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I have learned a method to take air-layers from Japanese black pines. The main method is a two year method. In the spring of the current year you take the needles of the strongest candle(usually the strongest candle is the main candle on the apex), and strip the needles off all the needles below about one third down from the top of the candle. Then in the fall of the same year, you cut the top of the candle down. If you want the lowest branch to start at 4 inches above the soil then you would cut the tip four inches above where you stripped the needles. If you want the lowest branch to start 8 inches above the soil, then you would cut the tip off at 8 inches above where you took the needles off. In the spring of the following year, you would take an air-layer about 2cm from the lowest needle. I use a 4 inch pot and cut it in half and wrap it around the air layer and wire the cup back together. Then I fill the pot with wet green moss. If you use this method, you will need to check the moisture of the air layer every few days. Do not let the moss get completely dry. The other method is to take a 1 gallon freezer bag and slit it along one side and the bottom. Wrap the freezer bag around the air-layer. Tape the bottom of the bag back together just below the air-layer and fill the bag with damp green moss. Then close up the bag just above the cut on the air – layer. In the fall of the same year, you will be able to cut off the air layer and place the air layer into a growing pot. You will have a trunk size of about 12 – 1 inch in size with many candles popping out of the top.
I have developed a new method which I have developed in which I take the air- layer in the same year that I stripped the needles. Today I have taken about 100 air-layers. My method is to take the strongest candle, cut the top off and strip all the needles about 6 inches from the top. Then I take an air-layer in a 4 inch cup. I hope to take the air-layers off this fall. My success rate last year was about 50 per cent. I do not use any rooting hormone and I also learned not to keep the moss too wet. If the moss is kept too wet, the air – layer will rot and not callous over. I will let you know what my success rate is later in the year. If anyone has any questions, I will be happy to answer them for you. I also took mulitiple air-layers off of San Jose junipers and had about a 99 percent success rate. George
I am going to offer a discount on shipping to all e-bay customers who follow my blog. For the month of June, I will discount the shipping by 50%. To receive the discount, you must e-mail me on the e-bay sight after you have won and before you pay for the item. Just e-mail me that you want the 50% shipping discount offered on my blog and I will give you the discount. I am also offering a discount to those who visit the nursery(This discount does not apply to e-bay). I am offering a 20% discount on trees. This applies to all trees in nursery cans and to trees that are in bonsai pots(This offer is not good on trees growing in the ground). This discount is only for the month of June. Again it is only if you come to the nursery and only on trees. To get the discount, you must talk to George and mention the blog discount for the month of June. This is a reward for those who follow my blog. Keep checking back for other surprises in the future. George