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Bonsai Care

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.

Bonsai Care, Bonsai General Info, Bonsai Tree Care Basics

Why Is My Bonsai Turning Yellow?

Bonsai means ‘tray planting.’ It is a form of art that originated in East Asia centuries ago. A bonsai tree is a replica of a full-grown tree as it would be in the wild, but scaled down so as to be grown in the comfort of your household. As with any tree, it requires set conditions to grow and thrive well. Yellowing of bonsai leaves is not an uncommon occurrence, and it is natural for some types of trees to change the color of the leaves. Sometimes it is not natural, however, and it indicates that something is wrong. This could be due to insufficient lighting, too little water, or a mineral deficiency, among other factors. Here are some of the reasons that may cause yellowing on bonsai leaves.

Watering Your Bonsai Incorrectly

Without a doubt, water is the most vital requirement for any plant to grow. Water provides the plant with all the nutrients it needs from the surrounding soil. Not only is it detrimental for a plant to be under-watered, it is also undesirable for it to be over-watered.

  1. Underwatering

When a plant is given too little water, it begins to wilt and dry up. This will be accompanied by yellowing of leaves, as the plant lacks what it needs to grow properly. You will know a plant is under-watered when it shrivels up and has droopy leavesl yellowing of the leaves soon follows. The soil is also parched.

  1. Overwatering

Just like anything else, water should always be administered in moderation. Too much is poison, since it imposes still water inside the pot. This is a harbor of deadly microorganisms that could potentially kill the plant. Still water surrounding the roots may cause them to rot and ultimately kill the plant. You should take note of any presence of mold, as this means rotting has begun.

Providing Your Bonsai With an Insufficient Amount of Light

The other main necessity for any plant to grow is light. Light is so essential that plants growing in light-deprived areas tend to grow toward the light. Like any tree, the bonsai requires a great exposure to sunlight to grow to its full potential. Light provides the plant with the energy to create its food to sustain its life. Also, chlorophyll found in the leaves of the plant gives the leaves its green color. With more sunlight, the plant produces a greater number of chlorophyll cells, which in turn bring about a vibrant green color. When a bonsai is underexposed to light, yellowing of leaves is inevitable and will lead to an unhealthy looking tree.

Type of Bonsai

You also must familiarize yourself with the nature of the tree you are rearing. Evergreen trees can remain green throughout the entire year, given their growing conditions are met. Tropical trees and conifers may be seasonal, hence changing the color of their leaves and dropping them at certain times of the year. This is hardwired into the system of the tree and no amount of care may change this. So before you panic, know the type of tree you have.

Stresses on the Bonsai

A tree is a living thing, and as with any living thing, stresses in the surrounding environment affect the tree’s general health. The plant’s environment may include the atmosphere, the soil, or features of the plant itself. Changing the soil and altering the temperature may adversely affect how a plant grows. The change in color means that the plant has not acclimated to its new surroundings and may take time before it adjusts. Hard pruning is another way you could lead your plant to ruin. When you snip away too many leaves, you limit the amount of sustainability it can generate for itself. This may lead to depleted resources and the yellowing of leaves. Always make sure to prune the tree when and only when it is healthy.

Bonsai Lacking Minerals

All plants require certain minerals to thrive to their maximum potential. This is the same case with a bonsai. When it lacks specific minerals in the soil, its leaves may turn yellow to indicate a deficiency.

Fertilizer is the needed boost required for the plant to grow healthily. It provides the plant with all the necessary nutrients which make the plant thrive. However, excess fertilizer will scorch the plant and cause it to change the color of the leaves. Fertilizer should be approached carefully and knowledgeably.

Type of Bonsai Pot

From the definition of the word bonsai, it is evident that the pot used will affect the tree. The type of pot will not only serve as the habitat of the tree but will also be aesthetically pleasing to all those who see it. A good-looking pot elevates the overall style of a tree and should be carefully considered when growing a bonsai tree. If the pot used cannot let out excess water, you will waterlog the plant and potentially kill it. Also, the roots may grow too big for the pot and require repotting.

