What Does Bonsai Mean?

what does bonsai mean


Bonsai Meaning

What does the word “Bonsai” mean? That’s a question that many beginners to the discipline of Bonsai might wonder. In the Oxford dictionary, “Bonsai” is defined as a “shrub or tree meant to be an ornament that is grown in a pot and synthetically prevented from being a normal-sized plant”. It is a discipline that has been around for thousands of years. In order to fully understand the full nature of the Bonsai, here is some extra information you need to know:


Bonsai History

Although the word “Bonsai” and the concept has been taken over by Japan, this concept was originally called “Pun-Sai” and it was a Chinese creation. They perfected the art of growing miniature trees in a container by 700 A.D. and they kept the concept to themselves for at least 400 years. However, when this discipline was introduced into Japan during the Kamakura Shogunate period from 1185-1333, they perfected the practice and renamed it “Bonsai”. It has been a well-established Japanese traditional ever since.


Bonsai and Spirituality

Of course, a lot of people relate the Bonsai tree to the practice of Zen Buddhism. While this is a worthy idea, the Bonsai can go much deeper than that. For some, this means that the Bonsai helps them become more in tune with the natural world. For others, Bonsai is a reminder that everything is elemental. The trees adapt, survive, and even thrive even within their limited surroundings. They are very resilient indeed.


Bonsai and Budo

Naturally, Budo is a martial arts practice. It requires a lot of training in order to do it right and to be able to practice the moves well. Although it may seem surprising to some, many Budo artists find inspiration in the Bonsai plant. This is because much like their training, the Bonsai is being trained as well. As they gaze at the Bonsai, they are made aware that their persistence in training will get them where they need to be as well.


Bonsai Trees in China

The earliest known reference to Bonsai trees in China occurs in the tomb of Crown Prince Zhang Huai in 706 A.D. There was a painting of two ladies-in-waiting who were each holding a Bonsai Tree. They were holding small paints in some very small dishes, and these would later become known as the Bonsai trees that we all know and love. Moreover, another Chinese reference to the Bonsai tree was in many Chinese works of literature. Moreover, many artists attempted to include at least one Bonsai tree in their masterpieces simply because this was a symbol of a man of affluence and culture.


Bonsai Trees in Japan

Even though the Bonsai tree didn’t become widespread in Japan until medieval times, they were first introduced to Japan some 1200 years as a religious or tourist artifact. They were first portrayed in Japanese art about eight hundred years ago, and archaeologists and historians alike both love everything that has to do with the Bonsai tree in Japan simply because it is a window into their culture. For it was during this time period that the Japanese were fascinated with everything regarding China.


So you see, the Bonsai tree is more than just a plant. It incorporates so many different themes that it is definitely an amazing discipline to be involved in. The “meaning” of Bonsai is truly very vast indeed. Bonsai is not just an art form, it is a way of life.

Best Indoor Bonsai Trees

Best Indoor Bonsai Trees


Indoor Bonsai Trees

There are various kinds of bonsai tree available to buy and to display. Some people will have differing opinions as to what makes the best indoor bonsai tree. There follows brief lowdowns on some of the most popular indoor bonsai trees including the Willow leaf, the Jade, and also the Chinese Elm bonsai tree.


Willow Leaf Ficus Bonsai Tree

As a type of bonsai tree the Willow leaf ficus offers good features including long light green leaves, and also for having a longer trunk than other types of bonsai. It was given it’s name as gardeners mentioned that it’s leaves meaning that it looked similar to a weeping willow tree.

Depending on how warm it is during the spring and summer months it is best to move the Willow Leaf bonsai outside and being it back inside during fall and winter.


Hawaiian Umbrella Bonsai Tree

This bonsai tree type originates as it name suggests from Hawaii. It is therefore best in a higher temperature environment and should be protected from low temperatures. Unlike other types of bonsai, it’s leaves grow quite quickly so extra pruning is often required. If you live in warmer climates then this type can be left outside providing there is no risk of frost at night.


The Chinese Elm Bonsai Tree

Perhaps the most important thing about the Chinese Elm bonsai tree is that this type of tree is the most commonly owned type of indoor bonsai. It is considered to be easy to care for this plant and that helps to explain why many people buy it to be the first indoor bonsai tree within their homes.

The Chinese Elm is quick growing and has small leaves, it is rugged and can last for years of cared for properly. This type is cheap and still looks the part, no wonder people start bonsai collections with it.


