I’m only now getting to some of the work I’d lined up for last fall. For some varieties like junipers, this poses no particular challenge. For pines, basic seasonal tasks like cutback and needle pulling get tricky once springs candles elongate as candles can break easily. I don’t mind working on pines that are only starting to move, but after the candles reach a certain point, I typically delay further work until decandling time. The tree below is a landscape tree reduced to its first branch. I’ve done little beyond cutback and decandling for the past few years, and wire has only been used to set the main branches.
In keeping with the light touch approach, I thinned new growth to two buds per branch and removed all old, and a few new, needles.
Dense summer growth
After thinning to two shoots per branch
After removing needles
Once the extra foliage was out of the way, I applied two wires and and held each in place with a guy wire.
After wiring and pulling the branches down
I was surprised by the difference so little wire can make, and happy that two wires will suffice for now.
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