Improper Bonsai Placement Causing Browning of Leaves

Some plants do better outdoors than indoors. The intense sunlight, humidity, and wind all work hand-in-hand to aid trees that grow outside. If these plants were to be planted indoors, it would be problematic and cause a struggle for growth. This will be indicated by the leaves turning colors. You should know the type of tree you are growing to know which conditions best suit it. Indoor bonsai trees include Jade and Ficus, while outdoor trees include the Elms and pine.

How to Revive Yellowed Leaves on Bonsai

If your bonsai tree has turned yellow and you are attempting to restore the leaves to their normal state, you should first know that this is not a process that will happen overnight. Patience is key. Keep a close eye on subtle changes and try to combat them as soon as they appear. Troubleshoot and try to find out what the likely cause of the problem is and deal with it.

Give your bonsai just the right amount of water. Do not be tempted to add water in excess as this is detrimental to the plant’s health. Only water the tree if the top of the soil is parched. Add water till it drains out the bottom, and do not add any more till you are certain the soil is dry.

Always expose the tree to enough light to continue to grow healthily. Sunlight helps in building the plant and so positioning of the plant is quite key.

Get to know your tree so you can understand why it sheds leaves. In a matter of weeks, the tree’s leaves are bound to revert back to the green you are used to. 

Make sure the soil you use is well aerated with all necessary minerals. A bonsai tree typically needs phosphorus, nitrogen, and potassium for good growth.

Add fertilizer with care and make sure it is not in excess, as this will only make the problem worse. Research the type of tree and what nutritional supplement it may require for healthy growth.

Keep the tree in fairly stable conditions. Avoid drastic changes in the environment so as not to stress the plant.

You shouldn’t over-prune your tree. Make sure you prune the tree when it is healthy to avoid putting too much strain on the plant.

Growing a bonsai tree is a soothing endeavor and quite rewarding if done right. It requires your constant attention so make sure to take time out of your schedule to look after your plant and prevent yellowing before it gets out of hand.

Bonsai Care, Bonsai Species, Outdoor Bonsai Trees

Juniper Bonsai Tree Turning Brown

The juniper bonsai tree, known to resemble plants of the cypress family, is a popular coniferous shrub. Some of its notable characteristics are its needle-like leaves and its beautiful foliage color, ranging from light green to a bluish dark green. Many consider the juniper bonsai to be one of the most beginner-friendly bonsai trees. However, failure to follow the care fundamentals for the juniper bonsai may cause plants to grow brown leaves, wilt, or even die. So, before looking at the possible remedies for the juniper bonsai tree turning brown, a quick check of the causes of its browning would be essential.

Causes of a Juniper Bonsai Tree Turning Brown

For a juniper bonsai tree to have its leaves brown, something must have gone wrong while caring for the bonsai. What are the most prevalent mistakes while caring for the juniper bonsai tree?

Overwatering Causing Leaves Browning in Juniper Bonsai

Different bonsai trees have different water requirements, with the soil used also playing a part in the amount of water needed. If the soil retains too much water over a long period, you have overwatered the plant. Juniper leaves tend to discolor when the plant is overwatered, with the color turning from green to brown or yellow. Other signs of overwatering include shrinking of the branches, softening of the trunk, and an unhealthy appearance.

Underwatering Causing Leaves Browning in Juniper Bonsai

On the other edge, underwatering may also cause the juniper bonsai leaves to turn brown. Notably, this may be caused by poor watering habits or the use of excessively low water-retentive soil for the plant. Lack of quick intervention in this area may lead the juniper to wither and die. Signs of underwatering include soil hardening, tiny creases on the trunk, and roots sticking out.

Low Light Causing Leaves Browning in Juniper Bonsai

How To Care For a Juniper Bonsai Tree

With the juniper being a tropical tree, it needs lots of exposure to light. For optimal lighting conditions for your juniper bonsai, I recommend considering both the local climate and season of the year.

Now you know what probably made or might make your juniper bonsai leaves turn brown. That doesn’t mean all is lost. There is still hope for the browning juniper to become a healthier green juniper bonsai.

How to Revive Juniper Bonsai from Browning

There are three basic ways to revive your juniper bonsai from browning. They include making corrections related to the mistakes listed above, as well as repotting. Let’s have a look at each procedure.

