoeR

Masterpiece
Messages
3,040
Likes
1,973
Location
Sandhills of North Carolina
USDA Zone
8a
#36
The trident has not been cut back or wired all year, and I too was waiting for “hardening” but I don’t see any in sight- and now I believe I may have wasted some progress waiting.
 

JoeR

Masterpiece
Messages
3,040
Likes
1,973
Location
Sandhills of North Carolina
USDA Zone
8a
#37
Here are some of Marks posts on the subject, I believe this is the “opposing” side being discussed here.
 

Attachments

sorce

Nonsense Rascal
Messages
19,303
Likes
24,601
Location
Berwyn, Il
USDA Zone
6.2
#39
This really doesn't even matter.

Cut when the branch is the right size.

What FUCKING STAGE are we talking about.

For Christ sake we are not even discussing the same thing.

Way more details.

Sorce
 

Smoke

Imperial Masterpiece
Messages
9,993
Likes
14,290
Location
Fresno, CA
USDA Zone
9
#40
Guess this whole discussion fits in with the "Do not wire plants in the growing season" argument. The more you wait, the longer it takes. The more you work the tree, the faster it goes. Untill you reach a tipping point where the tree gets too weak to respond to the continued work. So you need to know where the balance lays between pushing the tree and keeping them healthy. The more eperience one has, the better they can judge that balance.

I think most people are pushing their trees too little.
Awesome
 

Similar threads