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Bonsai Care

Bonsai Care, Bonsai General Info, Bonsai Tree Care Basics

How Long Do Bonsai Trees Live For?

Most people have asked this question, since bonsai trees are not easy to look after. Some bonsai trees live for 100 years. Furthermore, the oldest bonsai tree is over 1000 years old! Your tree can only leave this long if you provide continuous maintenance and care. These trees live longer compared to similar species in nature. Therefore, this article will inform you how long your bonsai tree can live.

Top 4 Oldest Bonsai

Some of the oldest bonsai worldwide are over 800 years old, which is a result of hard work and a lot of patience. Below are the four oldest bonsai on record:

Japanese White Pine

This bonsai has survived for approximately 400 years. This has been achieved due to generations of patience and hard work by the Yamaki family. It is unique since it managed to survive in Hiroshima during the calamity of an atomic bomb in 1945. Its survival led it to be donated to Penjing and National Bonsai Museum located in Washington.

800-year-old Bonsai at Shunkaen

This is one of the costliest bonsai trees. Moreover, it is a perfect tree that is popular due to its maximum age of 800. Kunio Kobayashi is the bonsai’s primary artist; this artist is famous and has managed to win the prestigious Prime Minister award four times in Japan.

Old juniper Bonsai Tree

This tree is located at Mansei-en, Japan; it has been proven to be 1000 years old. Furthermore, it has maintained its sturdy material; if you want to see it, you can visit the Mansei-en Bonsai Kato family nursery in Japan.

Ficus Bonsai Tree

Ficus Bonsai is one of the oldest trees worldwide, living for more than 1000 years. It is the primary tree displayed at the Italian Bonsai Museum at Crespi.

Bonsai Species that Live the Longest

Any plant has the potential to be a bonsai. Therefore, whenever you select a plant for longevity, it is ideal to choose a variety with sufficient strength and adaptability. This means you can choose from either evergreen or deciduous species. Your basic skills play a vital role when it comes to growing a bonsai tree. For evergreen species, opt for cedar, cypress, Azalea, Fig, Holly, Pomegranate and pine, while for deciduous species, you can select cherry, beech or maple. When you opt for this species, you will get a beautiful bonsai plant with an extended lifespan.

The Importance of Care for Longevity

Did you know that any species of a tree can be shaped to become a bonsai? The answer is yes; you can achieve this perfect shape if you implement discipline as well as excellent skills in your work. You will not have a bonsai tree if you plant your tree in a container and develop with just pruning; it will not result in a bonsai tree. Ensure that you trim and prune each twig, root and branch continuously to achieve a perfect shape of a bonsai tree.

Bonsai trees require proper care and maintenance for them to have a longer lifespan. The environment is an essential key to a healthy bonsai. Different varieties of trees will succeed either indoors or outdoors. It is also vital to note that outdoor species become dormant during the winter.

Outdoor species are likely not to survive if put indoors for a long duration. During the summer season, keep your outdoor bonsai indoors for approximately a week. Preserve your indoor bonsai under the temperature of 50 to 80 degrees. Make sure you do not expose them to extreme cold, as they might die.

Another consideration is the watering of your bonsai tree. This is an essential factor. You should closely monitor your soil moisture to ensure that it receives a sufficient amount of water to grow appropriately. During summer, you will be forced to water it more frequently compared to rainy seasons.

Potting is necessary when it comes to a bonsai’s proper growth. Most bonsai artists usually come up with their own soil mix or opt for a potting mix. On the other hand, there are many varieties of bonsai soil mixes. However, the only variation between potting soil mixes and the bonsai mix is the minimal fertilizer quantity. Fertilizer plays a crucial role in the growth of healthy plants. For proper growth of your bonsai tree, potassium, phosphorus, and nitrogen are necessary.

How to Prune to Extend Bonsai Lifespan

Every plant has a regular cycle for growing; this applies to the bonsai tree too. The stunted appearance of the bonsai tree does not mean it lacks the potential to grow. Therefore, if you prune your bonsai tree appropriately, you will keep it healthy and extend its lifespan. A bonsai tree can respond well to pruning if it is appropriately trimmed. Ideally, you prune developing growth during winter and old-growth in the fall season. For trees such as cedar and pine, use your fingers for pruning through a twisting motion to maintain a natural impression. Prune diseased branches and leaves to maximize your tree’s health. When you are through, make sure that you examine which branches are responding more effectively than others. This will encourage the growth of healthy leaves.

Conclusion

Based on the above information, you are now familiar with how long bonsai trees can live. Therefore, you can choose a species that is likely to have an extended lifespan. I hope this article helped you to understand how long bonsai trees live.