Fukien Tea Bonsai Tree

The most notable feature of the Fukien Tea type of bonsai tree is that it is a common type of bonsai throughout Asia and also in Australia as well. The Fukien has dark green leaves and it produces berries and sometimes flowers. That feature means that the Fukien Tea is a popular type among people that buy and display indoor bonsai trees within their homes.


Jade Bonsai Tree

Now the Jade bonsai tree is a type that originated in Africa. It does not usually flower unless it has been deprived of water. It does produce white flowers, and as it ages the trunk turns from green to red in color. It is best to keep indoors and to water sparingly.


After reviewing the popular types of bonsai trees it was decided that the best indoor variety was the Chinese Elm bonsai tree. That decision was reached as this variety had certain advantages when compared to the other trees it was compared with. It is easy to care for this type of bonsai, and it is not time consuming to do so. The Chinese Elm also looks impressive and makes for an attractive indoor plant.

Different Kinds Of Bonsai Trees

Different Kinds Of Bonsai Trees


Bonsai Trees

Contrary to popular belief, bonsai trees are not genetically dwarfed. They are just plants that are grown under certain conditions to ensure that they do not become so big. They comprise of a wide variety of trees. Each tree species has its specific requirements for growth, from the cultivation to care. There are different types of bonsai trees: indoor and outdoor.


Indoor bonsai trees

Unlike many other house plants, most bonsai species are meant to grow outside. They require ample and direct sunlight to grow and flourish. However, some species can tolerate indoor conditions, which makes them top the list of favorites when you want to get the house or office decorations. These trees are tropical or subtropical, meaning they need consistently high temperatures and high humidity all year round. Getting enough light can be difficult, but can be achieved with artificial light. Examples of suitable indoor bonsai trees are Ficus and Umbrella.


Ficus bonsai trees

Despite having very many species, two species are most appropriate to grow as they don’t require much maintenance and care. One of them is the Ficus benjamina, which is a fast-growing and evergreen tree. It also has lush foliage with fascinating roots. With between 800 and 2000 species, this tree is the most popular type of bonsai tree.

The other species is the ficus neriifolia. It is a willow-leafed tree that has thin leaves. They also have a substantial root spread.


Umbrella bonsai trees

This is another famous evergreen bonsai tree. It also has other names such as the Parasol plant or the Octopus tree. Its umbrella appearance makes it look great in a bonsai pot.

Also known as Schefflera arboricola, the umbrella bonsai buds back on old and worn out wood. Therefore, they require heavy pruning to achieve the desired shape. However, many people do not prefer them since they do not develop an entire woody trunk.


Outdoor bonsai trees

Many are the tree varieties that require to be kept on the outside and experience all four seasons. They, therefore, cannot do very well when place in the house. Outdoor bonsai trees have dormancy periods in the winter and these dormancy periods cannot be achieved indoors. Their care and maintenance are also different from indoor potted plants. This includes frequent watering and fertilizer addition. Some of the most favorite outdoor bonsai include Japanese Maple and Juniper.


Japanese maple bonsai trees

They are highly recommended, especially to those people who are just starting to develop bonsai tree hobby. They do not require so much care. They also have delicate leaves with conscious shades of gold, red (during autumn), and orange.

The Japanese maple bonsai tree performs really well when they are grown in sunny environments. That is why they are mostly grown outside. They, however, should be protected from frost or scorching days.


Juniper bonsai trees

The juniper bonsai trees are a species within the cypress family. With somewhere between 50 and 70 species, this is another very popular bonsai tree. These coniferous trees are evergreen with their foliage color ranging from light green to dark blue-green colors. The leaves appear needle-like when the tree is young.


Flowering bonsai trees

These are the bonsai species that fascinate almost all bonsai lovers. The fact that they are treated and styled using the same techniques as other species of the bonsai trees makes it even easier to grow them. However, they should be pruned on time and allowed to get enough sunlight for them to produce the desired flowers.


Fruiting bonsai trees

Anyone who has ever had a fruit right after it had been picked from a tree will tell you that it is by far much better than the ones you get from the store. However, the space to grow such trees might be limited, and that is where the fruiting bonsai trees come in. Even though the plant is smaller, it will still produce full-size fruits. They, therefore, make the perfect solution for you if you want to enjoy fresh fruit but have limited space.


