Just snip off the dead portion of the branch with pruners. With proper pruning, many varieties of Japanese dwarf maple trees can be grown … Japanese maples: problem solving. Most maples that take good sun will also take part sun. When you prune your … If you want a healthy, happy, container grown Japanese maple, you’ll need to plant your tree in a container that is about twice the size of the tree’s root system. As with most plants, maples don’t love to be overwatered. Many of the cultivars are ideal subjects for pots because of their tolerance, adaptability, shallow fibrous root systems, minimal feeding needs, an enormous choice of shapes, sizes, and colours. Organic fertilizer is slow releasing and contains beneficial fungus and bacteria that will help your plant absorb more water and nutrients. We might perceive it as fragile and delicate, and we’re afraid to mess up its natural beauty through improper pruning. The damp environment may make some maples more susceptible to bacterial and fungal diseases. The smaller the mature size of the species, the more likely it is that the tree will grow happily in a large pot. It's important to follow the directions carefully. Fit the burlap over the container and trace with a felt pen. Another sign that it’s time to root prune is that the top of the tree leaves are crispy and unhealthy looking. In the Pacific Northwest, it's not necessary to water your maple during the rainy season, unless it is under cover. Many different types of trees thrive in containers. Tips For Winterizing Japanese Maple Trees As winter approaches your maples are losing their leaves, going dormant and preparing for winter. Young trees need to be transplanted into the next size pot when the roots are touching the sides and bottom of their container. Apply your organic fertilizer in mid-March and again around July 4th. Light pruning or pinching can be done in spring to direct growth. Root pruning … Avoid chopping any large, main roots as you don’t want to disturb the main system. Keep the soil moist but not wet. Growing Japanese Maples in Containers . If you pick a tree that doesn’t get taller than 10 feet (3 m.) tall, you won’t have to do annual pruning. This helps to settle the roots in the soil. Thats it! If you cut too far out, you will leave an unsightly stub. To minimize stress, dieback, and regrowth, do not remove a side branch that exceeds half the diameter of the parent stem. Pruning a maple tree clears out space around the branches. Watering Maples. Japanese maples are rated for zone 5b. If you have a porch, a patio or even a fire escape, you have what you need to start growing Japanese maples in containers. The extreme diversity within this single plant species has led to 100’s of individual varieties which differ as much as separate species in other plant families. Japanese maples won't survive in soggy soil. The ease with which Japanese maples adapt to container growth means that they are one of the best subjects for this method. Smaller species and dwarf varieties of evergreens usually do well as container grown plants. EB Stone’s Rhody, Azalea, and Camellia food is a good choice. Minerals keep your container maple vigorous and enhance leaf color. We suggest checking every 7-8 years. Once the tree is potted, water it well. Western sun & rooftop decks can be challenging for maples that prefer more shade. This lets smaller roots develop. Japanese maples can handle anything from a light trim to more extensive pruning, depending on the time of year and the tree's health. There are several products out on the market: Iron-tome, Ferti-lome Iron and Dr. Iron are some of them. If you can't mix, use straight Edna's. It’s not that hard to start growing Japanese maples in containers. Some varieties need protection from hot afternoon sun and wind, so a location with bright shade or only morning sun will best suit most potted maples. Try not to prune your maples during the rainy season. You can grow both evergreen and deciduous trees in containers. Constantly soggy soil will lead to root root rot, which is the most prevalent killer of Japanese maples in containers, and in the ground. The damp environment may make some maples more susceptible to bacterial and fungal diseases. Pruning a Japanese maple tree is not necessarily difficult, but may be intimidating at first — particularly for a weeping or “laceleaf” cultivar (Acer palmatum Var. … Select a container that’s no more than twice the volume of roots. Acer palmatum 'Inaba Shidare' Weeping Japanese Maple Tree (photo by Trevor Brien / My Garden Plot) Tags: Best in Fall, Best in Summer, Container Gardening, Deciduous, Deer Resistant, Low Maintenance, Pruning, Trees. If growing them in zone 5, then you should protect them in winter by plunging the pot in the ground or covering the pots in leaves for extra insulation. These things can keep the tree healthy and prevent certain diseases from developing. If pruning is necessary, prune during the dormant season and avoid pruning in spring when the sap is running. Make sure there’s a drainage hole — Japanese maples will not survive in soggy soil. And, it’s easy to keep them happy and healthy when you meet their basic needs. We know we don’t prune it the same way we … Japanese maple bonsai grow roots quickly and vigorously and will require root pruning at the time of repotting. Cut with scissors for a perfect fit to sit inside the lip of the container. 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The ideal soil mix for a maple in a container is one-half EB Stone Azalea Mix blended with one-half Edna's Best Potting Soil. Stay away from manures and from water-soluble fertilizers, especially with high nitrogen. Even those bought with the intention of being ‘specimens’ somehow seem to need the protection of a few small shrubs – or simply a covering up of the bare earthy around. Planting Japanese maples in containers is a great opportunity to add beauty, height & interest to your view, whether it’s on a back porch patio or part of a larger landscape. Root prune your  container maples when they are so root bound that water doesn't soak through the pot. Potting soil in a container may become exhausted after a few years. Clip out the big, wood roots. Try not to prune your maples during the rainy season. If you cut too close to the parent stem (a flush cut), a column of rot will enter the stem. Place the Maple in the center of the newly dug hole and fill in with soil. As a rule, container-grown plants loose one zone of hardiness so container-grown Japanese maples are really rated for zone 6b. Remove badly-placed or crossing shoots to encourage a lovely branch pattern. Japanese maples are low-maintenance trees with beautiful red foliage. Root pruning is not necessary during this stage, however it is important to cut roots that are becoming large and woody. Use good quality potting soil to fill the pot. June through August is good for pruning aesthetically, since you can see the leaves and the overall shape of the tree. Having soil that is constantly over saturated with water will suffocate the roots from air and can cause the roots to rot. The moisture in the soil will be more consistent between watering cycles. Can Japanese maples be grown in containers? Chunky bark makes a great mulch, or you can create summer covers from burlap to decrease  evaporation. Fertilize once or twice during the growing season using a slow release organic fertilizer that is formulated for acid-loving plants. Do not remove any branches larger than a pencils width. Caring for a Japanese Maple in a Pot. Select a container that’s no more than twice the volume of roots. Don’t fertilize until spring, and even then dilute a water-based fertilizer to half-strength. Larger plants will also work if you prune them annually. Pick dwarf or semi-dwarf species for your potted Japanese maples. If you’re looking for the easiest option, we recommend Ferti-lome Iron. Be sure to use fresh potting soil during this process.If you have never done root pruning, it's best to consult a nursery professional who can give you some tips and advice. These graceful, slender maple trees (Acer palmatum) thrive in pots as long as you know how to plant them. Choose a dwarf cultivar that matures at less than 10 feet. dissectum). 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