As I walked through the garden yesterday, I didn’t see many signs of fall.
Here, for example, is a chojubai I repotted in August producing new shoots above and new roots below.
New growth on dwarf Japanese flowering quince
A beautyberry in the garden has put on several inches of growth in the last month and more buds are on the way.
New shoot on beautyberry
With few exceptions, most of the trees in my garden are actively growing. The main signs that we’re closing in on the end of the growing season can be found on deciduous trees that weren’t completely defoliated in spring.
As you can see on the Korean hornbeam below, the leaves that emerged in February are yellowing while the leaves that developed after partial defoliation in June are still green.
Yellow and green leaves on Korean hornbeam
Likewise, new needles on decandled black pines are still elongating.
Decandled Japanese black pine
The coast live oaks in the garden are also enjoying the late heat. The 52″ long shoot on the tree below has been growing one inch per day in recent weeks.
New shoot on coast live oak
Even relatively slow-growing species like sekka hinoki have grown up to two-to-three inches in the last month, and many of the azaleas in the garden are putting on a flush of fall growth.
New leaves on an exposed root satsuki azalea ‘Saiko’
My plan is to hold off on pruning until I see signs from the trees that they’re preparing for winter. On deciduous trees, I’ll wait until most of the leaves show fall color. On satsuki azaleas, coast live oaks, and pines, I’ll wait until the new growth hardens off. And for species that don’t reliably go dormant where I live, I’ll prune near the end of December and remove any remaining leaves.
In the meantime, I’ll be working on junipers and on pines that haven’t been decandled.
New client trees available
A collection of broadleaf evergreen and deciduous bonsai (plus a few conifers) has recently become available. You can browse the collection at the Client Sales Trees page. (Local pick-up only.)
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