Bonsai trees are beautiful. They bring the greater natural trees to the right into your space. Why not go ahead and your desired bonsai tree and enjoy it? It is quite easy.

How Do Bonsai Trees Stay Small

how do bonsai trees stay small


How Bonsai Trees Stay Small

Whereas this is usually a somewhat tricky question to ask, it without a doubt has an answer. What I know is that bonsai trees are generally small because we want them to be small-sized. When I trap the bonsai tree root in a pot, it means it will have a stunted growth hence making it small in size. Furthermore, the bonsai pots do not allow the trees to expand but this depends on the bonsai pot I will be using. Bonsai trees in smaller pots are usually small compared to those in larger containers.


Bonsai Wire Training

I use bonsai wire training because it is a vital method best for styling and training bonsai trees. When I wrap the wire around the tree branches am very much able to reposition as well as bend the branch. I usually do wiring in winter when the tree has shaded its leaves, enabling me to work very quickly. It will take a few months for the tree to get the required new shape, so I always pay close attention to remove the wires on time to avoid the creation of ugly scars.

Moreover, I also make use of the appropriate material while wiring, with this typically either annealed copper or anodized aluminum. These two types of material serve different purposes; copper is for pines and conifers, while aluminum is for deciduous. For starters, I would recommend you to use anodized aluminum since it is very easy to find on the market as well as to work with. However, during the use of these wires, I always make sure I protect the branches from being damaged. Therefore, I recommend that you first wrap the branches with raffia that has been soaked in water before commencing to wire the bonsai tree.


Kengai Bonsai Training

This type of training is for bonsai trees that are struggling to get enough light for its leaves. It is one of the most challenging methods to understand, so the main agenda for Kengai training is to create branches facing down along with upward-facing leaf pads on a downward trunk. However, most people usually mix things up when implementing it, resulting in not the intended outcome. If you do it properly, you will end up with the best results ever, and this will give an excellent impression from the pot.


Seki-joju Bonsai Training

Bonsai trees are forced to look for nutrients either in holes or cracks. Their roots are usually unprotected before reaching the ground; therefore, they need to have some defense mechanism in the sun. Seki-joju training comes along with some benefits, among them, is giving a good impression and image of the landscape and also a sense of age and struggle. On the other hand, it also has some disadvantages; Seki-joju can fail to give the image I want; for example, if I select a rock which is not appropriate chances of it giving me a poor image are very high.


Pruning Bonsai Trees

Just like any other tree or flower requires pruning, so does bonsai trees do. I prune bonsai trees to give it a designated size, shape as well as an appropriate style and enable it to provide an excellent impression to the eye. Furthermore, by pruning, I help the plant to keep its aesthetic value and the entire health status plus boosting its longevity. However, pruning varies with the type of bonsai training. For me to do pruning, there are several tools I require, such as:

Pruning scissors
Concave cutters

Then I identify the parts of my bonsai tree that needs to be pruned, especially the parts that are crowded to allow enough light to penetrate all the parts of the bonsai tree. Furthermore, annual remove half the new growth to balance and make my bonsai tree sizeable and well-shaped using a pruning scissor. Additionally, when I am doing away with large branches, I use concave cutters since the scissor is for thinning as well as trimming deciduous trees.


Based on the above information, I hope you have been able to understand how bonsai trees grow small and the reason why this is the case. Consequently, you are better-placed to understand thanks to this comprehensive guide I have taken you through to know whether this tree is a perfect fit for you.

Bonsai Trees For Beginners Indoors


Indoor Bonsai Trees For Beginners

Taking care of a bonsai tree is not as hard as one may think. It can be even easier if you grow a low maintenance tree. Low maintenance bonsai tree’s usually don’t need a strict amount of light, don’t need a lot of water, and need only occasional fertilizing and pruning.


Ficus Bonsai

The ficus bonsai is by far the most popular tree for beginners. This tree has somewhere between 800 and 2000 different species. Ficus’s are grown in all tropical regions and are best grown indoors.

Ficus bonsai’s like to have lots of light throughout the year. Placing the tree outside in the summer is not necessary, but can be done if temperatures remain above 60 degrees. They like high humidity, but they can survive in low humidity just fine.

Watering your ficus is like watering all other indoor bonsai trees. Do not water on a routine. Instead, check the bonsai’s soil once a day, twice during the summertime, and water if the soil is dry. For more detailed information, please check out our article on watering bonsai tree’s here.