Bonsai Care, Bonsai Species, Flowing Bonsai Trees

How To Care For Crepe Myrtle Bonsai Tree

Being native to the subtropical regions of Australia and Asia, the Crepe Myrtle has beautiful white, pink, and purple flowers. Many bonsai cultivators are captivated by both the flowers and bark of this deciduous tree.

In autumn, the leaves of the Crepe Myrtle turn orange-red and yellow in a beautiful display. Since this tree can endure strenuous weather conditions, it is an excellent choice for beginners in Bonsai. However, taking care of Crepe Myrtle is not as easy as it seems. In this article, we will take an in-depth look at how to care for the Crepe Myrtle bonsai tree.

Where to Position Your Crepe Myrtle Bonsai

It will help if you position your tree in a spot with exposure to full sunlight. The position is essential because the sun helps prevent insect attacks and fungal diseases while encouraging flowering. If you live in a warm climate, you can place your Crepe Myrtle outside all year round. However, ensure that you transfer your Bonsai to a cool place if you live in a temperate climate.

Watering Your Crepe Myrtle Bonsai

Your Crepe Myrtle should never dry out, especially during the growth period. You should water your Bonsai adequately throughout the year. However, reduce watering during the winter period due to dormancy.

One common mistake that beginners in bonsai cultivation make is overwatering. Your Bonsai needs sufficient water; however, overwatering can be fatal. Only water your Crepe Myrtle bonsai when you notice the soil starting to dry up.

Fertilizing Your Crepe Myrtle Bonsai

During the growing season, ensure that you fertilize your Bonsai every two weeks. Understand that liquid fertilizer is best for your Crepe Myrtle bonsai tree. You can add solid organic fertilizer once your Bonsai matures.

Training Your Crepe Myrtle Bonsai

Only prune your Crepe Myrtle bonsai tree at the end of summer. Doing this will encourage the production of buds during the next year. Wiring is vital when it comes to training any bonsai tree. With the Crepe Myrtle, conduct wiring carefully so that you don’t damage the beautiful bark.

Start by wrapping tape or paper around your wire before you start training. You should also remove the wire around the branches in time to avoid any damages. Use guy-wires wherever possible.

Common Crepe Myrtle Diseases and Pests

Aphids can be a huge bother to your Crepe Myrtle bonsai tree. You can wash the insects off your tree with a strong water jet. However, in severe cases, you will need to use a specific insecticide for better results.

Mildew is also a common problem when it comes to the Crepe Myrtle bonsai tree. Get the specific fungicide that you need when dealing with this situation. Understand that your Bonsai could be affected by other pests and diseases as well. Conduct regular checks on your bonsai tree to spot early signs of pests or diseases.

Repotting Your Crepe Myrtle Bonsai

Your Crepe Myrtle needs to be repotted every two to three years to promote healthy growth. Repotting is crucial in ensuring that your Bonsai gets all the nutrients that it needs. With time, your soil mix begins to lose both its nutrients and water retention properties.

Introduce organic fertilizer to your soil mix when carrying out repotting. Your Bonsai needs the right soil mix to promote healthy growth. Be careful during repotting to ensure that you don’t damage the root system of your Bonsai.

Propagating Your Crepe Myrtle Bonsai

Propagating Crepe Myrtle can be done through cuttings or seeds. However, most people prefer cuttings because you get to save up on a lot of time. With seed propagation, it takes a lot of time to get a healthy seedling to turn into Bonsai.

Conclusion

Taking care of the Crepe Myrtle bonsai tree requires a lot of time and patience. However, the result is usually worth the effort. Understand that there is a little bit of a learning curve when it comes to bonsai cultivation. It will, therefore, take you some time and practice before you get that perfect bonsai tree.

Bonsai Care, Bonsai General Info, Bonsai Tree Care Basics

Bonsai Tree Brown Leaves

Over the years, bonsai cultivation has become quite popular, with more beginners venturing into the art every day. Although these miniature trees make excellent indoor decorations, they can be quite challenging to care for. Bonsai trees need the same nutrients and environmental factors as larger trees.

Without proper care, bonsai leaves start to turn brown or wilt. Once you notice brown leaves, you need to pay close attention to your miniature tree. Most of the time, your bonsai tree will die if you don’t get to the bottom of the problem.

There are many reasons why the leaves or stem of your bonsai tree may be turning brown. In the next section, we will take an extensive look at the common reasons why your bonsai may have brown leaves. We will also take you through the options for remedying the situation.

Improper Watering Causing Browning Leaves on Bonsai

To survive, your bonsai needs a specific amount of water. Underwatering will lead to the browning of leaves, and eventually, the trunk will start wilting. Overwatering, on the other hand, will lead to root rot and thus browning of leaves.

bonsai watering

Most beginners make the mistake of overwatering since they are always checking up on their bonsai. Different tree species have different watering needs making it impossible to have a standard watering timetable.

