Spider mite recovery timeline

Hey everyone,

I have an old Mas Ishii shimpaku that was gaining strength all summer, starting to explode with runners, and I was looking forward to re-styling it this winter. Unfortunately, when I got it up on the stand recently, I discovered (to my horror) that a powerful and well-ramified lower back branch was absolutely covered in spider mites. I’ve treated rigorously over the past few weeks, done multiple tests without seeing mites, and shaken out the dead foliage. I feel better that the issue seems to be under control, but the color of this foliage remains duller/yellower than that on the surrounding tree. Can I expect to see color return and, if so, over what kind of time period? What criteria would you use to decide whether the tree is still strong enough to style this winter?



I was at a bonsai nursery and discovered a spider mite infestation. I reported it to the owner and he said he’d treat it after we left. A month later I came back and it wasn’t noticeable that he’d had a problem. That was late September to late October.

Your climate, severity, and treatment will play a part in how quickly your tree(s) recover.

I agree with Wayne. The time of year also dictates a lot as well. If you’re in winter, you won’t see much recovery until February. If however, you’re in the southern hemisphere approaching summer, it could be within a month.
Can you not style the tree without styling that branch and simply use a guy wire to roughly place it where it needs to go? Or maybe substitute it altogether with a different branch? Just a thought.