Fertilizing should be done every week or two in the summer, and every two to four weeks in the winter.

Pruning is crucial in keeping up with the shape of the tree. Once 6-8 leaves have grown on a branch, two should be pruned. To reduce the size of the leaves, pruning can be used. To thicken the trunk, simply leave it alone for one or two years.

The easiest, most flexible branches to wire are thin and medium-strong branches. Wires should be regularly checked as they can cut into the branches very quickly, which can scar the tree. Branches that are strong can be wired with guy-wires as they can be left on the tree longer.


Jade Bonsai

The Jade bonsai tree has oval green, thick leaves on thin branches with a thick trunk. It’s bark is soft and green at first, when the tree is young, but as it ages it becomes red-brown. White small flowers can appear if the tree goes through a drought during the season.

This tree needs full sun and high temperatures. It can be grown outdoors with full sun, but it is best grown indoors with lots of light. The tips of the leaves will turn red if the tree is getting enough light.

Jade bonsai are able to store lots of water in their leaves. Scarce watering will work well, allow for the plant to dry out between watering. You can water the plant as little as every three weeks in the winter, but only if the tree is very cold. Water as soon as the plant dries in the winter. Over-watering is not a big problem as it is with other plants.

Fertilize once a month during the spring and autumn, it’s growing season.

This plant can be repotted every three years in the spring.

Jade bonsai respond quite well to pruning. This should be done regularly to force the growth of branches lower on the tree. Cutpaste can lead to rot and should be avoided. Wire will cut into the tree very quickly, so you should watch over the branches carefully.


Fukien Tea

The Fukien Tea Bonsai, also called the Carmona, has dark green small leaves with little white dots on the top and hairs on the bottom. Sometimes white flowers occur all year and can even produce berries.

The preferred temperature for these trees is around 70 degrees Fahrenheit (20 degrees Celsius). The tree should be placed in front of a south facing window where it can receive the most light possible. Artificial light may be necessary. This tree also does well with high humidity, which can be achieved with a humidity tray under the pot.

This tree is rather picky when it comes to watering. It does not like to be very wet, but it also doesn’t like being dry. Once the top soil has dried, it should be watered.

The type of fertilizer the Carmona prefers is solid organic. Fertilizer should be applied spring to autumn as often as it’s directions calls for, but less often in winter.

Fukien Tea’s respond well to pruning, which should be done often. Young shoots are easier to train as they are flexible and tender, while mature branches are hard and may need different tools to prune. Use caution when wiring.


The easiest bonsai tree’s to care for are the Ficus, Jade, and Carmona. Any of these trees are excellent choices for beginners. They are all relatively low maintenance but still are very rewarding to care for.

Easiest Bonsai Tree To Care For


Taking Care Of Bonsai Trees

Caring for bonsai trees is not as hard as one may think. Some bonsai trees are easier to care for than others. The Ficus bonsai is by far the easiest to care for because of it is low maintenance and resistant against most pests. The ficus’s leaves are poisonous for pets and should be kept away from all pets.


About The Ficus Bonsai

The ficus bonsai are mulberry plants, with 800 to 2000 different species. They are tropical, which means they are best grown indoors. The most popular species of Ficus is the Ficus Retusa, which has dark green, oval leaves and an s-curved trunk. Another is the Ficus Ginseng, which also has dark green, oval leaves and a thick trunk.

Ficus trees in the wild can sometimes grow over 1000 feet tall. All figs have milky sap that leaks from their wounds. Some can produce flowers, though some have hidden flowers in which fruit can grow. Only a specific kind of wasp can pollinate these flowers. The fruit grown can be red, yellow, green, or blue-purple.



The ficus tree is an indoor bonsai that cannot stand frost. This tree can only be placed outside in the summer if temperatures are consistently above 59 degrees Fahrenheit (15 degrees Celsius). Because it is a tropical tree, it needs lots of light, direct or indirect. Placing the tree in front of a South facing window where it can get as much light as possible is favorable. Figs can survive in low or high humidity, they’re not picky, but they thrive better in high humidity.



Just like any other bonsai, the Ficus should never be watered on a routine, but when the soil gets dry. Room temperature tap water will do fine, but it is suggested that you should let the water sit overnight to allow for any chlorine in the tap to evaporate. Because they are not so picky, they can withstand occasional under- or over-watering, but try not to too often.



