Marigoldman
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Joined: Tue Apr 28, 2009 12:44 pm
Location: Melbourne, Australia

Sargent Juniper - Brown leaves

I would appreciate any help regarding the first bonsai I have ever bought. It is a Sargent Juniper which I have had for 4 weeks. It was kept inside for the first 2 weeks before I read that they should be kept outside. It has been watered almost every day. When I bought it there were a few brown leaves at the base of a couple of branches and gradually there have been more and more leaves turning brown spreading upwards. I have posted two pictures of the tree below and would appreciate any explanation and advice as to what I can do to stop this trend continuing. I am a complete amateur when it comes to gardening, let alone 'bonsaiing'.

[img]https://i589.photobucket.com/albums/ss334/marigoldman/IMG_3781.jpg[/img]
[img]https://i589.photobucket.com/albums/ss334/marigoldman/IMG_3782.jpg[/img]

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Gnome
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Joined: Wed Jul 05, 2006 4:17 am
Location: Western PA USDA Zone 6A

Marigoldman,

Hello and welcome to The Helpful Gardener. Being from Australia you have dodged a bullet by discovering that your tree belongs outside. Since you only had it inside for a few weeks you probably caught it in time. It should be allowed to stay outside, unprotected, until the weather really gets rough. I leave mine out during the winter, on the ground and mulched in well from about December on.

You may be experiencing some effect from keeping it inside or you may be watering it too frequently, or possibly both.
It has been watered almost every day.
Are you certain that it required to be watered every day? You cannot water on a schedule, do so as necessary. This will be dependent upon your weather and the type of soil the tree is in, among other things. Can you describe the soil/medium the plant is potted in? Is it dense and peaty or loose and gritty? If the former, you are possibly watering too frequently. Has your your weather cooled down yet? If so this will also lessen the plants requirement for frequent watering.

Norm

Marigoldman
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Posts: 2
Joined: Tue Apr 28, 2009 12:44 pm
Location: Melbourne, Australia

Thanks for your reply Norm. I have only been watering the plant everyday because that's what I've read in a little book I have about Bonsais. The weather here is heading towrads winter conditions and the past week has seen much cooler days at around 14 degrees (Celcius) maximum, and what has become a rare occurence in this part of the world; RAIN!! I bought the tree from a nursery that only sells bonsais so I'm presuming that the soil is entirely suitable. I would describe it as fairly dense and peaty and at the moment, very wet. I had just watered it again this morning before I got on to the net, so I will leave it for a few days and check the soil again then.
As for the dead leaves, should I remove them or just leave them to drop off naturally? Appreciate your help! Cheers. :D

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majed
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Joined: Thu Apr 16, 2009 8:50 am
Location: pakistan

dear marigoldman
i have five plants of juniper,normally junipers demands less water,too much watering and wet soil will lead to big lost.always water the plant when it needs not frequently.for the branches check them if they are dead remove them.

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Joined: Wed Jul 05, 2006 4:17 am
Location: Western PA USDA Zone 6A

Marigoldman,
I have only been watering the plant everyday because that's what I've read in a little book I have about Bonsais.
A healthy Juniper in a free draining mix, during summer, might indeed require watering every day but that is not the kind of thing you can make hard and fast rule about.
I bought the tree from a nursery that only sells bonsais so I'm presuming that the soil is entirely suitable. I would describe it as fairly dense and peaty and at the moment, very wet.
Unfortunately this type of soil, while it might be suitable for some other species, often leads to problems with Junipers. Stop watering on a schedule. Insert a wooden skewer into soil and leave it there. Every day remove the skewer and check for moisture, if damp don't water that day.

Since you are going into winter the water requirements will slow greatly, perhaps even to the point of not watering at all for long stretches of time. During winter I keep mine on the ground (on a small bed of gravel to facilitate drainage) mulched in well and covered in snow once it arrives. We have had temperatures below 0F here and my tree comes through fine. During this time I don't water it at all but it may be different in your climate.

Re-potting will be a priority next spring so begin your research into proper bonsai mediums.

https://www.helpfulgardener.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=3422


Norm

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