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Outdoor Bonsai Trees

Bonsai Species, Bonsai Tree Care Basics, Flowing Bonsai Trees, Outdoor Bonsai Trees, Uncategorized

How To Grow Japanese Wisteria Bonsai

Many bonsai enthusiasts love shrubs and vines that highlight flowers rather than branches or foliage of the plant. The wisteria or the Wisteria frutescens grows in the United States Department of Agriculture hardiness zone 6 to 9. Furthermore, it is considered the most popular vine when it comes to growing bonsai. The Japanese wisteria bonsai displays some beautiful purple flowers which tend to bloom up to 12’’. This means that it is best to grow wisteria as large plants (2 to 3 feet tall for a perfect visual balance). In this article, we shall be discussing how to grow Japanese wisteria bonsai.

How to Grow Japanese Wisteria Bonsai

· Create softwood cutting from the wisteria plant during summer when growing a new bonsai. It is highly recommended to cut the softwood root when the temperature is above 70 degrees Fahrenheit.

· Once that is done, you will take the shoot and plant it in a bigger container. By doing so, you will be giving the roots ample space to extend as time progresses. You will then place your container in partial shade; this will allow the branches and trunk to thicken. You will move it to a bonsai pot once the plant has aged and thickened.

· If you desire a new shape, you will start styling your bonsai’s trunk using a wire; you should perform this process with utmost care. It is best to start training it when its root system is well established. It would be best if you shaped the branches by pruning it only. When not cared for, the branches can snap easily despite having a pliable feeling.

· You will transfer your wisteria bonsai tree to a larger container. Use the soil that was used in growing the bonsai when it has grown to 2 feet tall. Your bonsai should have an older tree resemblance despite it being a miniature.

· As you repot your bonsai tree, you should consider pruning the old dead roots along with some live new roots for it to fit perfectly in your pot. By doing so, you will be putting it in a mature, growing phase, which tends to encourage more flowering and produce less vegetation.

· Once the flowering has finished, you should consider repotting your bonsai each year. Most bonsai trees are repotted in early spring prior to new growth. However, when you repot wisteria earlier, it will suffer significantly.

Where to Position Your Japanese Wisteria

It would be best if you considered placing your Japanese wisteria in the shade. However, ensure that it has access to sunlight, especially during morning and evening hours.

Watering Your Japanese Wisteria

Japanese wisteria bonsai requires an excellent water supply when growing, particularly before and after the blooming cycle. Consider setting the pot in a tray of water; this will allow the tree to take the amount of water it requires. Once the topsoil becomes wet, the tray should be removed.

Fertilizing Your Japanese Wisteria 

Japanese wisterias are considered some of the greatest feeders when it comes to bonsai. However, it would be best if you feed your tree with a low nitrogen fertilizer since they trap their nitrogen from the atmosphere. You will promote foliar growth when you feed it nitrogen-rich fertilizer. 

Training Your Japanese Wisteria 

You can train your Japanese wisteria to come up with a shape that will best suit your needs. To do this, you will require performance wiring. By doing so, you will be able to create the desired style and shape; however, this should be done before the blooming phase is complete.

Common Japanese Wisteria Pests and Diseases

There is no doubt that wisteria is a hardy and fast-growing tree; however, it is prone to root rot. Usually, this occurs when the tree is exposed to excess moisture. To prevent this from occurring, you should consider watering your plant when the soil is dry. In addition to that, Japanese wisteria tends to suffer fungal infections such as powdery mildew and leaf spot. To prevent this, you should consider removing the affected leaves early enough. 

Conclusion

Growing a Japanese wisteria bonsai tree is relatively easy; by following the above-discussed tips, you will be able to grow one with the utmost ease. As we conclude this article, we hope that it has been of great help to grow the Japanese wisteria bonsai tree.

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

Juniper Bonsai Sun Requirements

juniper bonsai

Juniper bonsai is by far the most popular evergreen miniature tree in the United States. This is because the tree features one of the most beautiful designs. Juniper bonsai includes more than 50 different species, with Needle juniper and Chinese juniper bonsai trees being some of the most popular. In addition to their popularity, taking care of these bonsai trees is relatively easy.