Because the Ficus is tropical, it has no dormancy period in the winter. As such, the tree can be fertilized relatively consistently throughout the year. In the summer, you can fertilize every week or two, and every two to four weeks in the winter if the growth is consistent.



Thin and medium-strong branches are the easiest to wire because of their flexibility. However, the wires cut into bark very quickly and should be checked on regularly. When wiring strong branches, guy-wires should be used as they can stand wiring for a longer period.



After 6-8 leaves have grown on a branch, 2 should be pruned. The trunk should be left alone for a year or two if a thick trunk is desired. And if small leaves are wanted, pruning can be used to do so.



Every one to two years this tree should be repotted.



For the highest success possible, cuttings should be planted in mid-summer, but they can be planted any time. Air layering can be done in spring for best results.


Speical Training Techniques

Plant parts can be fused together by just touching each other with some pressure. Roots, branches, and trunks alike can be fused together. This technique can be used to fuse a bunch of little plants to make one big healthy plant.


Pests and Diseases

As mentioned before, the ficus is resistant against pests. In the winter, however, problems can still arise. Low light and dry air can cause the tree’s leaves to fall off. During these conditions, the tree can become infested with spider mites or scale. Using any insecticide sticks or sprays will get rid of the bugs, but the damage to the plant must also be taken care of. Artifical lighting can be used 12 to 14 hours a day as well as misting the leaves frequently will help significantly.


While most all bonsai tree’s are easy to care for, the Ficus bonsai are the best choice for beginners. Watering should be done when needed, which can be every few days depending on your plant, but never on a routine. Fertilizing should be done every few weeks. Pruning should be done regularly to ensure your plant is healthy, and wiring can be done to make your tree as appealing as you want it to be. Repotting should be done every few years or so, propagation should be done in the summer for best results, and trees can be fused together very easily. These trees are extremely resistant to pests unless they are damaged in the winter. Ficus bonsai are the best option for beginners and the easiest to take care of.

Bonsai Tree Soil

If you want to, you can skip right to our favorite bonsai soils by scrolling down to the very next section where we show you our favorites.  If you need to understand why having the correct soil for your Bonsai is important, we’ve out-lined the most important quick key points in this post. Its often over looked, but having the correct kind of Bonsai soil is key to successfully keeping beautiful bonsai trees. 🙂

Why Using Bonsai Soil is Important

Fertilizing your plant provides your Bonsai with nutrients it needs to survive. Some basic things you need in this fertilizer are Nitrogen, which helps with the growth of the leaves and stems, Potassium which helps in the overall health of your plant, and Phosphorus, which aids in root growth.

Your soil should also provide good aeration. Aeration is the process of air, water, and nutrients filtering down to the Bonsai’s roots.

In order to grow and thrive, Bonsai need to have special soil in order to drain properly. You cannot use just any soil, for a list of our favorite see above for our favorite kinds of soils. If you use regular potting soil, the plant’s roots won’t drain and will rot.


Our Favorite Bonsai Soils

Superfly Bonsai – Boon Bonsai Soil Mix

This first Bonsai soil is pre-mixed, so no extra effort is needed. It’s contents include Japanese Akadama, pumice, and black lava to help the draining process. This is a non-organic mix, meaning it has no bark, dirt, or mulch in it. This soil provides great water retention, drainage, and nutrient uptake while still getting air to the roots. Click here to check it out on Amazon.com.


Bonsai Jack Universal Organic Bonsai Soil Mix

While this next soil is also pre-mixed, it also provides great water absorption, particle size, and bulk density, and it has multiple options for how much product you get, ranging from 1 gallon to 28 gallons. Click here to check it out on Amazon.com.






Tropical Bonsai Tree Soil Blend Two Quarts From Tinyroots 

If you want a soil with lots of vitamins in minerals, this is the way to go. With 28 vitamins and minerals, it also includes Akadama, clay, river sand, and pine bark. Click here to check it out on Amazon.com.



A purely Akadama soil is also an excellent option. This soil was mined in Japan, and darkens when wet, providing a good indicator for when you should water your Bonsai. Click here to check it out on Amazon.com.


