Cryptomeria japonica 'tansu'

greenman28 NorCal 7b/8aDecember 27, 2008

Hi, all.

Thought I'd breathe a bit of life into the Forum by posting a couple pics and asking a question to go with them. Here's my Cryptomeria japonica 'tansu' (Japanese dwarf red "cedar," or so the label would indicate).

First pic from August:

Last month, it started to get some rusty orange interior branch die-back. I was worried. But the die-back seemed limited, so I didn't bother posting my fears at the time. Second pic from last month:

Now the whole thing has 'colored' slightly, so I'm hoping that this is all part of the winter bronzing. I received the tree as a gift last January, so this is technically my first full winter. Third and fourth pics show the darker coloration, as of a day or two ago:

Anyhow, there you can see the progression, as well as some of the orangy-purplish hues. The foliage is still soft....something I've been checking frequently. If the needles turn brittle, I'll know to scrap the thing! I'm assuming the tree is fine, but would like some re-assurance. You know how it is. ;)

Thanks for any insight you might offer.

Josh

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lucy(6)

Hi Josh, that's a fun thing to work on, and I wouldn't worry much about the few brown needles at the bottom and inside as they're probably just the usual 'old' ones being shed annually. The tinge is likely just from the cold, or if you think it isn't, is it getting watered too often? I am a bit curious as to why you haven't just planted it out to really fatten up, considering you certainly could where you live, and possibly thin the apex a little, though if that's part of your plan for later, then you'll leave it I guess.

    Bookmark   December 27, 2008 at 8:56PM
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mganga

I noticed the change in pot for the tree. Might this also be part of the reason for the change in needle colour? When did you re-pot the tree? Hope you can save it.
Peace,
JR

    Bookmark   December 27, 2008 at 9:28PM
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greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

Hi, Lucy!
Thanks! I knew you'd ask why I haven't put it in-ground yet! You're right, of course....I'm just worried about protecting it from deer properly, and I want to be able to turn it toward the sun. But you're right, to get a fat trunk it needs to be planted out. I also agree about thinning the apex....I do plan to open up the tree, but I'm not ready to do any styling just yet.

I was worried about excess water during the winter, so I re-potted (slip-potted?) in perlite, gravel, and bark (the usual).

Mganga, good eye!
I put it into a larger, deeper pot for the winter and because I read somewhere that they prefer a deeper pot for the roots. I didn't do any 'root work,' as it were, just plopped the tree into a pot and filled with the perlite-based mix mentioned above.

I guess I'll know by Spring! ;)

Josh

    Bookmark   December 28, 2008 at 4:34AM
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omniphasic(9 Ca)

This variety does naturally change color during the cooler months,and is named 'Japanese Red Cedar'.Make sure you keep it outdoors and in morning sun only during the warmer months.Yours is a nice speciman,with much potential.

    Bookmark   January 1, 2009 at 1:49AM
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greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

Hi, Omni, thanks for stopping by!
I appreciate the compliment! I hope this tree turns into something special, too! It's definitely a Japanese "cedar"...no question about that! And this is a dwarf, purportedly one of the slowest growing tsugi (is that correct usage?).

Yes, I'm aware that this tree changes color - I referred to this as the natural 'winter bronzing' in my initial posting. There are some really cool Threads here at GardenWeb on Cryptomeria (in winter color), if you're interested.

Lastly, I would NEVER DREAM of bringing this tree indoors...! I'm in California, zone 7/8!

Thanks again!

Josh

    Bookmark   January 2, 2009 at 12:38PM
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norcalconifers

I grow many types of cryptos, most "bronze" somewhat in the winter. 'Tansu' is a favorite. Yours has an appealing form. I like them because they never get out of hand. There is a great companion , named 'tensan' that is even denser. A little bit if die back is not anything to worry about. It looks healthy.
Steven

    Bookmark   January 9, 2009 at 7:01PM
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greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

Thanks, Steven!
I'll post new photos after the spring flush!

Josh

    Bookmark   January 9, 2009 at 8:45PM
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djjin14568

Your tree looks very much like a Juniper species in the photos.. But, I'm certainly no expert... I'm wondering how closely related to the junipers family Cedars are? Other than the trunk color, which looks less "reddish" than most of the junipers I've seen, the foliage and growth look identical.

I mostly only have Junipers and, on those it is usually ideal to remove any browned foliage and wait for new buds/shoots.

But, since this is Cryptomeria japonica 'tansu' that might be bad advice to mess with any foliage brown or not.

    Bookmark   January 14, 2009 at 10:09PM
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greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

It's not a Juniper, it's a Cryptomeria for certain.

