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Indoor Bonsai Trees

Bonsai Care, Bonsai Species, Indoor Bonsai Trees

How To Take Care Of Pine Trees Indoors

One of the most popular bonsai trees is pine. Many people prefer using pine trees as bonsai since they are coniferous and evergreen. The great thing about pine is that you get to shape them however you want.

However, before we start discussing how to take care of pine bonsai indoors, you need to understand a few details. Different pine species are categorized depending on whether they produce one or two growth flushes.

If your pine tree species has two growth flushes, then it can be decandled during early spring. Doing this ensures that your pine will produce a second flush by the start of early summer. However, if your pine produces a single growth flush, then it should not be decandled. You only need to shorten and select candles in such a case.

Positioning Pine Bonsai 

Although pine trees are quite hardy, they need lots of light for proper development. Adequate light will support the healthy growth of your pine. Without proper sunlight, your pine will have more extended needle sizes.

During winter, you may need to install a bonsai lighting system in your home. Since your pine is placed inside a container, it needs to be protected during the winter. Place your pine bonsai next to a large window to ensure that it gets sufficient sunlight.

Watering Your Pine Bonsai

With pine bonsai, you need to ensure that you carry out proper watering. Bonsai pines don’t like an environment with permanent moisture. Having an adequate drainage system will ensure that you don’t over-water your bonsai.

The biggest downside of overwatering is that it will lead to rotting of the roots. One of the most important parts of bonsai cultivation is healthy roots. Rotting roots in pine bonsai can be fatal when not properly handled.

Create a watering schedule to help you keep track of your bonsai’s water needs. Under-watering could also lead to several problems.

Fertilizing Your Pine Bonsai

Healthy pine bonsai need to be fertilized from the start of early spring to the end of autumn. However, weak pine trees have to be fertilized all year round. Only stop fertilizing the weak trees when the temperature drops.

Solid organic fertilizer needs to be applied at 4-week intervals before decandling can be carried out. You will need to stop fertilization once the secondary candle growth starts to harden. Begin the fertilization process in late autumn.

Training Your Pine Bonsai

Training your pine bonsai needs to be done during the early autumn or spring. Using wires for training is pretty straightforward, and you get to shape your pine however you want. Ensure that you conduct training carefully over a set period.

Do not overstrain your pine bonsai during training. Give your pine enough room to recover during the entire process. Training will strain your pine bonsai, which means that you need to be careful. Repotting, on the other side, needs to be done in spring when you notice the buds starting to swell.

Common Pine Bonsai Pests and Diseases

Pines get infected by spider mites, aphids, and caterpillars quite often. Other times, your pine bonsai may be attacked by root rot and fungal diseases. To treat the common pests and diseases that affect pine bonsai, you need to use specific pesticides.

In such situations, seek help from an expert in the field. Pines can deteriorate quickly when exposed to pests and diseases. However, pines tend to be healthy when adequately taken care of.

Conclusion

Pine is, undoubtedly, getting quite popular among many beginners in bonsai cultivators. The beauty of pine bonsai is that you get to create different shapes depending on your desires. However, proper care of your pine bonsai is essential since you are investing a lot of time and effort into the project.

Remember to start by identifying the pine species that you have before carrying out the above practices. Bonsai cultivation requires a lot of patience. It will take a while before you start noticing changes.

Bonsai Care, Bonsai Species, Indoor Bonsai Trees

How to Bonsai an Oak Sapling

Oak trees are not the most popular bonsai species. Although oak trees are abundant in Japan, these majestic trees have not yet gained popularity. This is mainly due to the broad leaves that are not suitable when it comes to the art of miniature tree cultivation.

However, if you are thinking of creating a bonsai from an oak sapling, then you have come to the right place. It isn’t as simple as you might think, and you will need to exercise a lot of care. The good news is that the journey is rewarding, making it worth the time and effort.

Growing An Oak Bonsai from Seed Versus Buying a Grown Tree

Not all oak trees make good bonsai due to the occurrence of broad leaves, as stated earlier on. Growing an oak bonsai from seed can, therefore, be quite tricky, since you might not know whether the tree will make a good bonsai or not.

