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Techniques - Winter wash

It is important to treat your trees in the dormant Winter months especially deciduous varieties as it is impossible to do some of these treatments when the leaves start to open.

One method is to carry out a winter wash to deciduous varieties during January. The best way to do this is to use a spray of lime sulphur.

A large bottle of lime sulpher
20mls of lime sulper in a measure
Measure topped up with tap water

Lime Sulphur is usually sold in small bottles for treating jin and shari. When you require more for treating the whole tree then it can be purchased in 500ml bottles as shown above, and this is much cheaper. The mix for deciduous trees is usually 20:1 which is 20ml lime sulphur then made up to 400ml with tap water.
In the photo above a 100ml glass measuring cylinder is being used. This will be poured into the sprayer, and then another 300mls tap water added then poured in. You could use a 250ml measuring cylinder if available, but using the smaller one does help wash out any lime sulphur left in the measuring cylinder.



Photo of a 2 litre hand sprayer

Any type of pressure sprayer can be used but a 2 litre hand sprayer like the one shown is quite a good size for a normal garden collection of bonsai.

After spraying the tree then water should be sprayed over the soil to dilute / wash any over-spray. The pot should also be washed because if any of the diluted lime sulphur dries on the pot then it will leave a white residue mark for quite some time.

It will be seen in the photos below that a plastic sheet has been laid out on the ground, and this is a good idea as any lime sulphur drips can easily be wiped off, and it will not stain the paving.

Spraying a tree with lime sulpher
Spraying the other side of the tree
When spraying the tree then care must be taken to see that the spray does not go on the soil and for this reason it is a good idea to tip the tree to 90 degrees as shown in these photos. The tree is sprayed in this position, and then turned 180 degrees as shown in the second photo.
Note. The lime sulphur is also very good at killing any mildew/fungus like you get on Hawthorns etc.
Click on any image for a larger image.
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