In the spring, when the growth season starts again, I'll pinch back new foliage. For the time being, it's best to just wait. No rush.

Josh

    Bookmark   January 15, 2009 at 9:31AM
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greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

The 'tansu' is greening again, so I'm sure it'll be fine.
Thanks to all who re-assured me! Thought I'd add an update....
I couldn't wait for the new growth, however.
Pics from this afternoon.

Josh

    Bookmark   March 12, 2009 at 7:48PM
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norcalconifers

Looking very nice!
This crypto is one of my favorites, I enjoy the uneven bronzing in winter. The shape is just incredible. If you can find one, a 'Tenzan' is a great companion.
Steven

    Bookmark   March 16, 2009 at 7:41PM
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greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

Howdy, Steven!
Thanks for the suggestion - I'll keep my eyes peeled for a 'Tenzan.' I'm very
pleased with this little tree so far, and I'd like to grow some larger varieties
in the yard eventually. The uneven bronzing creates unique layers, indeed!

Josh

    Bookmark   March 20, 2009 at 4:07PM
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norcalconifers

Last year I did a bunch of cuttings os a very, very congested variety i was told was 'Ed Wood'. I cannot find any mention of this type anywhere else, but it is super congested, so much that when you poke it, the entire plant wiggles. It bronzes excatly like Tansu. If you want one, let me know and I can send you one.
Steven

    Bookmark   March 25, 2009 at 8:34PM
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hikari

Looking good there! :)

    Bookmark   March 26, 2009 at 9:06AM
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dsdevries

I would most certainly pop this tree back into the ground for a number of years. Fatten up the trunk and building a proper branch-structure. If planting it in the ground isn't an option, i would set it in a medium sized, black cement-mixing-cup. These attract sufficient warmth to ensure maximum growth. if a sement-mixing-cup isn't available, build a wooden crate, or just use a orange-crate and lay it in with a fine gauze to hold the soil. just let it grow during the growing season and cut back the long shoots every year in spring to just a view needles long before the new buds pop. continue this cylce for a few years to insure a proper renewal of the branches.

Good luck!

    Bookmark   March 31, 2009 at 7:11AM
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greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

Thanks, ds.
The problem with planting in-ground (in my yard) is twofold: heliotropism and deer.
First, I like to turn my plants often - very often - sometimes to encourage the plant
to take a "set," sometimes to avoid a "set." In-ground, I lose that option. Second, the deer.
I could cage this tree, but I don't really have a place for a caged tree in the proper
areas of the yard.

I might consider a wooden growing box, indeed. I potted this Tansu up not long ago, so I'll
go ahead and let it fill this terra cotta container with roots - then I'll bump it up again.

Last spring, my first spring with the tree, I did pinch out the long and/or large-needled
growth. I look forward to the flush of new growth this year!
Thanks again,

Josh

    Bookmark   April 1, 2009 at 8:37PM
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greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

Steven,
I'd like to e-mail you about that 'Ed Wood' offer...

Josh

    Bookmark   April 4, 2009 at 1:26PM
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beachplant(9b)

Nice tree and great advice. This is the reason I lurk here, to learn something.
Tally Ho!

    Bookmark   April 4, 2009 at 9:46PM
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greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a


_________________________________________________

I chopped the very top off - about two inches.

Josh

    Bookmark   June 16, 2009 at 7:46PM
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ryan_tree(7aVA)

Did you buy this from somewhere? Brussel's bonsai has Cryptomeria that look similar to yours. I like yours. Such great trees.

    Bookmark   June 23, 2009 at 2:36PM
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greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

Hi, Ryan.
This little Cryptomeria was a birthday gift from my sister, two Januaries ago.
She purchased it at a local nursery, in the bonsai starter section. I think it was $4.99
I recently purchased another Cryptomeria, as well - called 'Sekkan sugi.' That one
is for the yard, however.

Josh

    Bookmark   June 23, 2009 at 3:18PM
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head_cutter

Hey Josh...that would look great planted in the 'pond' area of my big Water Jasmine!!!

;))

Bob

    Bookmark   July 12, 2009 at 2:07AM
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greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

This Crypto is just a wee little thing! ;)
It would be swallowed by your Water Jasmine!

Josh

    Bookmark   July 14, 2009 at 3:42PM
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greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

Greetings!

This Winter has been especially wonderful for conifer color, with Cryptomeria the stars of the show!

You might remember this little guy, my 'Tansu.'

And just for good measure, here's another Cryptomeria that's showing nice rust purple coloration.
Purchased as 'Vilmoriniana,' but it has been suggested that this cultivar is actually 'Black Dragon.'

Josh

    Bookmark   January 18, 2012 at 7:57PM
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