A great example is when you start noticing the trunk part of your bonsai getting soft. This is usually an indication of overwatering, which causes the roots to rot. Reduce the watering frequency and let the soil dry up completely. Then start watering your bonsai only when needed.

Only water your bonsai when you notice the soil starting to dry up. Constant supervision should help you identify the specific water needs of your bonsai.

Insufficient Light Causing Browning Leaves on Bonsai

When bonsai trees are kept indoors, then they are hugely affected by a lack of sunlight. Your miniature tree could either be subtropical, hardy, or tropical. The sturdy tree varieties need a lot of direct sunlight, which means that the leaves will turn brown quite quickly when kept indoors.

The bonsai in the subtropical and tropical category can survive quite well in partial sunlight. As a rule of thumb, your bonsai needs at least six hours of direct sunlight every day. Identify a position in your room that receives several hours of direct sunlight.

Move your bonsai to the identified location and monitor for a few days. The leaves should start regaining their elegant color and shape. 

Diseases and Pests Causing Browning Leaves on Bonsai

When it comes to bonsai, pests and diseases can cause massive problems. Most of the time, pests can go unnoticed for several weeks and months. Your bonsai leaves will, therefore, turn brown before you notice that the entire tree is infested with pests.

Pests such as spider mites and aphids feed on the nutrients in your bonsai’s steam and leaves. Because the nutrients don’t reach their destination, the leaves gradually start turning brown. In such situations, remove all the dead and brown leaves before spraying a light pesticide.

Nutrient Problems Causing Browning Leaves on Bonsai

Your bonsai tree needs proper nutrients to develop and grow. Nutrient deficiency while leading to the browning of leaves quite quickly. Lack of magnesium, iron, and nitrogen are the common reasons why your bonsai leaves may turn brown.

The browning of stems and leaves simultaneously is a common sign of nutrient imbalance. It would help if you used the right fertilizer mixture to ensure that your bonsai gets a sufficient amount of nutrients. Carry out extensive research to figure out the exact nutrient requirement for your bonsai tree.

Fertilizing needs to be done all year round when you have a weak bonsai tree. However, the best times to fertilize a healthy bonsai are usually at the start of spring and end of summer.

Conclusion

The browning of your bonsai’s leaves can be caused by several factors, including watering schedule, nutrient issues, insufficient light, and more. Ensure that you diagnose the problem first before carrying out a remedy. With time, you will grow into a skilled bonsai cultivator that can identify the different issues quickly. The beauty of bonsai cultivation is the fact that you get to experiment and develop your skills.

Bonsai Care, Bonsai General Info, Bonsai Tree Care Basics

How Hard Are Bonsai Trees To Take Care Of?

Taking care of a bonsai tree seems like a lot of work. However, this is not entirely true once you understand the basic guidelines. Bonsai cultivation is a rewarding art form that simply requires you to master a few basics.

How hard are bonsai trees to take care of? This is quite a common question among many individuals who plan on venturing into the bonsai business. In this article, we will take an in-depth look at basic bonsai care guidelines.

The Easiest Bonsai to Care For

Bonsai trees are rather delicate when compared to other trees. Since bonsai trees are miniature versions of the regular trees, you need to handle them with care. The easiest bonsai to care for is the Ficus bonsai.

The Ficus tree can withstand a lot of harsh climates, including lack of sunlight and low humidity. The Ficus bonsai is, therefore, a great option when you are a beginner in bonsai cultivation.

However, don’t just limit yourself to the Ficus bonsai. Other easy bonsai to care for include Jade, Fukien Tea, Sweet Plum, and Hawaiian Umbrella. Pick tree species that can tolerate harsh conditions, because they tend to be more resilient.

The Hardest Bonsai to Care For

The Pine tree bonsai is considered among the hardest bonsai to care for, due to its growth pattern. Cultivating pine bonsai can be quite difficult because they are among the hardest tree species to turn into bonsai.

You will need to carefully study aspects such as growth patterns and appearances before you can successfully turn a pine tree into a bonsai. However, this doesn’t mean that beginners can’t do it. Sometimes all you need is a little determination and patience.

Bonsai Care Guidelines 

There are a few care guidelines that you need to follow when you decide to venture into bonsai cultivation. The most important aspects include fertilization, watering, and positioning. In this section, we will take an extensive look at the basic bonsai care guidelines.

1. Watering Your Bonsai

Watering is undoubtedly one of the most crucial aspects when it comes to bonsai cultivation. Every tree will have different watering needs depending on several factors. Some of these factors include tree size, pot size, tree species, time of year, climate, and soil mix.

However, you should only water your bonsai tree when it needs it. You need to ensure that the soil doesn’t dry out entirely while avoiding overwatering. Too much water will lead to root rot, so you have to be careful.

