builder0101
Cool Member
Posts: 72
Joined: Fri Oct 09, 2009 11:23 pm
Location: Illinois

Need advice on these Dogwood prospects.

Ok. So I am walking my property and I am considering these Kousa. They are aprox 11 yrs old. They were Cherokee Chief Kousa Dogwoods grafted onto Hardy stock. Last winter killed the Cherokee. So I am left with these 2.5" caliper trunks and all of this outgrowth. I think I may have something here. I definately want them out of my lawn. Where do I start? Wait till full dormancy, lift and chop roots, plant in 8" pots, cold frame, wait?

[img]https://i956.photobucket.com/albums/ae46/builder0101/Kousa2.jpg[/img]

[img]https://i956.photobucket.com/albums/ae46/builder0101/Kousa1.jpg[/img]

HELP
All suggestions will be appreciated.

Thanks,

Mike.

JTred
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Posts: 380
Joined: Wed Dec 24, 2008 7:05 am
Location: Elizabeth, PA

from https://www.dogwood-tree.com/1-dogwood-care.htm
As with most trees, spring is the best time to plant flowering dogwoods before tree growth starts when the air is cooler and the ground moist.
If it can wait until the spring thaw I would go with that. That way you don't have to worry about damaged or unestablished roots being exposed to harsh temperatures.

Oh, and did the grafted part of both of the trees die, whereas the root stock lived and put out new growth? If so that is really cool, I didn't know that could happen.

builder0101
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Posts: 72
Joined: Fri Oct 09, 2009 11:23 pm
Location: Illinois

JT,

Not sure we are on the same page. I don't want to plant them I want to Bonsai them. Would it not be best to chop the roots in while they are dormant and place them in training pots? When they wake up they will tell me what foliage they will support. The trunk tickness is already there. Tapering mechanically may not be an option as I think the Dogwood is sensitive to scarring, but then since I had no plans to keep them till now I did not bother avoiding hitting them with the lawn mower. They are pretty scarred up.

Thanks,

Mike.

Rosaelyn
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Location: Brighton, Michigan

I would think it would be even more important to wait until the worst of winter is over before pulling them up if you intend to put them straight into a bonsai pot. That will leave very little protection for the root system from the freezing and wind.

Ideally, it should be a slower pot transition, though. A training pot (or even a "normal" pot) first, and then move to a bonsai pot. Because you don't want to remove too much of the root system right away. If they have been growing in the ground for 11 years, they will probably have an extensive root system, and cutting off too much at once may be detrimental.

Either way, early spring would be the better time to transplant.
Rosaelyn @}>---'---,---

If you would know strength and patience, welcome the company of trees. ~ Hal Borland

JTred
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Location: Elizabeth, PA

builder0101 wrote:JT,

Not sure we are on the same page. I don't want to plant them I want to Bonsai them. Would it not be best to chop the roots in while they are dormant and place them in training pots? When they wake up they will tell me what foliage they will support. The trunk tickness is already there. Tapering mechanically may not be an option as I think the Dogwood is sensitive to scarring, but then since I had no plans to keep them till now I did not bother avoiding hitting them with the lawn mower. They are pretty scarred up.

Thanks,

Mike.
Sorry about the confusion, I figured you were planning on going from the ground to a pot. I probably should have mentioned that even though that site was about planting a balled and burlapped tree into the ground, it is still a transplant, and is similar to potting. From the few sites I visited it seems like dogwood roots are susceptible to damage, as they all mentioned taking extra care to not damage the roots. Think about it this way, if that site is advocating waiting until spring to transplant a tree into the ground, where it is more protected than in a pot, then you should probably do the same for going from the ground to a pot, especially since you've had a winter severe enough to kill the grafted portion already.

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Gnome
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Mike,

I feel basically the same as the others, spring time just at/before bud break would be the time to lift them. Or you can leave them where they are for a few seasons and next spring prune the dead portions out. They might tend to heal over more quickly if the large root mass is retained to support them.

One strategy for lifting trees is to severe one half of the roots one year and the other half the next and lift the tree in the third year. If you really need them gone, spring would be best. I often put collected trees in relatively large but shallow wooden boxes with slatted bottoms. This eases the transition to a pot and allows a few seasons of recovery before continuing with the transition to a smaller pot.

[url=https://img508.imageshack.us/i/growboxsv9.jpg/][img]https://img508.imageshack.us/img508/8238/growboxsv9.th.jpg[/img][/url]

Often Pond baskets are used to encourage a mass of fine feeder roots before moving trees to bonsai pots.

[url=https://img210.imageshack.us/i/81837253yd6.jpg/][img]https://img210.imageshack.us/img210/4519/81837253yd6.th.jpg[/img][/url]


Norm

builder0101
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Joined: Fri Oct 09, 2009 11:23 pm
Location: Illinois

Thanks JT,

I guess I misunderstood. Sorry. I do not want them where they are. The only reason they are still there is I never had the time to jerk them out and burn them. Now I have a different plan for them. I think maby with all of the problems associated with the species in relation to lifting, moving, pruning, etc. Maby I shuld just #^%* can the whole idea.

Gnome,

Thanks for the advice. So if I understand I would send trenching spade down and sever what I aproximate would be half of the root system based on things like drip line etc. Then next year repeat the process taking half again. then 1 year and lift, and pot and wait. Don't know if I have the gumption. Maby I will lift the trees removing 1/3 of root system, and plant in a small group as soon as fully dormant but b-4 ground freeze. Then next spring I will see if any survived. I must speed the project up at the risk of loosing them as I must move them. The nice thing about these is that I have a 10+ year old trunk system on 7 potential bonsai. Maby I will get lucky with 3 or so. What does the slatted pot do? I assume I submerge it in the ground. Or do I sit it on top of grade and allow some roots to enter the earth as they want?

Thanks,

Mike.

JTred
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Joined: Wed Dec 24, 2008 7:05 am
Location: Elizabeth, PA

If they have absolutely got to go before spring, then I would say go with the large, shallow boxes that gnome suggested, and maybe try to give them somewhat of a sheltered winter. Do you have a shed or unheated garage that would protect them from the wind, but still give a full dormancy? Or you could do what you mentioned and pot them, then bury the pots in sand, preferably in a spot protected from wind. A final idea would be to pot them, then cover the pots in a thick mulch, again in a protected spot. Make sure whatever you do, they get covered with a good layer of snow, it acts as an insulator and keeps everything around 30F. If you can leave them till spring I would do that, but if they've gotta go, they've gotta go, do what you can and see what happens. Good luck!

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