Light is an essential requirement in plants’ life, and bonsai are no different. As a result, in this article, we shall be discussing Juniper bonsai sun requirements.

Juniper Bonsai Sun Requirements

Juniper bonsai requires more than four hours of sunlight a day. Therefore, you should consider placing it in a location where it has ample access to sunlight. It is highly advisable to place your juniper bonsai outside throughout the year. However, during the winter season, you should consider protecting your juniper bonsai once the temperature drops below -10 degrees Celsius or 14 degrees Fahrenheit.

Some juniper bonsai species tend to change foliage color in frosty seasons to purple-brown; this is said to be its frost protection mechanism. Their foliage will turn back to green during the spring season. It would be best if you always kept in mind that juniper bonsai require an ample supply of sunlight (not less than four hours a day).

Juniper Bonsai: Indoor or Outdoor? 

Should juniper bonsai be kept indoors or outdoors? This is a question most individuals with juniper bonsai tend to ask themselves. Since juniper bonsai require ample supply of sunlight, it is highly recommended to place your bonsai outside; this will allow it to have the maximum supply needed for sunlight per day. However, you might consider bringing your bonsai indoors during special occasions so you can display it in a prominent place. Ensure that your bonsai does not remain indoors for over a few days at a time. This is because the atmosphere is one of the greatest detriments to your bonsai’s health. 

Where to Place the Juniper Bonsai in Your Yard

How To Care For a Juniper Bonsai Tree

By now, you probably have understood that juniper is an incredible miniature tree, and it is best grown outdoors. Therefore, you should consider placing your miniature tree in your yard, and it has to be maintained during cold winter seasons. To do this, you might consider burying your miniature tree in the ground (best done without a pot) until to its rim and then mulch it up to the first branch. You might also consider placing your juniper bonsai in a shed or unheated garage. Usually, during the winter season, juniper bonsai do not require sunlight since they are in a dormant state. You will, however, continue watering the tree for two weeks.

During summer, spring and fall, the juniper bonsai should be placed in your yard; ensure that it is in a location where it can access sunlight in the morning and evening and shade during the afternoon. 

How Many Hours of Light do Juniper Bonsai Need?

Juniper bonsai requires a minimum of four hours of sunlight per day; this aids in improving its development and enhances photosynthesis significantly. To achieve ample sunlight, it is best to have your juniper bonsai in your yard. Place it in an open location where it can get both morning and evening sunlight. Nevertheless, you should consider shading it in the afternoon, especially during summer times, when the temperatures are high.

In addition to four hours of sunlight a day, ensure that the soil used in growing your juniper bonsai is relatively dry. Ensure your tree is outside and in the brightest spot where it will receive ample supply of sunlight throughout the day. 

Conclusion

Despite it being a great idea to have your juniper bonsai placed in a place with ample supply of sunlight, it is highly advisable to place it in a place where it will enjoy the afternoon shade. This is highly essential, especially during summer seasons. By doing so, you will significantly increase its chances of survival and improve its health. Therefore, ensure that it gets exposed to sunlight as early as possible and allow it to enjoy both morning and evening sunlight when the temperatures are not that high. As we conclude, we hope that this article has been of great benefit when it comes to juniper bonsai sun requirements.

Bonsai Care, Bonsai Species, Outdoor Bonsai Trees, Uncategorized

Cotoneaster Bonsai Leaves Turning Brown

Proper care is vital in bonsai tree cultivation because it ensures healthy and beautiful growth. When your Cotoneaster bonsai leaves start turning brown, then you must be doing something wrong. Brown leaves are a clear indication that your Cotoneaster bonsai is having a hard time.

Your bonsai tree needs immediate attention whenever you notice the stem or leaves turning brown. In this article, we will take an in-depth look at the reasons behind the brown leaves and the steps you need to take to revive your precious Cotoneaster bonsai.

Causes of Browning Leaves in Cotoneaster Bonsai

Before we start reviving your Cotoneaster bonsai tree, we need to take a look at the common causes of browning leaves. 

Cotoneaster trees are a deciduous plant with dark green leaves that turn yellow, red, and orange during the autumn season. With adequate care, your bonsai should remain beautiful and healthy for many years. The beauty of Cotoneaster bonsai increases as your tree matures. It can, therefore, be stressful when you start noticing the beauty of your bonsai fading. Let us take a look at some of the reasons why your bonsai leaves might be turning brown.