2. Fertilizing Your Bonsai

During the winter, you need to fertilize your bonsai tree quite regularly. Since your bonsai is placed in a small pot, it isn’t able to spread its roots in search of nutrients during the winter. Ensure that you fertilize your tree regularly to replenish the nutrient content in your soil.

3. Repotting Your Bonsai

Regular repotting is vital since you don’t want to starve your bonsai to death. To avoid making your tree pot-bound, you have to repot it every two to three years. Repotting is beneficial to your bonsai since the practice ensures that your tree always has sufficient nutrients. Bonsai trees, just like regular trees, need nutrients for growth.

4. Bonsai Soil

You must use the right bonsai soil mixture for your tree. Soil ensures that your bonsai has plenty of nutrients throughout the year. The soil has to drain appropriately while providing sufficient aeration and water retention. You could always purchase ready-made bonsai mix from the local stores. However, learning to create your soil mixture will save you a lot of money.

5. Location of Bonsai

It would help if you found a suitable position for your bonsai tree. Start by considering whether your bonsai is indoors or outdoors. You can then determine the best location for your bonsai to thrive. With indoor bonsai, you might have to get artificial lights, especially during winter.

Conclusion

Taking care of bonsai is not a difficult task once you get the basics right. Follow the above care guidelines to help you on your journey in bonsai cultivation. It might seem difficult at first, but you will find it easier as time goes by.

Bonsai Care, Bonsai General Info, Bonsai Species, Bonsai Tree Care Basics, Indoor Bonsai Trees

Easiest Bonsai Tree To Care For

Bonsai care includes meeting specific needs that common plants do not have. For example, did you know that most bonsai trees are bred to be outdoor plants like their full-size counterparts? If you bring bonsai in the sun indoors, be prepared to give it about 14 hours a day of fluorescent light. However, some bonsai plants don’t need a lot of light, and these types can be perfect if you need to do bonsai care indoors. This article offers a list of the easiest bonsai trees for beginners to care for.

Ficus Bonsai

Ficus is one of the most popular types of indoor bonsai. There are over 800 varieties of ficus, but two specific kinds make good beginner bonsai trees. Ficus neriifolia is a willow-leaved fig known for its delusional leaves, hard root propagation, and twig shoots. Ficus benjamina is a rapidly evolving evergreen tree with rich foliage and roots. It can be best formed in a formal or informal straightening, or in the style of a weeping fig tree. It heals quickly and does not easily recover from massive pruning wounds, so it is better to plant these trees from smaller trees rather than taking cuttings from larger trees.

Ficus bonsai is famous for the milky sap that extends from slices or wounds. Some can also produce small flowers; however, these can only be inoculated by a specialized trace. These bonsai can have aerial roots, but to thrive in this way, they must be placed in approximately 100% humidity.

Chinese Elm Bonsai

Chinese elms are lovely indoor trees that are among the easiest trees for bonsai beginners. Their fast growth, small leaves, wooden stumps, and short knots make it very easy for beginners to grow a healthy and attractive bonsai, even inside the home or office. The Chinese elm is more tolerant of overwatering and underwatering than most types of bonsai. It responds well to cable training or can be prepared with directional pruning. It can grow in good or harsh soil, as long as you don’t let it sit in water or dry out completely. It is easy to grow from cuttings. If you have grown a whole Chinese elm in your neighborhood, you can germinate a bonsai productively from new seeds.

Japanese Maple Bonsai

It has particularly sensitive leaves and can easily burn due to sun exposure. Therefore, it would be good to expose it to moderate sunlight and shade it from exposure during midday and summer. Autumn and spring are good times for sun exposure because sunlight is mild, but winter should be a time of full protection from wind and cold. The Japanese maple bonsai is generally formed through careful and discriminating pruning. 

It is advisable to avoid pruning in the spring to avoid damaging the plant. You can schedule leaf pruning in mid-summer. The roots and branches should be trimmed in the fall. One rule to remember is that you don’t have to remove all the leaves if you are replanting the Japanese maple bonsai. Check the wounds after pruning and be sure to monitor all of them.

Jade Bonsai

This tree likes to be kept indoors at a warm temperature so it can get a lot of natural sunlight; however, jade can also withstand low light intensity. The jade bonsai is a very popular houseplant due to the variety of places that can be kept indoors. Jade should be repotted every two years in a bigger pot. Be sure to trim a third of the root system to avoid restricting the root every time you repot. When repotting, you must use new soil and peat dung. You can trim the leaves at any time of the year, but don’t cut them all at once. 

If you prune your jade bonsai, the leaves will still be small. Pruning new leaves will stimulate new growth toward the bottom of the tree. Do not prune or trim the bonsai repeatedly within one month to avoid excessive shock. When shaping a jade tree, you should use aluminum wire to avoid bark scars. Jade bonsai substructures are stiffer compared to other bonsai trees, so the branches can separate if they bend back immediately.

