Acer palmatum 'Dissectum Variegatum'

Discussion in 'Maples' started by ChrisProbert, Mar 11, 2019.

  1. ChrisProbert

    ChrisProbert Active Member

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    For some years I have been growing this and a pretty similar variety called 'Toyama Nishiki'. To say they have a weeping habit is an understatement: these guys are terminally depressed! When we moved them to our present garden we tried to make them a little more upright by angling the stems back slightly in planting: they have responded by growing downwards at an even steeper angle. One is still in the ground but the other is in a tall pot simply to give it some height down which to tumble. They are alive and kicking, but I can't say they are looking great for their age.

    Please can anybody offer advice or share experience on ways to grow these ?closely related? varieties which keep them happy and show them off at their best? Thank you.
     
  2. JT1

    JT1 Contributor

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    This cultivar can be variable, that's part of why a few different cultivars are listed that are very similar. Can you upload a picture to give us a clear understanding of the two trees in question?

    One of the things a grower should do is graft these strong or strict weeping cultivars on standard or a tall understock to accommodate for the strong weeping habit. Too late for your trees, as this is not a solution anymore. So we can compensate a few ways. The first is a tall pot, you got that covered! Second is plant on a hill. This could be man made or natural. Waterfall, pond, raised bed, ect can all give height.

    Get a leader going this June (branches are too brittle right now, needs to be done during the growing season in late Spring). This will give you height for strict weepers. As it reaches the top of your bamboo cane weeping branches will form off the leader. These in time will shade lower branches naturally pruning the lower branches. You will need to keep up with seasonal pruning to keep the branches from touching the ground. This can be done at the end of every seasonal growth push. Usually happens twice a season.

    Change growth direction through pruning. This is a labor intensive commitment through the trees teenage years. Avoid synthetic fertilizer (only organic) and high nitrogen. As the tree will out grow itself and keeping up with it will be exhausting. With high nitrogen you will never get it to look right. You will notice the bud pairs change orientation as you look down the stem. Shorten the stem back to a vertical leaf where it attaches to the stem. New growth will form upward and on the other side of the stem downward. Remove the downward new growth. This changes the direction of the branch giving it an arching appearance. Continue to prune this way over time with all branches and you will change the look and feel of the tree. Cut occasionally at the horizontal leaves, then later at vertical. This gives the tree a more diverse branching network, rather than long singular branches. This slows the growth and the speed in which it reaches the ground.

    I have more advice and techniques but have run out of time. Anyway this gives you something to consider for now. When you get a free chance upload some pictures to give us an idea of the trees personality and surrounding environment. Thanks!
     
  3. ChrisProbert

    ChrisProbert Active Member

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    Wow JT, thank you! Such a lot of good advice! I will gladly upload some pictures as soon as the wind stops blowing the rain horizontally past the windows at 60 mph, like it has for the past three days.
     
  4. ChrisProbert

    ChrisProbert Active Member

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    OK, the rain has stopped, so here are a few pictures. It's a dull day and there are no leaves yet, but I've done my best.
    1 A.p. Toyama Nishiki (in ground) 2 & 3 A.p.'Dissectum Variegatum' (seems to be labelled 'Ornatum Variegatum' - old label!)
     

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  5. bambusue

    bambusue New Member

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    Thought you would be interested in a photo of mine. This is the 4th year I've had it; the graft is about 5" off the ground (top of the soil since this is in a pot) to begin with. Every spring I have lashed it to a bamboo stake, and this is the wavy result. Now i'm going to let it spill over and do whatever it wants. I haven't seen photos of them very big anyway, but the branching now will be appropriate, I think.
     

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