With summer arriving for a few days in southern England I have been paying close attention to my watering and fertilising - watering sometimes 3 times on the very hot days. I have been looking at the trees a lot but not doing much to them. The two large pines are interesting to watch as they are next to each other on the benches and on the same watering and food regime and yet the larger one is about 6 weeks behind in its growth cycle.
Today I noticed that the late winter wiring on some inner branches had already bitten in very severely and needed to be taken off before it was lost under the new growth.
I had also nibbled off all the long candles a while ago and the shorter ones have come out nicely - so they are pleasingly balanced for growth. They are now all evenly cut back to a minimum of maybe 12 pairs of needles and longer where needed. So both of the larger pines are now trimmed up and without wire. I will have a think about when I will apply the wire again. Certainly not soon as they are gaining weight so quickly I would need to redo it every few weeks.
Quite a lot of material was removed from the larger pine and a fine trimming of the smaller one was done. I won't cut again this year as I want the buds to form for next years growth. I may remove some buds. Last year I made the mistake of cutting back some branches in winter and they didn’t grow at all this year.
The larger pine is now cut for the summer and looking quite nice. Needs wire to bring a bit of order. I removed a large branch about halfway up a few weeks ago. I am trying to leave a lot of the branches I remove so that I can leave some deadwood - without creating a deadwood monster - as the wild trees I see often have some dead branches on the way up and that is the effect I want. I want the right side a bit lower to separate the foliage pads a bit better so I may do a guy-wire to get it down.
Also going to need a new pot - something a bit bigger as its starting to look very unbalanced to my eye. Probably a similar Jixing - but a little bigger. The pot for the other one is more complicated. I seem to be doing some sort of a semi-cascade thing.