Over-watering Causing Browning Leaves in Cotoneaster Bonsai

Most beginners in bonsai tree cultivation make the colossal mistake of over-watering. In some cases, individuals tend to think that a lot of water is essential in the healthy growth of bonsai trees. Yes, your bonsai tree needs water, but not excessive amounts.

Why does over-watering cause browning leaves in Cotoneaster bonsai? Well, the water gets trapped, thereby leading to the rotting of the roots. You have probably learned by now that you need a healthy root system when it comes to bonsai tree cultivation.

When the roots start rotting, your cotoneaster bonsai will begin to wilt and eventually die if something is not done. The browning of the leaves is among the first indications of a dying tree. Not enough water and nutrients are getting to your steam and leaves due to the rotting roots.

Under-watering Causing Browning Leaves in Cotoneaster Bonsai

Under-watering will also result in browning of your Cotoneaster bonsai leaves. This scenario usually happens when individuals forget to water their trees over prolonged periods. You should not let your Cotoneaster bonsai soil dry out for extended periods.

You need to evaluate your bonsai tree’s water requirement and adjust the watering schedule appropriately. Take your time to determine how often your Cotoneaster bonsai needs watering and the amount of water required.

Lack of sufficient water will lead to a dried-up trunk and browning of the leaves. Ensure that you monitor the water requirement of your Cotoneaster bonsai to help you make a consistent watering schedule. Understand that a watering schedule that works for another individual might not work for you.

Low Light Causing Browning Leaves in Cotoneaster Bonsai

Bonsai trees need sufficient light, just like all other trees. The fact that you have your bonsai tree indoors does not mean that you shouldn’t provide enough light. Browning of Cotoneaster bonsai leaves will start when there is insufficient sunlight.

Morning sunlight and afternoon shade are the ideal conditions for your Cotoneaster bonsai during the spring, fall, and summer. Place your Cotoneaster bonsai on a bench or table to ensure that it receives a sufficient amount of sunlight.

Low light will cause browning leaves in Cotoneaster bonsai within a short period. Most people have the wrong notion that indoor plants don’t need direct sunlight. The Cotoneaster bonsai particularly needs a lot of sunlight, especially during summer and spring.

How to Revive Cotoneaster Bonsai from Browning Leaves

1. Identify the cause

To revive Cotoneaster bonsai from browning leaves, you need to start by identifying the problem. Determining the root cause of the browning leaves will help you find the best solution to the problem. Start by inspecting your bonsai tree to spot any signs of pest infestation.

Look for any signs that might point to under-watering or over-watering. You must also inspect the position of your Cotoneaster bonsai to determine whether there is sufficient lighting.

2. Trim the dead spots

Trim all the dead spots to encourage new growth in your Cotoneaster bonsai tree. Use trimming shears to get rid of all the affected regions.

3. Treat your bonsai

bonsai watering

Once you have determined the cause of the browning leaves, then you need to start treating the problem. In the case of pests and diseases, ensure that you use an organic or gentle insecticide. Change your watering schedule in situations where under-watering or over-watering was the cause of the browning leaves.

4. Give it time

Your Cotoneaster bonsai will need some time to heal. You must exercise patience while maintaining a regular watering schedule. The healing process is slow, but your bonsai will eventually start thriving.

Conclusion

Browning of your Cotoneaster bonsai leaves can be caused by different reasons, including environmental factors, watering schedule, and nutrient issues. This tutorial should help you identify the problem and solve it quickly.

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, 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, Outdoor Bonsai Trees

Training Japanese Maple Bonsai

One of the main reasons why bonsai are so unique and beautiful is the training that goes into growing each tree. Training is crucial to not only the appearance but also the health of the bonsai. Japanese Maple bonsai in particular need maintenance pruning as well as structural pruning. Wiring is another crucial training technique used to shape branches and trunks. 

But there is no one way to train a Japanese Maple bonsai. Every bonsai grower is free to style their tree any way they choose. That being said, there are some classic styles which a bonsai grower can choose from. In this article, we will be going over some of the most popular styles for training a Japanese Maple bonsai. 

