More summer pine re-potting

Time is flying by and I have not had time to post the last re-pot I did two weeks ago. I learned from Mr. Slovak that the best period to majorly disturb the roots of pines is right after the summer dormancy or right when the trees switch from pushing growth to the tips of next year’s candles to vascular repair. I mentioned the other details in this post-

I found time to do this two weeks back and thankfully, the weather was quite moderate that whole week and I am sure the trees enjoyed this to quickly repair any damage I caused during the root work.


I have been using, pumice, lava, terramol and pieces of cut up bark to introduce an organic element into the mix I use. I have been sifting everything before adding it to the pots this year; buy most of this stuff here at Bon Equip:

First tree up for work is the Scots pine I bought from Mr. Slovak last year. The bark on this guy is not bad given that it could be around 20 years old.




I removed about 20 percent of the roots that were wrapping around the container and I removed about 70-80 of the old soil. It was extremely root-bound and I took about an hour to get everything loosened up. I have also begun adding sphagnum moss on the surface of all the trees I re-pot, this should help with keeping the substrate moist, provide a great area for new feeder roots to grow and create a more pH neutral balance overall.

Next was the Japanese white pine I bought for a steal last year. I believe that because of the cold spring we had and that I wasn’t around that month to provide better protection, The tree lost a good deal of the branches I wanted to keep in the design. This poor guy will have to have a complete restyling perhaps in two years once it’s growing strongly again. The room for roots to grow now should help in eventually bringing this tree back into a good image again.


Here you can see all the branches that decided to give up and also, I removed some of the ugly crossing roots. I believe that this tree did not see a re-pot in maybe 6 years.


I think I could use the branch to create a Jin in the future but I have time to think about the next design anyway. Now the tree looks like more like a mushroom than a bonsai but at least it can now grow its roots out into fresh modern substrate

The rootball here was similar to the Scots pine, it was absolutely packed and so this operation was very essential this year.


I also created a new area for the trees because of some of the high winds we have had this year. This should keep any of the more unstable candidates from toppling over.

Thanks for reading.




Sabina Juniper update

Howdy, I forgot to take before pictures but I gave my sabina that I bought as a 5 dollar bushy thing about 5 years ago a hair cut. I let it grow freely from the styling I gave it almost a year ago and I’d say about 40% came off.


More or less a sequence of the last 4 years. I don’t really have much experience with Junipers and for the life of me, couldn’t come up with a design concept but I learned a bit after working with this material.


A bigger photo of where I decided to leave it when I finished styling it last September and below is what it looks like now. I feel that I am beginning to get a better understanding of where, how and what to style/wire on a juniper after this haircut.


Still a long way to go, Sabina’s don’t make nice little pom poms like Shimpaku do so ramification will take some more time. I can’t decide if the year difference is actually an improvement or not, but I do know that this tree needs a re-pot in the spring.

Since I was feeling creative that day, I also made a C table for our small couch/TV area out of reclaimed Larch :).


Have a good one!