  1. Correct Watering

Watering your juniper bonsai is the most critical technique to master for the excellent health of the plant. The major rule here is to neither overwater nor underwater the plant. I recommend that you test the moisture conditions by poking a finger in the soil daily. If the soil feels dry, you should water the plant, ensuring you don’t leave the soil waterlogged. Depending on the season, the plant may need anywhere between a day to a week before watering again.

  1. Proper Placement of the Juniper Bonsai

When we talk about proper placement, this means positioning your bonsai to receive adequate sunlight and temperature. Many bonsai trees prefer outdoor weather, since they can obtain at least six hours of sunlight and a warm temperature. While indoors, always have your juniper bonsai in an area where it can receive adequate temperature and sunlight, especially by the window. At times, adjusting the position of the plant may be needed to have it obtain adequate sunlight and temperature.

  1. Repotting

The frequency at which repotting is done depends on the container size of the juniper bonsai. Most of the juniper bonsai trees require repotting anywhere between every year and every two years. Usually done during spring, repotting is the perfect time to check on the overall root health (bacteria presence), trimming them to get rid of some of the old and rotten roots. I recommend that one uses a quality potting compost mixed with pebbles and sand for optimal drainage.

Conclusion

juniper bonsai

Investing time in caring for your bonsai tree is vital for a healthy plant. While the juniper’s major issue is the browning of the leaves, there are several things you can do to prevent or revive your juniper bonsai from browning. With the above tips, your juniper can maintain a green, healthy color, a crucial characteristic for the juniper bonsai’s beauty.

Bonsai Care, Bonsai Species, Outdoor Bonsai Trees

Azalea Bonsai Leaves Turning Brown

Azalea Bonsai Tree

The azalea bonsai tree is an evergreen tree with deep red flowers that remain on the tree for weeks. It is a member of the rhododendron family. There are many species of azalea with different shades of pink or red flowers. However, there are a few species with white flowers as well. Out of all bonsai trees, the azalea is one of the most satisfying. It is popularly known for having a prolific amount of gorgeous flowers when in full bloom. The azalea also adapts well to cultivation and root pruning. 

As with any other plant, improper care of the azalea may lead to complications that will affect the tree. In this article, we will discuss detailed information on reasons why the leaves of the azalea bonsai turn their green color.

Over-watering Causing Azalea Bonsai Leaves to Turn Brown

There is a specific amount of water that is recommended when watering a bonsai azalea. The leaves and roots of rhododendron may rot due to excess watering. This water becomes trapped in the plant leaves, making them turn brown. 

Often, when over-watering is becoming a problem, it is because the bonsai is being watered more than once a day. The tree should only be watered once every day or two, when the soil gets slightly dry.

Under-watering Causing Azalea Bonsai Leaves to Turn Brown

Browning of the leaves of potted azalea may occur as a result of under-watering the plant. Too little water leads to browning of the leaves and a dried, wilted trunk.

Water your Azalea bonsai every day or two when the soil gets slightly dry. Do not wait until the soil completely dries out.

Low Light Causing Azalea Bonsai Leaves to Turn Brown

Azalea bonsai depends on various environmental factors to survive and to stay alive. The tree should be exposed to sunlight. Since the azalea tree is hardy, it needs to be placed outdoors, because its leaves will turn brown if left indoors for an extended period. When potted azalea lacks sunlight, its leaves begin to wilt. For at least part of the day, you should expose the tree to indirect sunlight to prevent the leaves turning brown. However, when the tree is exposed to the sun for too long, it can dry out and cause browning of leaves.

You should place your azalea bonsai in a warm, well-ventilated, and partially shaded area. The tree to be placed in such an environment to enhance the healing process of brown leaves.

Pests and Diseases Causing Azalea Bonsai Leaves to Turn Brown

When pests affect the potted azalea’s leaves, they usually go unnoticed, thus causing the leaves to turn brown. These pests prevent the nutrients from reaching the leaves by feeding off the liquid from stems. They also suck the moisture from the leaves; hence, browning of the leaves occurs, and leaves eventually die. To promote new growth of the leaves, you can spray a light pesticide on the bonsai tree and remove dead or brown leaves. You should also use water to wash away the pests with an insecticidal soap that will prevent the infestation of pests.

