Thank you Randy Knight for saving this White Spruce

Long back story here but when I got this Costal Canadian White Spruce last year from someone who collected it from a friend’s property I was certain it was a goner. It has struggled along for a about a year taking one step forward and two steps back, and then after watching Randy’s stream I went out that night and bought some animal bedding wood chips and some weed cloth and followed his instructions. Three months later the tree has stabilized and I’ve just reported it in a heavy pumice mix.

Most of the tree was dead long before it was collected (lived a hard costal life) but you can see that it lost several smaller branches and all of its older needles, and just kept the newer growth on the tips of a few branches. After three months in the wood chips, it finally stopped dropping needles, the color of the remaining needles improved, and it even pushed a little bit of new growth. I realize it’s not out of the woods yet (sorry, couldn’t help the pun) so I won’t work on it next year and just let it grow, and maybe not even the year after that. But I’m so glad this tree survived, I think it’s going to be an epic bonsai.


What made you want to repot it after only 3 months instead of letting it go through a longer time in the bed? I currently had a tipped over California Juniper that I did this to as well. My plan was to repot it in the early spring and let it grow out during the fall/winter.


Our falls and winters here (outside Seattle) can be so wet that I needed the ability to move the tree to dryer areas. It had already grown some new roots and by getting it in the box now with some good soil my thinking was to give it time to establish itself before winter hits.