Some Fresh Air… in the Soil

Bonsai Iterate

What do you do when you get a tree that is in desperate need of repotting, but it’s not repotting season? I believe there are a number of good answers to this question, and the various approaches these answers represent may each be suited to a different situation.

I recently became the new caretaker of a white pine that had not been repotted in over a decade. It is planted in what appears to be potting soil or a similarly organic soil. The soil is decomposed, and stays very wet between watering. I applied a simple operation in an attempt to get some fresh air down into this soil until I can repot it in the spring.

First, I cleaned off the soil surface removing damp moss and other debris. A small part of me hoped clearing away some of the decomposed soil might reveal a more granular soil below…

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