Looking for suggestions on what (if anything) to do with my recently (March 16) repotted juniper. My concern is that I may have planted into a slightly too small (width) pot, perhaps too soon. When I water I make sure the water flows out the bottom of the container. It’s possible I packed the container too tight and the roots are not getting enough oxygen as they were used to, as this is its first bonsai container, it was in a plastic container. The foliage has gone from a vibrant dark green to looking dried out. I’m in southwest Virginia, Montgomery County.
- Leave in the container, and perhaps water less or more often (I’ve been waiting for the top dressing to dry)
- Pull it out of the container and back to a plastic container with same soil mix or with something else (wood chips or sphagnum moss)
- Remove all wire (this was put on over winter)
- Something else?
Any suggestions you have would be greatly appreciated, I’ve been very fond of this tree.
Here is a picture the day I repotted, to show the change it has taken in the last month:
It looks to be a scale foliage, but I am seeing a lot of juvenile foliage, which is in stress response to to either too much foliage loss from pinching , overly hard pruning, or sometimes too much fertilizer.
How much root mass was removed?
Since there isn’t as much roots it won’t need as much water until there is vigorous new growth.
Junipers do not like soggy feet, your substrate needs to almost fully dry.
Thanks for your reply. I’m pretty sure this is a procumbens nana. It has never been pinched, it has been pruned in the winter but not aggressively. It was wired in the winter. I haven’t fertilized since last summer. You can see from the picture I took the day I repotted that the foliage appears healthy.
Thanks for your watering tip, I will be sure to really let the soil dry completely before a watering. I have been waiting for the top dressing to dry. Perhaps I will inspect a little into the soil to check how dry I’m really letting it get.
I’m still a little concerned that either I pruned roots too aggressively during the repot or that it’s not liking its new environment. In order to fit this pot I had to cut a bit of root mass, it was in a 11 inch width plastic container, I pruned to fit this 8 inch width container, with some room for new soil. I would say I roughly removed a little less than half the original root mass. Fearing this was too aggressive. Wondering if I need to pull it out of the pot to “help” the tree recover… or be patient and let the tree see through its recovery in this container.
Would taking off the wire assist it’s recovery? Or don’t touch that either right now?
not sure if disturbing the roots again would help. If there is some soil in the pot around the root ball and you do not have air pockets/voids in the root ball it should be ok imo.
Thanks, @antelion. So wait this one out, proper watering, and hope for the best.
I would not do anything.
Any further stress would not be good.
Always check soil moisture content in a juniper by digging you finger in an inch or two. The top dressing could be completely dry, while the deeper soil is soaking wet.
Taking off the wiring would de-stress the tree. You don’t want to leave the wiring on too long - it needs to be taken off before it damages the branch/trunk. Good luck!