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"And the LORD God made ... trees that were pleasing to the eye ..." Gen. 2:9, New International Version.

"Bonsai isn't just something I do; it's part of what I am." Remark to my wife and daughter.

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Enjoying Spring Candles

     Like many people, I greatly enjoy the look of new spring growth when it starts to emerge. I'm sure I appreciate it more than I would otherwise because, even after 40-some years in this climate, it still looks a bit exotic to me. A season characterized by fresh new growth all over the place just doesn't happen in the tropics.

This morning I became intrigued by the subtle differences in appearance of the candles of different species of pine. Here are a few pictures.

Ponderosa, Pinus ponderosa. This tree is a yamadori still recovering from collection a little over a year ago;
thus the short candles.
Pinus ponderosa. Close-up of the terminal candle above.
Also Pinus ponderosa, but a different tree. This one has been its growing box
for a few years, so its candles are longer.
Japanese black pine, Pinus thunbergii. This tree suffered some heat stress last summer, which caused
the damage to some needles. It's recovering nicely now.
Austrian pine, Pinus nigra. Also called European black pine.
Scots pine, Pinus sylvestris. This tree also suffered some heat stress last summer but is recovering.
And a surprise at the end of a branch on the ponderosa in the third picture: pollen cones developing at the base of a lengthening candle!

Pinus ponderosa, pollen cones. I'm not going to remove them, lest I damage the candle around which they cluster. 
:-)  :-)  :-)

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