The Importance of Training Japanese Maple Bonsai

When you look at a Japanese Maple bonsai, the first thing you will notice is how beautiful it is. This beauty is achieved through training the tree. Pruning is used to evenly distribute leaves, decrease the size of the leaves, and more. Branches and trunks that have been bent through wiring present a more pleasing appearance. 

Pruning is not only important for the visual appeal but for the health of the bonsai as well. In nature, Japanese Maple trees’ leaves grow abundantly at the top of the tree. This causes the leaves located at the bottom of the tree to wither up and die, since light is not able to reach the leaves at the bottom of the tree.

How to Prune Japanese Maple Bonsai

Pruning is done by strategically removing leaves from branches. As previously mentioned, pruning is used to force leaves to grow further down and towards the center of the tree. While pine and coniferous trees prefer to be pruned by hand, the Japanese Maple is deciduous and can be pruned with shears or scissors. 

In addition to removing leaves, you can also take branches off the tree. Do this carefully and thoughtfully. You should remove branches that are dead, those that grow too far out, and those that hang too far down, rather than growing upwards. In the end, it is up to you to decide which branches aren’t needed.

How to Wire Japanese Maple Bonsai

Wiring your Japanese Maple can bend your bonsai’s branches or trunk. This is not an instantaneous event; the wiring process takes a few months before the branch will be in the position you want. The wire will need to be removed once the branch is bent. The wire will cut into the bark and scar the tree if it is not removed soon enough.

Begin wiring your tree at any time throughout the year. For Japanese Maples, aluminum wire is preferred. Simply wrap the wire around the branch you wish to bend. Once the branch is wired, bend it to the desired angle or shape. Then, wait!

Different Shaping Styles for Japanese Maple Bonsai

There are many different bonsai styles out there. Take what you will from these styles and leave the rest. Your tree can look exactly like a certain style, or you could take an aspect or two from one and make it your own. This is completely up to you! Experiment and have fun when training your Japanese Maple!

The first common Japanese Maple Style is the Broom style. Japanese Maple is perfect for this style since it works best with bonsai with fine branches with growth primarily at the top of the tree. The Broom style involves lots of growth rounded at the top of the tree. In this style, there is no growth at the bottom half of the tree.

Your Japanese Maple can also be styled in an upright, formal position. In this style, the bonsai’s trunk is straight up and its branches are evenly distributed throughout the tree. This style can be achieved by pruning the leaves and branches so that they grow at the bottom of the tree as well as the top. Their leaves should go out further than the trunk. A similar style is the informal upright style. The only difference is the trunk is not straight. Instead, it is curved into an S shape and the bottom of the trunk is thicker than the top. 

The last popular style we will talk about is the slanting bonsai style. In this style, the trunk is slanted to one side. The trunk’s base should be closer to the pot on the opposite side of which your tree is slanted. So, if your trunk is slanted towards the left, the base of the trunk will be off to the right.

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, Outdoor Bonsai Trees

How To Care For The Japanese Maple Bonsai Tree

Cultivating and taking care of bonsai trees can seem challenging and labor-intensive, but once you know what you are doing, it isn’t as difficult as it appears. It all comes down to keeping the tree alive, initially; then, once you’re used to watering and pruning it regularly, the more advanced activities are less overwhelming. This article will instruct you how to take care of a Japanese maple (Acer palmatum) bonsai tree.

Japanese maples should generally be kept outside, including the bonsai variety. They like sunlight but should be moved to the shade in the heat of midday. A Japanese maple can even stay outside to fall into dormancy in the winter, as it is a hardy plant, but should be protected from temperatures below 14° Fahrenheit.

Watering Japanese Maple Bonsai

Japanese maples need to be watered daily while they’re growing, and sometimes more than once a day, depending on the drainage of the soil, according to Bonsai Empire. A general rule of thumb is to water once the soil is slightly dry. The soil should never be allowed to dry out completely, and when watering, be sure to soak it thoroughly so as to wet the whole root system. This means watering until moisture seeps out of the drainage holes. Rainwater is best, as it is slightly alkaline (which helps these trees thrive), but if you only have tap water, it won’t hurt the tree.