Hawaiian Umbrella Bonsai

This tree contains thick leaves that form a green crown. In spring it blooms with red roses in a beautiful display of colours. This bonsai is strong and adaptable, and therefore easy to maintain. You can grow the Hawaiian umbrella bonsai from cuttings or seeds. When starting a plant, you must provide it with full sunlight to grow thick, dense foliage. Once this is done, you can move it inside to a window or light spot. You may find that the tree tends to drop leaves after moving inside; don’t worry, as this is just a way to get used to the new environment. 

Water is also essential, and your tree should be sprayed or watered every other day. Never let the soil dry up, as this can have harmful effects on plant health. Also do not overwater it! The soil should be soaked and allowed to drain. If you see the leaves turn black, this indicates that you are watering a lot; if tips appear, you are not watering enough.

Conclusion

Bonsai trees can last a long time if cared for properly. Many people don’t stop at a single tree, and you can collect and grow many different varieties from your mini garden. There are many groups dedicated to this hobby where you can share your experience and learn from others.

Bonsai Care, Bonsai Species, Indoor Bonsai Trees

Bald Cypress Bonsai Pruning

Bald Cypress trees tend to grow in wet and swampy soils along riverbanks and flood plains in the wild. Some specimens of bald cypress have been reported to be as old as 1000 years. Despite the fact that these trees love an ample supply of water, they can still grow as far north as southern Canada, New York, and Minnesota. Bald cypress trees make one of the best bonsai trees. As a bonsai owner, you should understand how vital it is to take care of your miniature plant; thus, in this article, we will discuss the bald cypress bonsai pruning.

The Importance of Pruning Bald Cypress Bonsai

Pruning a bald cypress bonsai helps to create a better and stronger tree; however, excess pruning is highly destructive to your cypress bonsai. For perfect pruning, ensure that you cut the back of your bald cypress bonsai at the right time and in the right way.

To rejuvenate a bald cypress bonsai means to trim it; however, it should be done with utmost care. You will have to keep its roots moist as possible; therefore, prune and trim your cuts at a certain angle that will encourage water to run off stumps. Usually, the goal for pruning a bald cypress bonsai should be yearly thinning instead of major thinning, which tends to take place less frequently.

When to Prune Bald Cypress Bonsai

It is highly advisable to let the trunk of your bald cypress bonsai develop well before pruning it; this will prevent a scraggly look. In the wild, bald cypress tends to grow much faster in the ground in warm climates, since it is often found in swampy areas.

When pruning your bald cypress bonsai, you will need to consider a style that will best suit your bonsai. Most bonsai growers have noticed some success in growing their bonsai in several ways, including formal upright, groups, informal upright, twin trunk, slanting, and literati. However, formal upright is considered the best shape, since bald cypress tends to grow in this manner while in the wild.

Bald cypresses are fast-growing trees; as a result, they have to be watched closely. If you fail to keep a close eye on your tree, the wires can potentially damage it significantly. In order to prevent this from happening, you should consider tying down your branches with twine wire. For a better result, you might consider making a slight incision on a larger branch. By doing so, you will enable the tree to pull its branches down, and its wound will heal within a short period.

How to Prune Bald Cypress Bonsai

In order for you to get a good knee on your bonsai, you should grow your bald cypress in wet and swampy soil; you can achieve this by using an undrained deep swampy bonsai pot. You will then allow your tree to grow and develop a thick trunk before cutting its back. This is because bald cypress tends to grow very fast, and wiring tends to damage its back when not watched closely.

New shoots need to be shortened when they start producing lateral growth. When you prune them too early, they will die during the autumn season. It is advisable to prune the branches during autumn or early spring season. Furthermore, bald cypress often produces lots of new buds in its trunk, forks and branches. The buds that are not useful when designing your bonsai need to be removed in its early stage. On the other hand, young branches and twigs can be wired and shaped, since when they age, they become stiff and brittle. To lower the branches, you should use guy wires for the best result.

Conclusion

Pruning is a vital technique used in growing bonsai trees, and the bald cypress bonsai is no different. To have a better result when growing and cultivating your bald cypress bonsai, understanding the pruning technique becomes vital. As we conclude, we hope that this article has been of great assistance when it comes to bald cypress bonsai pruning.

Bonsai Care, Bonsai General Info, Bonsai Tree Care Basics

Bonsai Grafting

Many bonsai cultivators carry out grafting because they get to combine the strengths of different plants into a single plant. However, grafting can be rather difficult and is considered somewhat experimental. One of the best parts of bonsai cultivation is the fact that you have a lot of room to try out new things.

In this article, we will take an in-depth look at bonsai grafting to help you get started. We need to start by taking a look at some of the reasons why you might need to use grafting techniques.

