Thursday, 24 June 2010

Junipers are really taking off

My junipers seem to really like this warm and sunny weather we are having at the moment.  I am pinching back new shoots and growing tips on a daily basis now on my specimen trees in order to maintain them in shape and keep the growth tight.
All of these junipers are now growing in a completely inorganic growing medium ( I am using Sophisticat Pink Cat litter which is based on baked Moalr Clay) and following advise from Walter Pall's blog, I am feeding weekly and provide lots of water.  The results are encouraging so far with good foliage colour and vigorous growth.

Wednesday, 23 June 2010

After looking at this Juniper for the last 18 months, I have finally made a start with the initial styling of the tree.
This will set the framework for further development and defines the style for further development.

Tuesday, 22 June 2010

Updated Photos

I have taken some new pictures of some of my trees and posted these on my picasa web album

Sunday, 20 June 2010


As trees are getting their trim this month, it is a good time to take cuttings.
I have taken cuttings of Trident Maple, Japanese Mountain Maple, Azalea, Chinese Elm, Cotoneaster and English Elm.
I sever the material below a leaf node and plant in a 50/50 mix of Vermiculite and Potting compost (I sieve this mixture to remove the fine dust). They then get dibbed in to a pot (usually 5 at a time and get covered with a clear plastic waterbottle,which is cut in half).
I keep them in the greenhouse under the bench, where it is warm, but out of direct sunlight.

Fingers crossed.

Crazy Weather

I am not quite sure what to make of the weather this year. June has seen days of 24C followed by a drop of temperature of 10 - 12C, with the next day struggling to get to 12C. I have been keeping a check on the weather for a few years now, but this is a first for me.

Thursday, 17 June 2010

Scale insects are a real pest

I have just spent 2 hours checking all my trees after discovering that my large Chinese Elm was riddled with scale insects. I generally check my trees every month and there was no sign at the last inspection in May.

No sign of aphids, so the systemic must have done its job, but scale on most of my Chinese Elms, two of my maples and three of the cotoneasters.

I have removed any that i could see with a brush dipped in white spirit and applied another spraying of systemic insecticide.
I finally got round to refining this literati style juniper which was first styled in 2005 for a styling competition on an internet forum.

Wednesday, 9 June 2010

Defoliation of my Maples is imminent

While most of my trees were late in leafing out this year, most have now caught up and are putting on good growth.  Only the Cotoneasters and Hornbeams are still lagging behind.

The foliage on my Maples has now hardened and the trees are ready for defoliation, in order to reduce leaf size and improve ramification.  I will wait until we have a spell of reasonably dry weather forecast (this weekend is looking good) before carrying out this work.  I will record the process and post a video here to document the procedure.