Nutrient Problems Causing Azalea Bonsai Leaves to Turn Brown

In order for the potted azalea to grow and develop, it needs proper nutrients. The leaves may turn brown due to nutrient deficiency, such as a lack of magnesium and iron. The potted azalea also needs fertilizers like any other plant. An incomplete energy cycle may occur due to insufficient nutrients, thus affecting the leaf’s color. Notably, excessive use of fertilizers may cause the plant to burn.

How to Revive Azalea Bonsai From Browning Leaves

  1. Trimming the dead spots

To encourage and nurture future growth and development, you can trim away the dead parts of your bonsai tree. It is helpful for survival and revival of the azalea bonsai to trim away any fallen leaves or brown and wilted leaves from the stem.

  1. Treating your potted azalea tree with an organic insecticide

 You can spray your azalea plant with insecticide if you have noticed your potted azalea is infested with any type of pests. To ensure that you buy the right treatment for each parasite, you should identify the symptoms of the plant before choosing the spray. It is essential to lightly spray the bonsai tree’s foliage to ensure that the chemical lightly coats each area.

  1. Checking the moisture levels

It is essential to check the soil’s moisture levels before taking any action. You can stick your fingers 1 to 2 inches into the ground to check the moisture levels. Severe dehydration of the soil may cause the browning of the leaves; thus, it is recommended to water your tree well.

  1. Placement of azalea bonsai in a clean temporary container

You should place your potted azalea in a clean temporary container filled with lukewarm water. The normal pot should be cleaned thoroughly when the plant is still resting. You should prepare a new bonsai mixture of soil that drains well but retains water effectively.

Bonsai Care, Bonsai Species, Outdoor Bonsai Trees

Black Oak Bonsai

Oaks are among the most common trees. Most of them are deciduous; however, some of them are evergreen. Oak trees produce characteristic fruits (acorns). Black Oak bonsai tend to be picky compared to other plants; furthermore, they require greater care than all popular maples and conifer. In this article, we shall be discussing the care of the Black Oak bonsai tree.

How to Take Care of the Black Oak Bonsai

When it comes to taking care of your Black Oak bonsai tree, there are several essential aspects you will need to keep in mind, including:

Where to Position the Black Oak Bonsai

When it comes to positioning your Black Oak bonsai tree, sunlight should be your top priority. A Black Oak bonsai tends to tolerate full sunlight better than other bonsai plants. Therefore, you should consider positioning your Black Oak bonsai in direct full sunlight. Morning sunlight is regarded as the best since it is not overly hot; however, in the heat of the afternoon, you should consider filtering the sunlight or providing full shade to prevent your Oak from drying.

When kept in full shade for an extended period, a Black Oak bonsai will develop abnormally large leaves or dieback. These large leaves are inconsistent with your goals for your bonsai.

When and How to Water the Black Oak Bonsai

It would be best if you watered your Black Oak Bonsai every time its soil runs dry. However, you should avoid constant soil wetness. This means that you should water less during winter, but you should avoid letting the root-ball from drying out completely.

Fertilizing Needs for the Black Oak Bonsai

Virtually every Black Oak bonsai requires supplemental fertilization during the growing season. Since there are no ornamental flowers on the Black Oak, the tree does not need as much nitrogen as a flowering bonsai.

Using a heavy nitrogen fertilizer is desirable for plants that you will be trying to coax in developing heavy trunks. However, Black Oak responds better to a weak solution of a well-balanced fertilizer, which will address top- and root-growing needs. A Black Oak bonsai may produce bonsai-sized acorns, or it may not.

How to Train the Black Oak Bonsai

The Black Oak bonsai, like the pin and live oaks bonsai, tends to respond well to wiring and training. However, when training your Black Oak bonsai, be extra careful not to damage its bark while bending or positioning its branches. When you start on the second year of training, you should consider repotting your bonsai with the utmost care, as well as pruning and grooming the roots. Continue shaping it by bending and wiring its branches until you attain the desired appearance.