Purposes of Grafting Bonsai Trees

In bonsai cultivation, grafting is used for various reasons, including the following: to cultivate a new tree with different characteristics, to add a branch, or to add roots. Whatever your reason for bonsai grafting, we have you covered.

Before we take a detailed look at bonsai grafting, you should understand that the entire process is somewhat tricky. It is, therefore, vital that you start with inexpensive material so that you can gain a little bit of experience. It might take awhile before you get the perfect bonsai tree, but you will get there with a little bit of patience.

Grafting a Bonsai Tree

The simple fact is that grafting will only work when the tree and graft belong to the same tree species. However, junipers and pines are an exception since they blend quite well despite belonging to different plant species.

There are three techniques usually used for bonsai grafting: approach grafting, scion grafting, and thread grafting. Let us take a closer look at the three methods that you could use for your bonsai grafting.

Grafting Bonsai Using Scion Grafting

In scion grafting, you need to remove a small branch or shoot from a parent plant, then insert it into the recipient plant. Scion grafting is applicable in broadleaf and deciduous trees, including pines. It is a great technique when you need to replace foliage or add branches to your bonsai.

However, you need to ensure that both the receiving plant and donor plant are in peak condition. You should fertilize the two plants before you carry out scion grafting.

1. Identify the terminal shoot that you need from the donor plant first. Cut off the branch or stem and remove any foliage at its base.

2. Use a sterile knife to make two cuts at the base of the scion that you just cut. Use alcohol to sterilize your sharp blade during this step.  The first cut needs to be long, while the shorter cut needs to be short.

3. Identify where you need to graft your scion and use a grafting knife to cut. The cut needs to be long enough to fit the bottom end of your scion. Then slowly insert your scion into the created flap.

4. Use grafting tape to attach your scion to the receiving plant. Be careful during this step because you don’t want to crush the foliage by pulling the tape too tight.

5. The shoots should start pushing the end of your grafting tape once the graft takes hold. The first growing season will tell you whether you were successful or not.

Grafting Bonsai Using Approach Grafting

In the case of approach grafting, you attach the entire donor plant, including its roots, to your receiving plant. You need a whole donor plant to carry out approach grafting because it aims to change foliage or add branches.

1. You should start cultivating your donor plant years before you carry out the grafting process. The attachment could be done on either a branch or on the trunk.

2. Use a machine to prepare a Die Grinder or Dremel that is slightly smaller than your donor whip in diameter. Slide your whip into the created groove while ensuring that the two cambiums align perfectly.

3. Use a piece of wire to attach your whip to the recipient plant. You can then proceed to attach pre-stretched grafting tape.

Grafting Bonsai Using Thread Grafting

Thread grafting is usually performed when the deciduous plant is dormant, and all the buds have not started swelling.

1. Check the size of the graft branch to help you determine the bit size that you need. Insert the bit using a drill through the trunk. It needs to go through one side and exit through the other for better results. The hole should, therefore, be straight and clean.

2. Use an aluminum wire to ensure that you bend the thread graft accordingly. You need to exercise a lot of caution during this step because you might end up damaging the thread graft.

3. Leave the graft untouched for the entire season. You can then remove the cut paste the following spring and check on the progress.

Conclusion

Bonsai grafting is quite experimental, and you will experience numerous setbacks. However, with a lot of practice, you will get it right. Ensure that you exercise precision during grafting to get you the desired results.

Bonsai Care, Bonsai General Info, Bonsai Tree Care Basics

Bonsai Cutting/Cloning

One of the most inexpensive and effective ways of propagating new trees is from cuttings. Bonsai growers love using cuttings because it reduces the amount of time needed to grow your tree. It takes about a year to get a seedling when you decide to cultivate a bonsai from seeds.

Many bonsai cultivators also use cutting since you get to pick the characteristics that you need. In this article, we will take an in-depth look at bonsai cutting, including when to grow from cuttings, how to harvest cuttings, and growing bonsai cuttings.

When to Grow Bonsai from Cuttings

Summer and spring are the best times to plant cuttings. However, some hardwood trees can be cut off and prepared after the growth season. Late summer is an ideal time when dealing with numerous types of trees.

Generally, a cutting is a piece of stem or branch that is cut from an existing plant and stuck into a growing medium. Now that you understand when to grow from cuttings, you need to understand the benefits of growing from cuttings.

Benefits of Using Cuttings to Grow Bonsai

When you use cuttings, the roots usually emerge from the same level and move outwards evenly. You, therefore, get a massive advantage since you get to have great surface roots. The rooting system is essential when it comes to bonsai cultivation.

Your bonsai will have identical characteristics to the ‘mother plant’ where you obtained the cutting. You, therefore, get to choose the kind of features that you need.

Some plants take years to flower when they are cultivated from the seed. In such cases, however, getting cuttings from a flowering specimen will ensure that your bonsai begins flowering almost immediately.

