The Maple Year
Author - Craig Coussins
facilitate readers in other countries I have used seasons as well as UK
months. Please remember that you must take into consideration the variables
found within temperature in your own country.
Spring (February to March)
Although you can repot almost anytime this is the optimum period for the
majority of Maples. Kashima and Kiyohime will have started to move at this
time. Make sure they are protected. / Feed 0.10.10. (Zero Nitrogen) every 7
days to stop lush growth but only after the buds have opened.
Spring (March to May)
Start plucking out the bud centres
Early Summer (June)
After the first two feeds start feed High Nitrogen feed to build stamina on
young trees. If you want good Autumn colour cut down your High Nitrogen food.
If tree is healthy then consider full or partial defoliation. This can be
followed with selective wiring. Remember that the tree will have to be looked
after as the same as February to May or Spring. The problem in Summer defoliation
is Sun Burn rather than winds.
Wire trees with Cage (not tight) or protected wire and do any major pruning at
this time during summer dormancy. Reduce feeding until mid August or late mid
Start a weekly feed with low Nitrogen food. Last time for defoliation before
Autumn / Fall (September)
Trim all leaves that grow out of the planned shape. Stop feeding if leaves
start to change colour. It should be noted that good fall colour is achieved
with little of no feed....but the question is whether or not you want to risk
the tree's health for a short term benefit.
Complete your feeding with low or Zero Nitrogen Feed
Autumn / Early Winter (November)
Remove any dead leaves and make sure that the trees are protected against
winter frosts and wind.
Winter (December to January)
This is the other time when you can perform major surgery on your Bonsai.