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We Have A New Vanderwolf’s Pyramid And Planted It As…

Jil Asked

We have a new Vanderwolf’s Pyramid and planted it as instructed (it is about 4 feet tall). We have been watering to establish it, etc., and now it is turning yellow on some of the pine leaves. We gave it root stimulator when we planted it and red worm tea. We deep water it about 1 time a week. Should we be doing something we are not? Or are we overdoing something?

The Gardener’s Answer

Hi, Jil in Utah: There is always a certain amount of stress involved with any new addition to the garden. Reducing stress is key to a long-lived healthy plant. Hopefully you have chosen a space where your pine will receive a minimum of six hours of direct sun. They prefer a well-drained soil and you want to avoid adding more root stimulator as well as fertilizer. It is best for the pine to become established in the natural environment, and promoting growth at this time of year is not recommended since the tender new growth is more susceptible to winter damage. As for moisture, your evergreen certainly needs water to encourage the roots to spread out, but at this time of year as the temperatures are cooler and Mother Nature typically gives us sufficient rainfall you will not need to water as much as you would during the hot summer months. At this point you will want to check the moisture level around the root ball. You can do this by sticking your finger in the soil at least a couple of inches. If it is moist then there is no reason to water. Adding a thin layer of mulch (2-3 inches) will help keep the moisture in. Sometimes we can overdo it when it comes to pampering our plants. They are tough and less is better at this time of year. The yellow needles can be an indication of too much moisture, but at this time of year it is perfectly normal for all pines to shed some of their inner foliage in order to make room for new growth.

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