Juniperus rigida_2.


This is the working material that we need for the next step. Especially the glasses are important.


The tree is now completely trimmed. This is the normal maintenance for this kind of tree. On the weaker branches we leave some growing points.


Every 4 to 5 years there is a lot of pruning to do on the  mature trees. Thinning and create empty spaces are the main steps. This pruning combined with botanical pruning. If I have to explain you would not understand. Pruning is more than making a tree more beautiful.



The way the work is carried out is important. Pruning without causing dammage to the buds and the needles.


A detailed photo of old age within the fine ramification. Age up to the top of the tree.


Detail of botanical pruning over all the growth around divided and yet all the same direction.


After 6 hours intensive pruning a break. Half way there with this job.


After many years of training, a new development in the crown. This is the future front. Now first is still one day picking needles. A good rigida consists of nearly the same amount of small branches (ramifications) as needles. So many branches with on each branch a few needles.

Juniperus rigida.








The needle Junipers, at the same stage like the tree on the photo – already with plentiful small ramifications-  are ready for removal of new growth.

This is the easy part. Refinement that has to be achieved afterwards is a more complicated matter, see tomorrow.



Sometimes trees are coming in for restyling but then suddenly, we notice a health problem. Of course, we’ll have to give priority to the health of the tree.


With this Satsuki Azalea it was an absolute concern. The owner was unaware of the fact that the roots have started to rot. Normally this can be noticed by a good observer around August. We were in time to save the tree and changed the soil mix which is better adapted for our Belgian climate.



A student of mine purchased a Japanese white Pine somewhere a while ago and brought this tree in for styling, which we did before winterfall. Today he came back in for a repotting. I did not know the tree’s history and while repotting, an unpleasant surprise came out of the pot.  All the upper roots and “nebari” have been rotting away and died eventually. This process must have started years ago. The previous owner used a plastic container to cover up the problem and sold to tree to another, less experienced beginner without informing him about this serious condition. And today,  this same problem was unexpectedly presented to me on the workshop. Now here’s one of the reasons why I do not like to work on trees that I don’t know.


We selected an even much deeper pot to cover up the problem but mainly because we need new roots at the base. This will work but it will take many years.