So I recently purchased this Juniper from a nursery near my home. The guy who sold it to me owns a nursery that specializes in Bonsai. I bought this guy for $140 as he gave me a deal on it because I had come several days in a row to just look and check out the inventory he had. My question to you all is is this a healthy Bonsai tree? It seemed healthy to me when I bought it but now I'm noticing some of the branches are a light white color. The needles are a nice green color and I have only found a few needles that are yellow. The main trunk is very thick and a deep brown color. Other than the whiteness of some of the branches, I also noticed that the needles are a bit bare on the cascade of the tree. I chalked that up to being in the winter and filling out in the coming spring months. Also, the wiring still needs to be taken off. I haven't had time to remove it yet and not sure if I should. Some of the wiring seems to have been left on the branches for sometime and will cause some scaring. But I just wanted yall's opinion on it. Do you think it is healthy? I really love it as it is beautiful and an interesting style. Any advice or knowledge/insight will be greatly appreciated!
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Honest opinion.. I would have left it at the dealer. The wire has been left on a few YEARS too long. Latest when the wire is halfway into the bark, it should be taken off, which would happen after 1-2 years. This tree has damage which will remain with the tree for life.
Foliage is dull looking which may be normal for the species in winter. I have some junipers which you would proclaim dying in winter.
lucR wrote: I know where that is coming from: Peter Chan of Heron’s bonsai promotes that technique.
Yes, but he keeps his tree's protected in a greenhouse when using spagnum moss. Adjusted watering for this type of medium too. Its not just the spagnum moss that could save the plant. So it's the all over care and experiance that saves his tree's. Not knowing all details and advising put it in spagnum moss, is a to short of an awnser.
Thank you for your insight! Really appreciate it! I figured the wiring would cause permanent scarring. I noticed in some sections of the branches and trunk that had begun to grow around the wire when I was looking at it at the nursery. But I can deal with the scarring as this is my first "full grown" bonsai. I have some other ones that I am more passionate about (wisteria, red maple, blue spruce, cherry blossom, and another small juniper all only about 1-2 years old). I went into buying this one knowing that the wiring should have been taken off but I bought it because I absolutely loved the style of the tree. Ill be taking the wiring off tomorrow as that will be the first day this week I can sit down and properly work with the tree.
UPDATE: After I posted the original message, I went back outside to look at it more closely and I did find a few Juniper berries attached to some of the branches and a few that are about to bloom/sprout. I'm thinking that's a good sign as to whether or not it is healthy. I'm assuming it looks bare just because, like you suggested in your response, its the winter. Ill keep you updated when the spring comes around and let you know if it becomes more vivid and brightly colored.
When you start to remove the wire, make sure you have something to cover the damaged bark. Go slowly and try to as mush as possible lift the wire out of the grooves. Once removed you will have loads of places with damaged and slipped bark. I would personally use petroleum jelly (vaseline) to cover them. This reduces the drying out of the damaged areas and it aids recovery.
Junipers do not like to be repot. I would not take it out of its current container unless you are 95% certain the bareness is roots related. I see no reason for this assumption. Winter and possibly a poor position over the last summer AND the type of juniper can all be causes.