Help me save my 'Kinshi'!

Discussion in 'Maples' started by ChrisProbert, May 2, 2018.

  1. ChrisProbert

    ChrisProbert Active Member

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    Please help if you can. My A.palmatum 'Kinshi', grown in a large pot, suffered a watering disaster during last year's French drought. The drought is over (oh boy! that's an understatement!), but my tree is in a very poor way. I thought it was stone dead, but spring has brought strong shoots of growth at the tips of a couple of the higher branches and from the trunk just above the graft.

    My tree clearly wants to live, but what can I do to help it? Cut back 'dead' branches to the trunk, or leave them to see if any more growth appears? Re-pot? Feed? Anything else I can do to stimulate re-growth? (I realise a decent shape may be a while in coming.) Sun? Shade?

    All advice gratefully received - thank you!
     
  2. emery

    emery Renowned Contributor Maple Society 10 Years

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    Can you give us a picture Chris? It sounds like it's been through the wars -- and last year plus the past winter certainly was -- but will recover.

    I'd suggest cutting off wood that is obviously dead, when you scratch it under the bark is brown, not green. It's hard to say if it will come back from the base and the top at the same time, but if the growth on top is strong enough you might want to leave it.

    Only dappled sun, no direct sun for now. Don't over water.

    Best, -E
     
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  3. AlainK

    AlainK Renowned Contributor Forums Moderator Maple Society 10 Years

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    I second what Emery wrote.

    I often use "Solabiol - stimulateur racinaire" on plants that need to recover.
     
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  4. ChrisProbert

    ChrisProbert Active Member

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    Sorry to be slow to reply to you both. I've tried (and failed!) to get a decent picture of this tree, now planted in a Favoured Spot. Here is a bad picture, sorry, especially for the riot of wildflowers. The growing bits are out along branches higher up on the right-hand side, and lower down on the left. Chris
     
  5. ChrisProbert

    ChrisProbert Active Member

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    Hmm, that upload didn't go well now, did it?! I've watched the 'help' video, and now I will try again.
     

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  6. JT1

    JT1 Contributor 10 Years

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    If that is the correct picture, then I hate to break the bad new that the tree did not make it.

    From what I can see all branch unions have dark areas tips are all turning straw color indication of branch failure, no signs of healthy color in the trunk. Do you have a picture of the graft Union? Otherwise just scratch the surface of the trunk to see if any green exists under the bark. No green=no life.
     
    Last edited: May 13, 2018
  7. ChrisProbert

    ChrisProbert Active Member

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    Hi JT1. Sorry, that's the difficulty of photographing it in that location. There are definite bits of 'Kinshi' at the top on one side, lower down on the other, and breaking from the trunk near (but above) the graft union. My wife planted it there while I wasn't looking - it would have been easier to photograph it its previous pot, against a plain background!
     
  8. ChrisProbert

    ChrisProbert Active Member

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    PS I do have a (tiny) replacement if this does 'pop its clogs', but I'm trying to give it any chance I can to recover.
     
  9. JT1

    JT1 Contributor 10 Years

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    I would wait and see, but keep the replacement in mind as it may be needed in the future if this tree continues to decline. Later today I will try to provide a few tips if others don't chime in beforehand.
     
  10. ChrisProbert

    ChrisProbert Active Member

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    Thank you again! I've just been up and done the bark scratch test, and to my amazement much of it is green, though the already shooting spots are continuing to grow, rather than other growth erupting. We planted it rather than keep it in a pot because it seemed the most straightforward way to ensure stable soil moisture and nutrition. I look firward to reading your further advice.
     
  11. emery

    emery Renowned Contributor Maple Society 10 Years

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    Hi Chris, I think your spot is too wet, I'd dig it up and replant this fall, being careful to do a mound so that the base of the plant is raised a few inches above the mud around it.

    As you know the silly amounts of rain this winter made it difficult for anything in a wet or even wettish place, that is probably at the "roots" of your problem.
     
  12. ChrisProbert

    ChrisProbert Active Member

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    Hi emery and thank you. It has only been in that spot for three days, and had just been watered when the picture was taken. The 'disaster' was last summer, in a pot that dried out. Yes - wasn't it a difficult winter! Oddly though, trees are flowering brilliantly this spring, probably out of sheer joy that the rain has stopped at last. I am amazed to see flowers on an Elm I planted - insignificant flowers, hard to photograph, but a smell I'd forgotten since childhood!
     
  13. emery

    emery Renowned Contributor Maple Society 10 Years

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    Ah, you reassure me! :) Yes it's a beautiful spring, and flowering is heavy everywhere that experienced the early spring and freeze last April. Apparently this is a normal response, the plants feel threatened and make more seed the next year. It's a mast year for beeches too, maybe the oaks also though too early to tell. But certainly for maples! We were at Wespelaar and Herkenrode this past weekend with the Maple Society for the study weekend, and the many maples were heavy with flowers, it was gorgeous!

    I hope your elm holds up, I planted several but they all broke in the wind sadly and had to be taken down. Wonderful trees, and fast growing here, too.
     
  14. ChrisProbert

    ChrisProbert Active Member

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    Good morning from France! I just thought I'd pop in and give an update about my 'Kinshi', which is a very odd shape now, but certainly has the will to live! Here is a picture of it this morning.
     

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  15. Acerholic

    Acerholic Paragon of Plants Forums Moderator VCBF Cherry Scout Maple Society

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    @ChrisProbert good morning Chris, I love a success story and your photo has really cheered me up. Think your Kinshi is going to be very special to you now. Great photo !!
     
  16. ChrisProbert

    ChrisProbert Active Member

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    Thank you! Loving acers but never having enough money to buy more than tiny ones has encouraged me to be patient!
     
  17. Acerholic

    Acerholic Paragon of Plants Forums Moderator VCBF Cherry Scout Maple Society

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    @ChrisProbert agreed the large specimens are now silly prices, but watching small ones grow and take shape is so much fun, but I do find they need a lot of care for the first three years and even then there is high loss rate.
    Hope you post a photo of your Kinshi when it turns to those amazing oranges in a couple of weeks!!?
     

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