Common Pests and Diseases that the Black Oak Bonsai May Get

Black Oak bonsai often suffer from powdery mildew. To take care of this issue, you should consider using 10g baking soda along with 10ml grapeseed oil, a drop of dishwasher detergent, and 1 liter of water. You will spray the mixture repeatedly every seven days.

Less often, bacterial leaf scorch, oak leaf blister, and pine-oak gall rust occur. You should consider looking for a professional gardener who will take care of the situation if it worsens. There are some mites and insects that cause galls, but they do not cause any harm to the Oak tree in most cases. In addition to that, scale, aphids, hookworms, and leaf miners are a bother to Black Oak bonsai. To get rid of these pests, you might consider using a jet of water rather than chemical pesticides. It would be best if you also watched out for caterpillars of the Oak Processionary moth, since they have toxic hair and are very dangerous for humans.

By taking good care of your Black Oak in its early stages, you will be able to grow a perfect bonsai with the utmost ease. Keep in mind the growing conditions, correct watering techniques, and supplemental fertilizer to help your Black Oak Bonsai thrive. The best part is that Black Oak bonsai responds well to wiring and training; this makes it relatively easy to work with. We hope that this article has been of great assistance when it comes to caring for and training your Black Oak bonsai.

Bonsai Care, Bonsai Species, Flowing Bonsai Trees

How to Turn an Apple Tree into a Bonsai

Apple Bonsai Tree 1

It is undeniable that flowers and fruits add to the beauty of the environment. With bonsai gardening, the beauty of an orchard can be brought right in your living room in a miniaturized way! There are several ways to turn an apple tree into a perfect bonsai tree, including apple seeds and apple cuttings. Here, I will offer tips on how to grow an apple bonsai as well as discussing care tips for a healthy bonsai tree.

Growing Apple Bonsai Trees

Great bonsai gardeners go an extra mile of growing their trees instead of buying them. If you need to grow apple bonsai trees, you can use apple seeds or apple cutting. Since apple trees are not self-pollinating, you need at least two apple plants of a different type for your bonsai to bear fruits. Let’s look at both ways to learn how to turn an apple tree into a perfect bonsai tree.

Growing Apple Bonsai through Cuttings

To grow apple bonsai from cuttings, you will have to access healthy apple trees for your cuttings. The apple trees should be of different types, as noted above. When harvesting your cuttings, you should use a sterile cutter; a diagonal cut is preferred while harvesting cuttings. Then, you should place your cuttings in water immediately after harvesting them to prevent air from entering the cuttings’ stems.

Patience is key, since you need to allow the cuttings to develop roots. You may also use grafting techniques to produce good roots. When healthy and thick roots have grown, you can transfer the cuttings into their pots. You should water the cuttings daily to keep the roots moist.

Growing Apple Bonsai from Seeds

On the other hand, one may develop apple bonsai trees from apple seeds. To start this off, you need to collect seeds of different apple trees. Dry the seeds’ outside shells using a dry paper towel. You will need now to cover your dry seeds with a damp paper towel and place them in a sealable plastic bag. Apple seeds grow roots and sprout during winter; hence, you need to simulate seasons in your growing environment. To do so, keep your sealed seeds in the refrigerator for about seventy-five days under temperatures between forty and fifty degrees Fahrenheit. Doing this in winter is recommended for aligning the seed growth with its most preferable season.

When the allotted time has elapsed, remove the seeds from the refrigerator for planting. You will need some neutral pH soil with no fertilizers in which to plant the seeds. I recommend that you do the following after planting the seeds:

Water the seeds immediately to allow the soil to settle quickly around the seeds.

Ensure the soil stays moist.

Place your pot near the window or an environment with temperature matching or above room temperature.

As the seedlings grow over several weeks, water them daily.

We now have growing apple bonsai trees, but that’s not all. For a healthy and beautiful apple bonsai, special care is required. So, what are some common care tips for an apple bonsai?

Caring for Apple Bonsai After Planting

When it comes to caring for the apple bonsai, think of its growing position, watering, fertilizing needs, pruning, and training. The apple bonsai needs to be watered frequently, with water needs rising when the tree begins bearing fruit. Under-watering and over-watering should be avoided, with the soil kept moist and never dry. For optimal growth, the apple tree bonsai require feeding at least twice a month using balanced fertilizers. However, when the tree starts bearing fruit, stop feeding it.

