I’ve had this pine for about a year, and a month ago some of the needles began to turn yellow, then brown, and drop off. These are not older needles, and I’m wondering if this is a problem caused by overwatering, or not enough sun, or possibly a fungus? The tree does not seem as healthy as it did at the beginning of the summer. We’ve had a lot of rain, and I’ve been traveling a lot and have had others watering my trees, so, hoping the problem is temporary and the tree will recover, but any suggestions would be much appreciated.
Your tree may well be stressed. I find that @ryan’s mental image of a pendulum with regards to maintaining the balance of water and oxygen can also be applied to heat, light and pH. Your aim is to reduce big swings and keep it as close to equilibrium as you can. Growing any plant in a pot will stress it, not to mention the additional stress that many of our bonsai-ing techniques will have. Be kind to your tree and hopefully it will build up its strength.
On what part of the planet are you growing? It could be due to a poor growing season.
@AndyK is right about your tree being stressed. If its now colder and there is a lot of rain I would either protect it from rain or tilt the pot up on edge to help with drainage. Also keep it in full sun, pines love sun. I water my pines 1-2 times a week from Nov-Jan and sometimes Feb. I only start to increase their watering when they start to elongate in the early spring. Also, as Andy mentioned I would check the soil pH and other modifiable factors.
Thanks for the replies - yes I agree the pine is stressed. We had more rain than usual in New England this summer, and I’ve been traveling a lot and I know my trees were overwatered while I was away. This is the first summer I’ve had this tree, and my other JBP, which I’ve had for about 8 years, did not produce much growth this year but is not showing signs of stress, however it’s in a shallower pot which dries out more quickly. I’m also suspecting the pH of my water and soil might be a factor. I’ll take the wire off it and let it regain health, and hope it will bounce back with strong growth next spring.
It is said to be foolish to talk to plants, but the true foolishness is not to listen to them.
Randy Knight has a lot of experience with stressed trees, and his asymmetry pod cast is well worth a listen. 1st thing to do is get the tree off the bench and onto the ground.
It’s becoming too cold here to keep a JBP on the ground much longer, so it’s in my (cold) greenhouse now for the winter. It might be stressed because it is new to my location, and/or I wired it last fall, that coupled with the wet summer we’ve had here. I’ll take the wire off and give it a season or more to recover without any further interventions.
Thanks for the suggestions-