Black Pines in June

We have come full circle with the black pine (and red pine) development classes taught by Lawrence LeClaire.  Last weekend we worked through the process of cutting candles from trees our trees grown bushy and strong over the last 3-4 months.

Why cut candles? Oh, great! We had cheered on the push of growth that occurred almost before our eyes.  The trees were growing and taking on the fullness we had been hoping for.  And NOW…he wants us to cut all the candles that have opened up??? Is this some sort of weird bonsai initiation????

OK…trust the teacher.  The cutting is done to force budding in the pines.  Not all branches are blessed with buds where we want them.  The cutting stimulates buds to grow below the cut candles.

When we begin the next cycle of pine development in December (approximate) we should have many buds to choose from to help further develop the tree.  By waiting to wire the tree in December the buds will have hardened a bit. By leaving all the buds that present after candle cutting, you can knock off the odd ones and choose what is best for your preferred design as you wire.  (See the Black Pine Chart in an earlier post) 

Stay tuned for more information on pine development.

And…Thanks, Lawrence, for a great year of pines!!

Visit for some interesting pine development pics by Jonas Dupuich.

© Fort Walton Beach Bonsai Society (FWBBS) ELF 2020