We need to keep the apple plant miniature, so good skills in pruning are essential. Apple trees are best pruned in the spring; use clean pruning shears to keep the apple bonsai miniature. While pruning may be used as a training method, I recommend that you use wiring as the perfect training method. Through wiring, you can shape the apple bonsai in the spring season, before new leaves and buds emerge. You also need to keep your apple bonsai free from common pests and diseases such as mildew and aphids.

As evidenced in the tips above, you don’t need to purchase an apple bonsai. You can grow it on your own! However, developing the apple bonsai tree from seeds or cuttings is not an easy task. Caring for the apple bonsai is a lifelong obligation, but you can use the beautiful tree for decoration in your office, balcony, or living room.

Bonsai Care, Bonsai Species, Indoor Bonsai Trees

Fukien Tea Problems

The Fukien tea bonsai (Ehretia Microphylla, Carmona Microphylla) is an evergreen shrub that is commonly used for indoor or tropical bonsai. The tree is often available at bonsai nurseries, discount stores, and many other online sources. The plant originates from Southern China and is named after the Fujian province. It is excellently suited for the art of bonsai, due to its small leaves. Unlike most indoor bonsai, Fukien tea grows continuously, with no detectable rest period. Some of this tree’s characteristics are shiny, dark green leaves and a reddish-brown trunk. In this article, we will discuss the Fukien tea bonsai and its common issues.

The Problems That May Arise with Fukien Tea Bonsai

The growth of the Fukien bonsai tree can be cut short due to various problems. Some of these problems include discoloration of leaves, fuzzy spots, and swollen barks.

  • Visible spots on the leaves of Fukien tea bonsai

Red, brown, or black spots can appear on the leaves, and these are a sign of fungal infection. You should consider immediate treatment. It is vital to treat the tree with anti-fungal medication and prune the affected leaves.

  • Fuzzy spots on leaves and stems for Fukien tea bonsai

When the leaves and stems are affected by mold, small fuzzy white spots will appear. Low humidity conditions accelerate the growth of molds, causing the plant to deteriorate rapidly. In some cases, the fungi can affect the tree without being noticed until it has completely invaded the leaves and stems. When you are not careful, the small patches of white fuzz can grow to a large spot.

  • Swollen bark for Fukien tea bonsai

Swollen barking commonly occurs when the tree has not healed after trimming correctly. It can also be caused by canker diseases and under-skin diseases too. To prevent the whole plant from being affected, you should cut the infected part of branches. Cut paste can be used to encourage healthy healing.

  • Shrunken branches

Poor nutrition, watering, or diseases can lead to wrinkled branches. The affected limbs should be removed to prevent the entire tree from being changed. For nutrition identification, a soil test should be performed. 

  • Discoloration of leaves and stems

Discoloration of leaves and stems can be caused by infections and nutrients imbalance. The disease causes the leaves to turn brown, dark green, or light green colors. The leaves will dry and finally fall off. The application of fertilizers could help to prevent the branches and stems from shrinking.

Over-Watering and Under-Watering Fukien Tea Bonsai

watering bonsai

It is not always easy to determine if your bonsai is suffering from over- or under-watering. Some of the causes of over-watering are poor drainage, poorly draining soils, and containers. Overwatering makes the roots rot; rotted roots will take up water to the entire tree inefficiently. The symptoms start to appear immediately, including dry and yellow leaves and soft black tips on the leaves. Over-watering also loosens the trunk of the tree in the pot, and it may appear wobbly. It is essential to keep the soil damp and not wet. On the other hand, under-watering means the soil is dry due to a lack of sufficient water. It rapidly causes the leaves of the tree to wilt, dry, and become crispy, and they will eventually fall. 

Fukien Tea Not Receiving Enough Light

Fukien trees can only be kept outside all year in hot climates; this tree is best kept as an indoor plant. It always needs a lot of light, however. Insufficient light can cause the tree to grow slowly, interfering with shaping techniques. After pruning or leaf trimming, the plant will not grow back.  When they do not receive enough light, the leaves will start yellowing, drying, and falling off the tree.