The advantage of using a grown tree is that you get to choose the characteristics that you want. Your bonsai will have similar characteristics to the donor plant. This ensures that you can look for all the traits that you might need in an oak bonsai.

Growing from seed will require cultivation over an extended period. Yes, you might want to start from scratch, but this needs a lot of patience. Growing from seed will take about three or four years more than buying a grown tree.

How to Grow Oak Bonsai From Seed

Growing an oak bonsai from seed can be rather tricky. You will need to plant several seeds and wait patiently for the seedling to emerge. This will take quite a while, making it impractical in many cases. You will then have to choose a healthy seedling to start designing your oak bonsai.

Using oak sapling is the preferred way, according to several experts. In this article, we will focus on using an oak sapling rather than a seed.

How to Grow Oak Bonsai From a Tree

It would help if you started by choosing a wild sapling that is well-rooted and between 6 inches to 12 feet tall. Pick a sapling with the main leader that can bend appropriately without breaking. Then it would help if you started creating your bonsai soil.

Mix peat moss and perlite in an equal ratio to get you the perfect bonsai growing medium. Proceed to repot your tree into a container using your soil.

Use small pruning shears to prune all the vigorous shoots that emerge on the upper tree level. You could always use scissors when you want to achieve precision. Leave all the fragile shoots in place.

Your oak bonsai should start taking shape as a miniature tree without losing its balance. Ensure that you encourage thin growth at the top and thick growth at the bottom.

Use scissors to clip all the leaves apart from those at the end of your branches. This will encourage your tree to bud out close to the trunk. Use aluminum wire to train the leader and branch while leaving a space of about a quarter-inch between the coils. You can then proceed to bend your oak bonsai to whatever shape you need. However, exercise a lot of caution because you don’t want to damage the bark while training.

Prune your branches during the late fall when your bonsai goes into dormancy. Always cut the end nodes on higher branches to encourage growth at the bottom.

Caring for Your Oak After Planting  

Caring for your oak after planting is a simple task once you understand the basic guidelines. Fertilization, watering, and positioning are vital when caring for your oak tree. You need to ensure that you provide adequate water and fertilizer to your bonsai.

Proper position is also vital, especially when you plan on growing your bonsai indoors. You need to ensure that your oak bonsai gets sufficient sunlight and humidity throughout the year.

Conclusion

To effectively bonsai an oak sapling, you need a lot of patience. Proper care is equally important, especially during the early stages. This extensive guide should help you on your transformative journey in bonsai cultivation.

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 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 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 Species, Indoor Bonsai Trees

Best Soil Mix For Fukien Tea Bonsai

The Fukien tea bonsai is one of the most challenging tree varieties to sculpt. This tree presents many unique characteristics that can turn into a nightmare for beginners in bonsai cultivation. Although you need to put a lot of effort in cultivation, pruning, and maintenance, the end result is usually graceful and beautiful.

One of the things you will have to consider when it comes to Fukien tea bonsai is the soil quality. Rotting roots are a common problem associated with Fukien tea bonsai. Soggy, compacted soil will pose a huge problem, and you might never get the desired results.

Generally, Fukien tea trees prefer moist to slightly dry soil. If you want the very best results, you will need a quality soil mix for your Fukien tea bonsai. In this article, we will look at the importance of quality soil, the preferred soil mix, and when you should repot your Fukien tea bonsai.

Importance of Quality Soil in Fukien Tea Bonsai

Inferior soil will lead to no or slow growth of your Fukien tea bonsai. Your bonsai will undergo a lot of trauma and stress during pruning and shaping. Poor quality soil won’t provide the nutrition needed to bounce back from the cultivation process involved.

As stated earlier, soil without the proper drainage will also lead to the rotting of roots. The Fukien tea bonsai is particularly affected by this. Recovering rotting roots can be a complicated procedure, especially when you are a beginner. Most people usually quit and start again with a different tree, which can be devastating.

When you use low-quality soil, you will end up struggling with the speed and growth patterns of your Fukien tea bonsai. You mustn’t procure your soil from gardening stores, but instead, try a quality soil mix.

Fukien Tea’s Preferred Soil Mix

Now that you understand the importance of quality soil in cultivating Fukien tea bonsai, you need to create the perfect soil mix. You need a freely draining soil mix that consists of half inorganic and half organic soil components.