Using cuttings is budget-friendly since you only need to get a medium and rooting hormone. On the other hand, growing from seeds can be rather expensive since you need pots and tools.

How to Harvest Bonsai Cuttings

Harvesting bonsai cuttings is not as difficult as it sounds. It will help if you start by identifying the plant that you want for whatever reason. If, for example, you want a hardwood cutting during autumn, then you need to begin by removing the leaves.

Proceed to cut the selected twig or branch close to the buds in sections of about 12 cm in length. Use a sharp scissor to get you a clean cut that won’t damage the cambium tissues. Place your cuttings in water and keep them moist during the entire process.

Growing Bonsai Cuttings

Step 1: Apply a coarse layer like grit or lava rock

In your pot, pour a layer of draining substrates such as grit or lava rock. Doing this will ensure that your bonsai has a proper drainage system, which is essential in root development.

Step 2: Add bonsai soil

You can then proceed to add bonsai soil to your planting pot. Do not fill up your container with bonsai soil, but rather leave a little bit of space at the top.

Step 3: Dip your cutting in rooting hormone

Take your cutting and dip it in a rooting hormone. You could either use a powder or liquid rooting hormone, depending on your preference.

Step 4: Planting

Push a stick into your already prepared medium to create a hole. You can then proceed to insert your cutting into the hole. Mold the potting medium around your cutting. Merely shoving the cutting into your prepared soil is not ideal, since you may end up removing most of the rooting hormone.

Step 5: Watering

You need to water the cutting frequently, keeping the medium moist. Soon enough, you will notice new leaves emerging. The new roots cannot withstand dryness, making watering essential.

Conclusion

Using cutting to cultivate bonsai ensures that you get all the characteristics that you need. However, do not introduce your cutting to the medium immediately after watering. The water may wash away most of the rooting hormone, which is not ideal. Proper drainage is also essential because you don’t want your roots to start rotting before your plant starts emerging. Finally, you should understand that bonsai cultivation requires a lot of patience.

Bonsai Care, Bonsai General Info, Bonsai Tree Care Basics

Are Bonsai Trees Hard To Take Care Of?

When most people think about bonsai growing, they immediately start picturing a lot of hard work. However, contrary to popular belief, taking care of bonsai trees is not as complicated as it seems. All you have to do is follow a few simple bonsai care guidelines.

In this article, we will take an in-depth look at some of the basic bonsai care guidelines. We will also walk you through the easiest and hardest bonsai to care for. Let’s get started on your fantastic journey in bonsai cultivation!

The Easiest Bonsai To Care For

Although several trees make good bonsai for beginners, the easiest to care for is the Ficus bonsai. This is because Ficus can withstand a lot, including low humidity and lack of sufficient sunlight.

Most beginners in bonsai cultivation usually start with indoor bonsai. Most plant species do not do well indoors, due to a lack of sufficient sunlight. However, Ficus bonsai is quite tolerant when exposed to harsh conditions.

Other easy-to-care-for bonsai include Carmona (Fukien Tea), Crassula (Jade), Sageretia (Sweet Plum), and Schefflera Arboricola (Hawaiian Umbrella). However, these bonsai become dormant during winter and growth resumes at the start of spring.

The Hardest Bonsai to Care For

Although quite popular, pine trees are among the hardest bonsai to care for due to their growth pattern. What makes pine bonsai quite challenging to cultivate is that they are quite hard to turn into bonsai.

You, therefore, need to study the appearance and growth pattern of your pine bonsai carefully. Turning pine into bonsai can be rather tricky, especially when you are a beginner.

Bonsai Care Guidelines

Taking care of bonsai can be rather simple once you understand the basic guidelines. Below are some specific bonsai care guidelines to help you get started on your transformative journey.

1. Light for Your Bonsai

You must provide proper lighting for your bonsai. Bonsai trees are similar to regular trees that require sufficient lighting.  The low intensity of light indoors might not be adequate for your bonsai tree, and you might need artificial bonsai lighting.

Outdoor lighting is best for the growth of bonsai trees. Only keep your bonsai indoors when you don’t have sufficient room outdoors. Generally, your bonsai tree needs about 8 hours of light per day.

2. Watering and Fertilizing Your Bonsai

bonsai watering

Only water your bonsai when necessary. You mustn’t underwater or overwater your bonsai tree. Although many people often give you a watering timetable, each tree is different.

You have to carefully observe your bonsai to determine the amount of water it needs and frequency. Understand that overwatering might lead to root rot, which is quite difficult to remedy. Underwatering, on the other hand, will cause your tree to dry up and die.

Fertilization is vital in the development of your bonsai tree. Your bonsai needs just as much fertilizer as a regular tree does. Weak bonsai, however, need to be fertilized all year round until they regain their form.