Common Pests in Fukien Tea Bonsai

The tree can be attacked by spider mites, scale, and whiteflies under inadequate conditions. Spraying insecticide and using a stick to push into the soil will help to curb these pests. Light and humidity must also be improved to prevent infestations of pests. Fungal diseases can affect this plant in rare cases.

To sum up, improper care of the Fukien tea bonsai tree makes the plant unhealthy. The problems discussed above remain a threat to the growth of Fukien bonsai, and you should consider immediate treatment of the issues to make your tree thrive.

Bonsai Care, Bonsai General Info, Bonsai Tree Care Basics

How to Save a Bonsai Tree

Taking good care of a bonsai tree is not an easy task. Bonsai trees are prone to various problems that make them susceptible to disease. Hence, bonsai trees need careful handling. Watering a bonsai involves using clean and safe water. Fertilization of bonsai depends on your specific bonsai tree; some trees need regular fertilization in either liquid or powder forms. Pruning is also a critical care practice for bonsai; it should be done with special shears, depending on the age of the bonsai tree. In this article, we will discuss common bonsai problems and how to fix them.

How to Solve Bonsai Problems Related to Watering

  • Yellowing and wilting of trees

The leading cause of dryness, wilting, and yellowing of bonsai leaves is too much watering. Fixing this condition requires proper watering of the tree. You can water the trees only when the soil gets slightly dry. However, do not water bonsai on a routine basis but instead, observe each tree’s soil moisture. Finally, use the correct soil-mixture to plant your bonsai tree, making sure to use a mixture that can retain water for some time. You can also use a pot with good drainage to avoid water accumulation.

  • Discoloration of the stems and leaves

Discoloration in a bonsai tree might be caused by diseases or a lack of nutrients. You can conduct a soil test to check the nutritional imbalance on the plant. It is advisable to use clean, distilled water for watering your trees. Because dirty water contains impurities and toxic salts, it causes nutritional imbalance.

How to Solve Problems Related to Light

Light problems like molds and certain diseases are caused by insufficient light. The best bonsai location is a sunny spot in the window or your garden. Bonsai trees need to receive at least six hours of sunlight in a day. The light also helps to optimize the humidity levels in the bonsai space.

You can improve the humidity of your living room for indoor bonsai trees by installing humidifiers to improve the moisture level. The opening of windows and doors also helps to improve the humidity level.

How to Solve Problems Related to Soil

  •  Shrunken branches

Poor nutrition causes bonsai branches to shrink. A soil test is crucial to detect any nutrient problems. Replace bonsai potting mixture over time to avoid soil-borne diseases.

  •  Root discoloration and rotting

Trimming ensures no disease originates from the root zones. The roots are essential to the tree’s absorption of water and nutrients. Always keep the soil moist to avoid wilting of leaves.

Also, ensure you use well-draining soil to avoid the accumulation of water in the pot, leading to bonsai root rot.

How to Solve Problems Related to Fertilizer

  • Discoloration of leaves

Leaf discoloration is usually a result of nutritional imbalance to the plant. You can analyze your bonsai’s soil to determine which nutrients are available or deficient in the ground. A sick bonsai needs balanced nutrition or fertilizer for better rejuvenation. Therefore, you should understand the needs of your specific bonsai tree to know which fertilizers to use.

Conclusion

Caring for a bonsai tree requires careful examination to know the cause of any apparent problem. Tree care involves various steps and also requires the use of proper tools and equipment for pruning and tree shaping. Observe the tree for any cases of discoloration, leaf and stem spots, presence of insects, yellowing and drying of leaves, or shrunken branches, and fix them properly. The cases might be related to watering, fertilizer, soil, or light and therefore require a proper understanding of bonsai growing.

Other ways of fixing bonsai problems include proper root trimming, repotting a bonsai tree, changing the bonsai to new soil after disease condition treatment, changing the tree’s location gradually, or pruning of diseased branches to minimize the spread. The proper watering of your bonsai is also vital. To achieve adequate water levels, ensure the soil is always moist.