However, your Fukien tea bonsai could grow just as comfortably in a well-draining organic mix or 100% inorganic mix. You have to ensure that the soil never gets compacted, or you will end up with rotting roots.

Lastly, you need to add fertilizer weekly. Before you fertilize the soil, ensure that you water the tree well. The fertilizer should also be mixed at half the recommended dilution for the best results. Do not fertilize a sick, transplanted, or purchased Fukien tea tree.

Repotting Your Fukien Tea Bonsai

Repotting a Fukien tea bonsai should be done periodically when you notice that the root system has filled the current pot. One of the key reasons why you need to repot at this time is to ensure that your bonsai gets a fresh potting mix.

Repotting will also encourage the growth of a compact root system, which is essential in bonsai cultivation. Therefore, you need to examine your bonsai’s root system often to help you figure out when to repot.

No two trees are identical when it comes to growth patterns. When to repot will depend on the rate that your tree is growing. There is no predetermined schedule of when to repot, and you need to observe your Fukien tea bonsai carefully.

The best time to repot your Fukien tea bonsai would be around midsummer, when it is warm. It would help if you started by removing the bottom and outer quarter of the root mass.  You could then either return the bonsai tree to its original pot or transfer to a new pot.

Ensure that you add sufficient soil to make up the difference created when you trim away the roots. Your plant needs to be raised to its original position after you are done repotting. Water your tree when you are done to ensure that your bonsai tree remains healthy.

Fukien tea bonsai is a fantastic tree variety that creates beautiful shapes. However, there is a lot of work needed, starting with the soil. You want a healthy rooting system that can promote speedy growth, and the right soil is your answer.

Bonsai Care, Bonsai Species, Indoor Bonsai Trees

How to Care For Jack Pine Bonsai

Jack pine is among the best tree varieties for fantastic bonsai art. It is a hardy tree that is suitable for both bonsai professionals and beginners. Many people prefer using Jack pine for bonsai cultivation due to its resilience. This tree can survive in adverse conditions, such as rocky and sandy soils.

When left in the wild, Jack pines have a lifespan of around 200 years, with sizes ranging from three to seventy-five feet. They feature lateral roots that enclose the upper soil layers, which gives them more stability.

Because there are more than 75 Jack pine species, you have several options for your bonsai cultivation. These trees have a beautiful bark and robust rooting system that makes them perfect for bonsai. They are also easy to care for.

You don’t need any experience or expertise in bonsai cultivation when dealing with Jack pines. In this article, I will guide you through how to care for your Jack pine bonsai.

How to Care for the Jack Pine Bonsai

One of the basic things that you need to consider when growing bonsai is the soil. For Jack pines, you will need soil that has a slightly acidic or neutral PH. Choose a high-quality conifer mix consisting of pumice, lava rock, and pumice in equal parts. It should also include small amounts of de-composted charcoal and granite.

However, taking care of your Jack pine bonsai is not just about the soil. There are other aspects that you must tweak to get a healthy and beautiful Jack pine bonsai. Let us take a look at some practices which will help you get that beautiful bonsai.

Where to Position the Jack Pine Bonsai

Jack pine trees thrive in a natural environment, due to the abundance of light. It is paramount that you position your Jack pine bonsai in a well-lit spot. You must avoid shady spots, since these will lead to stunted development.

Pick a spot in your house or room that gets sufficient sunlight during the day. You don’t want to move your bonsai around in search of the sun, since constantly shifting the position of your Jack pine bonsai will harm its development.

When and How to Water the Jack Pine Bonsai

Although Jack pines are drought-resistant, proper watering is crucial, especially in the early stages. Ensure that you provide enough water for your tree’s development. Be careful that you don’t add too much water.

The water should never go above the soil level when cultivating Jack pine bonsai. Let the soil dry out thoroughly before re-watering your bonsai.

Fertilizing the Jack Pine Bonsai

To get a healthy Jack pine bonsai tree, you need slightly acidic fertilizers. Fertilize your Jack pine bonsai during the autumn for the best results. Restrain yourself from adding any fertilizer during the winter, unless it is extremely necessary.

Patience is crucial when it comes to Jack pine bonsai, because they take a lot of time to grow. Re-potting should, therefore, be done after five years of continuous fertilization cycle.

