Weekend Rewind For Mario

I said back in part one that I would give Mario an update on his trees from the weekend, so here goes.

The main tree discussed and worked on was his Juniper. A big issue was the amount of juvenile foliage but I’m assured that’s not my fault. You’ll just have to wait for the video covering this from the Saturday workshop 🙂


This is his Shohin Japanese White Pine before the workshop

Not a lot of major work needed but Peter did some removal of branches here and there and worked though the bud selection for next year.

This might be a slightly better front.

Gives you an idea of what was coming off.

Just for reference this was it back in July 2011.

The satsuki also got a tidy up with a slight trim. Not much required after the major pruning back in June. Before and after below.

Also had a look at the black pine but I have no photos.

Mario’s Satsuki

One of the trees I’m minding for Mario while he spends his days kite surfing in Dubai is this little Satsuki Azalea. For me the tree had a few issues to begin with, namely:

the apex being as wide as the bottom branches

 suffers from a floating apex

Missing a branch to the front which I feel is a little too open.

This was the tree back in June 2012

After discussing the tree with Peter Warren in October last year we adjusted a few of the upper branches with wire to try and stop that floating apex. However, it was the wrong time of year to hard prune the apex to try and narrow it. Therefore we could only do so much at that time. This was the tree in April of this year.

After flowering was finished in June I pruned the apex back quite hard in a few places to improve the overall shape. This is the tree now. Less of an appearance of a floating apex and a more overall triangular shape.


This adventurous shoot has appeared on the trunk at a point were I think it might benefit the tree if developed. I’ll let it grow and let Mario remove it if he disagrees 😉


This is one of the top branches that got a major pruning back to old wood. It took a few weeks but it is now starting to fill out nicely but in the right area.


Before and after side by side for comparison

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Mario’s White Pine

Looking nice and healthy Mario 🙂



Mario’s Spring Update

As I had the camera out on Sunday I took the opportunity to snap a few of Mario’s trees that I have in my care while he’s away working in Dubai. It’s sort of like proof of Life! 🙂



Japanese Black Pine

Korean Hornbeam

Itoigawa Juniper

Mario’s Satsuki Azalea

I have Mario’s Azalea for a few years and I like to keep him up to date.

This was it back in June in flower.

The canopy was getting too expansive and the apex was far too large. I opted to seek advice from Peter Warren about what was best for the tree and between us we reduced the foliage mass and I was able to open out the branches a little to start creating definition within the tree. This is it now.

Heavy wire was used to create a gradual bend in the branch. Peter advised that a heavier wire than you would normally use should be utilised in azaleas. This allows for greater support for a brittle tree. You can see that the apex is reduced and the tree is more open. More foliage could have been removed but as it was so late in the season we opted to leave some work until the Spring. Always do what’s best for the tree.

Proof of Life #1

This is specially for Mario who was getting suspicious that I hadn’t posted any photos of his Itogawa Juniper.

Here you go mate. It was very slow this Spring and I felt a slightly larger pot than it was in would help give it a lift in this development stage. It’s now in the pot your black pine was in.

The Sacrifice branch is gone, it was putting a lot of effort into that and I felt it was better to push on with areas that were more important. As you can see, new growth is forthcoming.

You are getting a fair amount of juvenile foliage too but at least it’s healthy.

Mario Update

Another Mario tree update. If  you haven’t got a clue why I’d be doing this, CLICK HERE

First up is his Satsuki Azalea. It’s a variety called Subaru, so I’m told. I always thought the flower colour was equal throughout this tree, as you can see, I was wrong. Nice shades of pink.

Next up is his Japanese White Pine that has budded strongly this year.

His Korean Hornbeam that got a major haircut to produce back budding on some leggy branches. It’s working.

This is his Japanese Black Pine. It had been in a small pot and I thought that while he was away for a while we could get faster development from this tree by putting it in a bigger pot. I opted for a pond basket to improve the roots.

There you go Mario, that’s your tree fix sent all the way to you out in the sands 🙂

Mario’s Japanese White Pine Update

Part of the fun in looking after Mario’s bonsai while he’s working in Dubai is that I can put them up here to show him what he’s missing 😀

For Mario – Jasmine

This is Mario’s Jasmine that’s in my care while he’s sunning himself in Dubai for a few years. I gave it a little trim and de-wired it. I then applied a few bits of wire to sort out a few issues for him. I was told to take special care of this one as it’s Anetta’s favourite!