Pom Pom Pine Maintenance Questions

Discussion in 'Landscape Maintenance' started by NJGardener, Apr 17, 2012.

  1. NJGardener

    NJGardener LawnSite Member
    Messages: 2

    I have a couple pom pom pines and one pine shrub that seem a bit over grown. How can I help them become more defined and dense? The stems coming from the pom pom branches only seem to have needles on the last third; the inside is mostly bare or dead needles. Is this normal or a sign of a poor maintenance? Is it permanent? What, if anything, should I do with all the new candles? I took these photos today. Here's are the photos on flickr: http://www.flickr.com/photos/77339332@N02/sets/72157629477558628/with/6942753670/

    Thanks for any suggestions. I'll be sure to follow up.
  2. agrostis

    agrostis LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,545

    My first reaction is not to do anything to those pine's. But then again i have never needed to do something like that. Defined and dense... More sunlight. Needle's on the last 1/3 of the branch's... I think that is natural. Candle's... I woudn't mess with those, that's new growth. But if you want to prune, that's your starting point. I really don't know, but i do think it is interesting. I will try to find out more. Maybe this will help.

  3. NJGardener

    NJGardener LawnSite Member
    Messages: 2

    Here's what I was able to dig up:

    Prune conifers, such as pines, by removing a portion of the "candle". The "candle" refers to the candle-like appearance of the new growth on the tips of pines in early spring. Once the "candle" has matured, buds present on it usually will not develop and grow; however, removal of the tip of the candle before it matures can stimulate buds into growth.

    The Colorado University Extension's master gardening site has a similar recommendation on their page for pruning evegreens.

    I've just been shearing some candles (not recommended), pinching others, and leaving yet others alone. I think I just need to wait and see what happens now, but I'd love to hear others' experiences.

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