I understand that once a tree/shrub has reached maturity, flower buds are apical buds that have morphed from vegetative ones. Yet, not every apical bud morphs into being a flower bud and that fraction that do seems to vary – why?
I’d like to know how I can maximize the flower buds on my flowering trees, rhododendrons, and the like. Conversely, I’d like to know how to suppress flower buds forming. In bonsai practice, for example, it is believed that flower buds ‘waste energy’ that could otherwise go into vegetative growth. Once the bonsai is developed, however, flowers are highly prized.
What are the factors that anyone might control to turn on/off formation of flower buds?