Brachichiton rupestris new leaf burning off

Acerifolius, Populneus, Rupestris etc
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Rainbow Fig
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Brachichiton rupestris new leaf burning off

Post by Rainbow Fig »

Hi, My old Bottle tree literati dropped all the old leaves through winter and spring, and I tipped out the newest buds as they were emerging. Now it has been about 3 or more months and each time the new buds burst into leaf, they all shrivel up and drop off at about 4-5mm long.
Does anyone else get this problem?
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Re: Brachichiton rupestris new leaf burning off

Post by Milo »

Hi Rainbow Fig
With out a pic of your tree there's not much to work with on what happening .

So I'll list thing that you should be doing and my experience of what happens to the tree over the year, Up north you should have a longer growing period than down south where I am. (northern Vic, we had a very cold spring this year so my Brachy's are just taking off now.

Watering - once a week during winter , daily through spring and 2-3 times through the very hot part of summer. (you can let them dry out completely in early spring and it will drop all there leaves , say a couple of weeks . then cut back hard and re pot )

Fertilizer - Fortnightly from spring through to Autumn (normal strength ,any fert )

Potting - Quality free draining native mix (a good size pot to allow roots to form without hitting bottom of pot over the 1 or 2 years between potting. ( If its stuffed into a tiny pot,It might look great) but you won't be able to keep the water up to it, the root won't grow and will not be able to support the growth on top ) When re potting cut back roots that are as thick or thicker than your little finger and dust with root hormone

Wiring - new shoots allow to grow to say 25 to 30 mm then carefully lay a wire across the shoot to take it in the direction you want it go (do not tip prune yet) at 40 to 50 mm you can lightly wire to bend shoot in the direction you want it to go. ( only important in the first 20 to 30 mm as the rest will be cut off next year) only tip prune the strongest shoot to allow the other shoots to catch up.

Pruning - Allow shoot to get to the thickness of your little finger before cutting to about 20 or 30 mm ( If you are following the above recommendations you may achieve that in the 6 to 8 month growing period you should have up north. It takes me 2 years to get that growth down south.

Hope this helps you get your Bracky growing again, if not it might help others to get theirs growing better.

Milo
Rainbow Fig
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Re: Brachichiton rupestris new leaf burning off

Post by Rainbow Fig »

Thanks Milo for the reply.
Plenty of good advice.
Couldn't photograph the finer detail with the phone, but have posted 2 pics, one in October and one today. In the pic you can see that 2 branches died off completely at the node, and had resin seeming there for some time till it hardened.
All the light branches and quite a few of the thicker sections have back buds all along them, but none are sprouting.
Each time the leaves appear they just shrivel off.
I have heard that it may be spider mites, so have treated a couple times with Maverick, still waiting for the outcome of that one.

Hmm, can't seem to work out how to attach pics, might have to start a new thread?

Thanx again.
RF
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Re: Brachichiton rupestris new leaf burning off

Post by Rainbow Fig »

Aha, see how that goes.
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Ryceman3
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Re: Brachichiton rupestris new leaf burning off

Post by Ryceman3 »

Rainbow Fig wrote:
Hmm, can't seem to work out how to attach pics, might have to start a new thread?
Give this a whirl RF ...

viewtopic.php?f=97&t=54&start=0

Hopefully that sorts you out.
Rainbow Fig
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Re: Brachichiton rupestris new leaf burning off

Post by Rainbow Fig »

Thanks try again. Funny I have done it before so will see if the mbs are too large an it was being blocked.
GI
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Re: Brachichiton rupestris new leaf burning off

Post by Milo »

Hi R F
I would hazard a guess that it is pot bound. You need to lift it out of the pot (and take pic of the base), Remove all the soil (take another pic) Dust the roots with rooting hormone and repot with new soil into a slightly larger pot ensuring 20 to 30 mm of soil under roots.

The main tap root and any root larger than a pencil needs to be cut back, but not till next spring, giving it time to regain its strength. Don't tip prune this season

Each time you repot you can lift the tree out of the ground a little and maybe find a different angle, You may need to review you literati style as the tree will continue to grow thicker and higher if not cut back. (the base is always going to look interesting regardless of style)
A1283650.jpg
When you do cut the large roots, they need need to be sealed (the only sealant that I have found to dry hard over the moist cut is A.T.C.S Tree wound dressing (Tess from Bonsai North side Brisbane should have it on the shelf , or find it on the internet)
root_0178_250.jpg
DSCF0343.jpg
Sept 2015.jpg

The tree can be left out over night to ensure the sealant has hardened, then trim off a couple of mm around the edges of the cuts and cover with rooting hormone and repot

If there is any rot cut out all rot and seal with the ATCS sealant.

Hope this is of help, post the pics of the roots when you have a look ( I left a practise tree out bare rooted for a week and repotted , did not miss a beat, started to reshoot after 3 weeks)

Milo
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Rainbow Fig
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Re: Brachichiton rupestris new leaf burning off

Post by Rainbow Fig »

Thanx Milo will give it a try. It is from seed 1985 and never been rootpruned on the taproots. Has been repotted into that pot about 2 years ago? So will raise it up and resoil. Ta
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Re: Brachichiton rupestris new leaf burning off

Post by Rainbow Fig »

Thanks again Milo. I did lift the tree and found that far from root bound, there was about 2/3 of the pot under the feeder roots totally sodden with smelly water and the drainage mesh all but blocked with mud. Wet feet? I have repotted with debco plugger soil and put in a shallower pot for awhile to see if any improvement. Only a light trim of the longest roots. If no improvement i may consider cutting back to bare hard wood? Ssee how we go. GI
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Re: Brachichiton rupestris new leaf burning off

Post by Max »

Rainbow Fig hi......How do you get branching on a bottle tree ?
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