How to Train the Jack Pine Bonsai

You should only prune and train your Jack pine bonsai when you notice vigorous growth. Do not carry out any training practices when there are no new growth developments. You don’t want to shock your bonsai and stunt its growth.

Training should be done only once a year for the best results. Remember, patience is critical when dealing with Jack pine bonsai.

Common Pests and Diseases that the Jack Pine May Get

The common pests that may attack your Jack pine bonsai include aphids, weevils, and borers. You have to carry out a regular check to ensure that you spot these pests on time. With pests, early detection ensures that they don’t cause any irreversible damage.

Although Jack pine bonsai are easy to grow, you should carry out the practices highlighted above. Ensure that you let your tree dictate the form it wants to take rather than dictating extreme training practices. The beauty with Jack pine bonsai cultivation is that you can learn and grow at the same time.

Bonsai Care, Bonsai Species, Indoor Bonsai Trees, Outdoor Bonsai Trees

How to Care For African Boxwood Bonsai

Boxwood is a very hardy evergreen plant that proliferates well. It is popularly known due to its significant characteristics, thus making an excellent tree to be used as bonsai. The boxwood species includes over 70 varieties of trees. Japanese boxwood (Buxus Microphylla) and common boxwood (Buxus Sempervirens) are the most common boxwood species. Boxwood can be shaped into different designs and is often used as an ornamental shrub. The boxwood often grows with twisted trunks and branches in its natural habitat. These trees have greenish-yellow flowers that usually attract bees. There are several care guidelines that will help them to flourish. In this article, we will discuss how to care for potted boxwood.

Where to Position African Boxwood

During the summer, Japanese boxwood should be placed in a house with high light levels or kept outside with either complete or limited sunlight. A tree should be placed indoors when nighttime temperatures drop below 50 degrees. However, over the winter, you should bring your bonsai inside once nightly lows begin to approach freezing. The plant should be transferred to a north-facing doorstep during cold periods so it may go partially dormant. Boxwood should also be kept cool and away from sunlight. A boxwood plant should be placed outside after a period of dormancy, and its watering and feeding schedule should be increased once it is placed in a location with more light.

When and How to Water African Boxwood

You should never neglect the watering of your boxwood. When the tree’s soil gets dry, water it immediately and never allow the soil to dry completely. Until you get to know the requirements of a tree, you should use a moisture meter to determine the soil’s moisture level. A plant should be watered until water begins running out of the pot’s holes.

Fertilizing Needs for African Boxwood

For your bonsai to remain beautiful and healthy, fertilizing is always necessary. Fertilizer is essential to replenish a soil’s supply of nutrients periodically, since a shrub is growing in such a small amount of land. Liquid fertilizer is suitable for any general purpose and is available at most garden centers. Through cold seasons and dormancy, common boxwood should not be fertilized.

How to Train Your African Boxwood Bonsai

Since boxwood is a complex tree, training should be thoroughly studied or left for a professional to handle. Most potted boxwood is already trained and only requires pruning and wiring. When you are trimming the plant, you should leave one or two pairs of leaves on each branch.  Leaves should be thinned to let sunlight get in them if they become very dense. Thinning of leaves also helps to encourage back-budding, and it prevents inner twigs from dying.

It is necessary to keep your shrub miniature; trimming and pinching are required. A new growth should be pinched and cut from a safe point that is furthest. All new growth should never be removed, thus sustaining the tree’s health. It is vital to evaluate each tree’s growth rate and adjust your trimming and pinching, since different trees grow at a different rate.

Common Pests and Diseases that Affect African Boxwood

Like any other tree, boxwood bonsai should be treated for insects and diseases because the plant is miniature. However, when a plant is properly cared for, the risk of infections decreases. Fungal infections, such as box blight, can attack boxwood bonsai. Nematodes, boxwood mite, boxwood leafminer, or boxwood mite are pests that often affect the boxwood bonsai. Spraying of specific pesticides for most pests and diseases is essential. In severe cases, a professional gardener should be consulted.

