Pruning: Re-potting a mature japanese maple

Discussion in 'Maples' started by Otto Bjornson, May 2, 2021.

  1. Otto Bjornson

    Otto Bjornson Active Member

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    chilliwack BC, Canada
    Several of our trees on our property have been in containers for over 40 years now ( since initial graft )

    Although the tree pot does need to be increased there does come a point when a final resting container is enough.

    A 22" to 24" diameter top with a depth of 18" - 22" is more then enough.

    An example would be our oldest seiryu. We did aquire this specimen when we started our nursery operation in 1993. It was already approx 15 years old then. We took over an existing small independent operation and purchased the entire remaining inventory and had it shipped to our property ( approx 10 km. distance between both homes)

    It would have been in a 10 gallon pot back then. We eventually settled on a 24" - 24" cedar box 20" in height back in 2008.

    We recently re potted the same tree last fall (2020), mid september into a smaller 22" - 22" diameter with 18" depth.
    I also take a sharp saw when I took the tree out of the existing box and trimmed the entire root structure back to approx. 16" - 16" inches with a 14" depth.

    When a tree is container grown its whole life the root structure is very fiborous with very few "main" root stems, so easy to cut down to size.

    The reason we re pot big specimens in september is because the second growth flush is complete and it is just about to enter dormancy. Also it lets the roots develop over remaining months until the following spring which will result in a nice spring growth opening.

    Here are two pics of the tree take this morning, and by the way this one is my favorite of all on the property:

    Attached Files:

  2. Acerholic

    Acerholic Paragon of Plants Forums Moderator VCBF Cherry Scout Maple Society

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    Hampshire England Zone 8b UK
    Wonderful history of the Seiryu and to finish up an amazing photo of the said tree. Enjoyed this Otto.
    Otto Bjornson likes this.

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