3. Temperature for Your Bonsai

Bonsai trees will perform quite well in standard room temperature. It would help if you kept your bonsai at room temperature at all times. Doing this can be rather challenging, especially when you are a beginner.

However, different tree species have different temperature requirements. It would help if you carried out extensive research to determine the optimum temperature for your bonsai. With outdoor bonsai, however, you don’t have to put a lot of thought into the temperature requirement.

Conclusion

Taking care of bonsai is not as difficult as it might seem. All you need is patience and determination, since it takes a lot of time. However, the end result of bonsai cultivation is usually worth the effort. Follow the care guidelines provided above to help you get a healthy bonsai.

Starting bonsai cultivation can be rather challenging, especially when you are a beginner. Choose the right tree species to ensure that you start on the right track. Start with the most natural tree species to care for and slowly move to the harder tree species. With bonsai cultivation, you get to experiment, which means you will learn from your mistakes.

Bonsai Care, Bonsai Species, Bonsai Tree Care Basics, Indoor Bonsai Trees, Outdoor Bonsai Trees

Ficus Ginseng Bonsai Dropping Leaves

Beginners in bonsai cultivation usually start with the Ficus plant species, since they are resistant to many issues. Since this is a naturally sturdy plant variety, most growers get concerned when Ficus trees start dropping leaves.

However, the good news is that there are steps you can take to revive Ficus Ginseng bonsai dropping leaves. Bonsai cultivation is a continual learning process, and you shouldn’t get frustrated.

In this article, we will focus on reviving your Ficus bonsai from losing leaves. You will need to monitor your bonsai closely while following the right steps. Let’s dive right in!

Why Your Ficus Ginseng Bonsai Leaves Are Falling Off

Different factors may cause your Ficus bonsai to start losing leaves by interfering with its natural growth cycle. Your bonsai has unique preferences and needs, since it is a living creature.

You must understand that there is no magic formula to revive your Ficus bonsai that keeps dropping leaves. Each plant is unique, and you will need to take different measures depending on several factors. The good news, however, is that there is a shortcut to handling this problem.

All you need to do is identify the source of the problem. It would help if you learned the top reasons for dropping leaves in Ficus Ginseng to help you determine what your particular problem might be.

Improper Watering of Ficus Ginseng

Improper watering may involve either overwatering or under-watering. Most people tend to overwater their Ficus bonsai without even noticing it. The golden rule is to only water your bonsai when the soil gets slightly dry at about an inch deep.

Beginners in bonsai cultivation are most affected by improper watering, because they don’t realize that plants suffer water stress.  It would be best if you had a proper watering schedule to ensure that your bonsai gets the right amount of water.

Indoor Ficus Ginseng bonsai are usually affected by overwatering when you plant them in poor quality soil. This soil will retain too much water, leading to root rot. Start by reducing the watering frequency and then replant it to better quality soil after your bonsai regains its strength.

However, if your Ficus Ginseng bonsai is suffering from under-watering, then it is probably too late. The leaves dropping is an indication that the roots have died off, and there is little you can do. It would be best if you never forgot to water your Ficus Ginseng bonsai tree.

Poor Lighting of Ficus Ginseng Bonsai

Indoor Ficus Ginseng bonsai are usually affected by poor light access that leads to the loss of leaves. Outdoor Ficus bonsai rarely get affected by poor light since they are generally placed in ideal locations.

To stop your indoor Ficus bonsai from dropping leaves, you need to transfer it to a different location with proper sunlight. You could either place your plant in front of a window or buy indoor lights. Most people have found a way to integrate both options for healthier growth.

Your Ficus Ginseng bonsai tree needs a lot of light for the photosynthesis process. Poor light will lead to the dropping of leaves within a short period.

Pests on the Ficus Ginseng Bonsai

Identifying whether pests are affecting your Ficus bonsai is pretty straightforward. All you need to do is inspect the stem, branches, and leaves. You should be able to spot any invaders almost immediately. Issues like fertilization, watering, and environmental changes can be challenging to identify when compared to pest infestation.

You can use treatment solutions readily available in local stores to get rid of pests. There are also some DIY solutions that you could employ depending on your level of expertise. Ensure that you inspect your Ficus bonsai regularly to identify pests and get rid of them early.

Incorrect Fertilization of the Ficus Ginseng Bonsai

Inaccurate fertilization is usually to blame when you notice a slow but steady loss of leaves. Plants need some balance to grow appropriately. Too little or too many nutrients will usually lead to a problem.

Measure your soil’s PH level to determine whether you need to decrease or increase the amount of fertilizer.

Conclusion

Your Ficus Ginseng bonsai needs a balanced environment with the ideal conditions for proper growth. It would help if you had an appropriate routine of watering, sufficient light, and adequate fertilization to ensure that you get a healthy Ficus bonsai.