Fertilizing Japanese Maple Bonsai

Provide your Japanese maple with high nitrogen fertilizer in the early spring every two weeks, says Bonsai Outlet, as newly unfurling leaves need the nourishment. Later, fertilize with a much more diluted solution every other week in summer, but take care to not feed with the regular strength and frequency at summer’s hottest. In the late summer to early fall, use a nitrogen-free fertilizer and taper off before winter hits. Be careful not to fertilize too little or too much to ensure a well-proportioned tree.

Pruning Japanese Maple Bonsai

To keep your bonsai tree under control and in the shape you wish it to be, you must prune it. Bonsai Experience mentions pruning unsightly growths and protrusions and pruning the tips of the branches to keep them from growing. You may even snip away individual leaves or groups of leaves. While the top of the tree grows more rapidly than the lower branches, it’s important to observe the entire tree for growth regularly, as it can quickly get out of hand if pruning is neglected.

Wiring Japanese Maple Bonsai

Another technique for shaping your bonsai is wiring the branches. This involves wrapping wire around flexible branches and positioning them in the way you wish for them to grow. For Japanese maples, the perfect time for wiring is in the winter, when the cold has already stripped away the tree’s leaves, making the branches significantly easier to wrap. Branch growth during the spring and summer can also cause the wire to bite into the branch, causing scars. Use anodized aluminum wire. According to Bonsai Empire, starting out with 1mm, 1.5mm, 2.5mm, and 4mm thick wire should be enough to start with. It’s also best to purchase some raffia and soak it before applying it to larger branches to prevent the wire from damaging them. Once your tree is all dressed up in raffia, you can take two branches of similar size and wire them together in several places on the tree while wiring all other branches singly. Start by wrapping the wire around the trunk, and then wrap the wire around the branch or branches you desire from base to tip. Once wired, you can bend them into the preferred shape, making sure the wire will hold it. Once a few months have passed and the branches are set in their shape, and before the growing season, unwire them and remove the raffia.

Repotting Japanese Maple Bonsai

Repotting requires having the right soil and pruning the roots. Bonsai Outlet says to repot every one to two years for trees less than ten years old and every two to three years for older trees in early spring—before the buds open. Be sure to prune the roots so it fits in its container, but cut away no more than half of the root mass of young trees, and cut away even less for older trees. Most sources recommend using a soil mixture of akadama, pumice, and lava rock, but as long as the soil drains well, it should be fine. Also, refrain from fertilizing directly after repotting; wait for about two weeks.

Propagating Japanese Maple Bonsai Trees

The simplest way of propagating is growing the maples from seeds, but you can also take a cutting from a living maple in the summer. If you are propagating this way, all you need to do is cut a new branch from the parent tree, removing the lower leaves. Then place the cutting into a pot of soil, burying at least one leaf node, Agverra instructs. They also suggest putting the pot in an open plastic bag to keep moisture in, ensuring it remains wet at all times. Put the pot in a warm spot, but not in direct sunlight. When it begins growing new leaves, this is a sign that it has rooted.

Obtaining a Japanese Maple Tree

As mentioned above, you could propagate a new tree by asking around to see if anyone is willing to give you a few cuttings. However, local DIY stores, such as Lowe’s or Home Depot may already have a few for sale, or perhaps a local nursery. If all else fails, a simple Google search will produce many results, from seeds to seedlings, to even already trained bonsai.

Diseases and Pests in Japanese Maple Bonsai

Japanese maples are pretty hardy, but there are still a few things that you should watch out for. Japanese beetles, for instance, will destroy all leaf growth if allowed. Other pests include scale bugs, mites, and mealybugs, according to Gardening Know How. The damage will manifest as small bumps or “cottony spots” on leaves and twigs. Wilting, yellowing, or puckering leaves can indicate aphids, and borers will show themselves as clumps of sawdust. Taking care of pests is as easy as treating your plant regularly with pesticide. As far as diseases go, canker can attack the tree, presenting itself as sap oozing from the bark. Yellowing, prematurely falling leaves is a sign of Verticillium wilt, and leaves rotting and falling are symptoms of Anthracnose. Pruning appropriately and clearing fallen debris from the base of your tree should prevent these diseases. Keep a close eye on young trees, however, as they have a higher chance of succumbing to diseases and the attacks of insects than that or older trees.