Repotting African Boxwood Bonsai

When a bonsai root system has been filled, repotting should be done periodically. Repotting helps to supply fresh soil and to enable more compactness for a root system. You should examine your tree’s root system each year to determine if it has become pot-bound since trees grow at different rates. The potting process is easy and safe if performed correctly and at the right time in most cases. Repotting should be done in mid-summers. The soil and shrub should both be removed from a pot when repotting.

Bonsai Care, Bonsai Species, Indoor Bonsai Trees

How to Care For Rosemary Bonsai

Rosemary Bonsai is known not only for its beauty but also for its distinctive flavor and medicinal value; the rosemary herb is a perfect plant for your bonsai gardening. The rosemary is an attractive, tiny-leafed shrub that produces fragrant white, blue, or pink flowers during summer and spring. With the herb partially shedding its fibrous bark, the bonsai plant achieves a beautiful “old” look, even when the herb is still young. Easy to care for, the rosemary bonsai requires a proper location and attention to thrive well inside a house.

How to Care for the Rosemary Bonsai

Obtaining a rosemary bonsai is easy since one can purchase it from a nursery plant or collect one from nature (if you’re an explorative gardener). Bonsai gardeners know that the crucial task is caring for the rosemary bonsai. So, how do you care for the rosemary bonsai?

Positioning Your Rosemary Bonsai

The location of the rosemary bonsai in the house determines well how it will thrive. That said, positioning describes lighting and temperature conditions under which the plant is maintained. We recommend that you place your plant close to the patio door or close to the window. This will allow it to obtain optimal natural light and sun warmth, about six to eight hours each day. The rosemary plant thrives in warm and humid environments but still exhibits some winter-hardiness. Therefore, the plant can be grown in USDA Zone 7 areas successfully. However, temperatures below ten degrees Fahrenheit are lethal for the plant.

Watering Your Rosemary Bonsai

Water is essential for the growth of the rosemary bonsai. However, take caution in watering the rosemary plant. The rosemary plant does not like wet roots and can survive a day or two on dry soil. Since the rosemary plant is sensitive to overwatering, you should use soil that has good drainage. Using terra cotta pots for your rosemary bonsai can aid in avoiding overwatering with the pots allowing the soil to dry out quicker. We recommend that you water the rosemary bonsai when the soil is nearly dry. During the watering process, allow the rosemary plant to soak up water till the soil surface on top is damp.

Fertilizing Your Rosemary Bonsai

With small amounts of soil in the pot, the nutrient supply will run out as the rosemary plant grows. That explains why fertilizing is essential in achieving optimal health for your bonsai plants. After all, no one likes their plants weak and dull-looking. During the growth period of the rosemary bonsai, a weekly supply of supplemental fertilizer is crucial. After the rosemary bonsai has matured, fertilizing it twice yearly would serve the plant best. While fertilizing, you should use the fertilizers at half the recommended strength. The application of the fertilizer should be done by misting.

Training Your Rosemary Bonsai

If you’d like to add glamour to your rosemary bonsai, training is essential. In most cases, when mature rosemary bonsai are sold at tree nurseries, they are trained. The only requirement is periodic pinching and trimming of the plant to keep it miniature. To do this, remove all new growth beyond the plant’s first set of leaves. Eliminate the dead branches as well. With growth rates for different bonsai trees, the evaluation of one’s tree growth rate is vital for optimal trimming and pinching.

What Pests and Diseases Affect Rosemary Bonsai?

When it comes to indoor growing of the rosemary bonsai, gardeners should beware of powdery mildew. This refers to the white and powdery fungus that develops on the rosemary plant if the house had humid conditions and poor air circulation. While the fungus may not kill the bonsai, it makes it more susceptible to other diseases and attacks by insects. To avoid this, keep the house’s humidity low, with good air circulation. Aphids and spider mites are pests to look out for when caring for the bonsai. Treatment of your rosemary plant using non-toxic pesticide soap or any sulfur-based fungicide before the total infestation is essential in getting rid of the pests and fungi.

Unlike more complicated bonsai trees, the rosemary is quite easy to cultivate, even for beginners. While rosemary is viewed by many as a culinary item for seasoning, the plant is also a perfect choice for artistic purposes by bonsai gardeners. With several varieties to choose from, one can hardly get enough of the rosemary bonsai that come in abundant colors, shapes, and scents.