 Superfly Bonsai – Traditional Japanese Bonsai Soil Mix

This last soil is a more traditional Japanese soil with Japanese Kiryu, Akadema, and Hyuga Pumice and no dirt, mulch, or bark. Also, the drainage, nutrient uptake, and water retention are very good. Click here to check it out on Amazon.com.


Common Aspects of Good Bonsai Soil

Your Bonsai soil should provide a couple important things.

Water needs to be able to immediately drain from the pot. If the water does not drain, the soil is too water retentive, it lacks aeration, and salts will likely build up. Inevitably, the roots will rot and your Bonsai will die.

As mentioned before, Bonsai soil is a special kind of soil, not like regular soil. That being said, this soil does not provide enough nutrients for the Bonsai alone. In order for your Bonsai to be healthy, you need to add in nutrients with a fertilizer that has Nitrogen, Potassium, and Phosphorus.

Bonsai trees’ roots need oxygen, which is why they require special soil that allows for air flow.


Different Kinds of Bonsai Soils

Akadama Bonsai Soil

Akadama is a Japanese baked clay, specially made for Bonsai. This needs to be sifted before you use it, and after two years it breaks down, reducing aeration, and needs to be repotted. If you want to avoid re-potting, you can use a mixture with Akadama and other soils. While this soil can be expensive, it is easily accessible. Click here to check out Akadama Bonsai Soil.


Lava Rock Bonsai Soil (Scoria)

Lava rock is another good choice because it retains water and your Bonsai’s roots can’t grow into the rocks. It gives your potting a distinct look as most of these bonsai soils are black. Click here to check out our favorite Lava Rock Bonsai Soil.






Pumice Bonsai Soil

Pumice, a soft volcanic product, absorbs water and nutrients well while still helping to retain water. This also helps the roots to spread and grow. this bonsai soil has a lot of common aspects with the lava rock bonsai soil, but, is richer in sodium.  Click here to check out our favorite brands of pumice bonsai soil.




Fine Gravel Bonsai Soil

Fine gravel helps with the draining process while simultaneously helping the roots to spread and grow as well. Gravel may be used in the bottom of your Bonsai pot. However, most experts do not use this anymore, they instead prefer to use a mix of Akadama, lava rock, and pumice. Click here to check out our favorite fine gravel bonsai soil choices.




Organic Potting Compost Bonsai Soil

Organic potting compost is a mixture often containing sand, moss, and perlite, a volcanic glass. This mix retains too much water and doesn’t drain well. While using it on it’s own is considered a bad idea, using it along with some of the other soils (Akadama, lava rock, pumice) works just fine. Click here to check it out on Amazon.com.





We hope that with this proper information you are able to enjoy your Bonsai tree, keeping it health and happy!


Every living thing both plants and animals have a life cycle and a life expectancy they are naturally subjected to follow. The Bonsai plant is not an exception to this fact. The bonsai too has its own life duration and cycle. Although, its existence in different species has given rise to varying longevity.

Generally, the Bonsai plant has a life expectancy as its parent plant. The oldest known Bonsai plants grown in Sanai-Shogun-no-Matsu, Japan before the second world war in the seventeenth century has lasted for over two hundred years since its cultivation.

This ancient plant was originally part of a white pine tree with a life expectancy of five hundred years and has strived in good health since its germination.

Many bonsai trees can live for a very long time, while others for just a couple of years. However, the lifespan of any living thing depends greatly on the care and affection tended towards it.

Planning a bonsai tree from the seed level is can be a very long process, that requires lots of patience and consistency. The process is slow, but you actually get rewarded. When planting a Bonsai, you will have to allow it to take enough time to grow its root and grow strong before you can begin training and trimming it. The bonsai tree has different species thereby creating different longevity for the tree. For beginners, here are the ten best bonsai tree species;

  • Juniper
  • Maple
  • Pine
  • Elm
  • Redwood
  • Azalea
  • Ficus
  • Yew
  • Dwarf umbrella
  • Bald cypress

The type of bonsai species you pick should depend on the environment where you’ll be keeping it. Your regions climate should also be considered. Try to choose species that can grow to full size in your region. If you would like to grow your bonsai tree outdoor, deciduous species such as magnolias, oaks or Japanese elms are excellent options.

The bonsai tree has an age range from a hundred years to five thousand years, Species like bangan, peepal, acacia, birch, field maple, gingko, cryptomena, mesquite, cotton tree, and common alder are likely to live beyond 100 years when grown in the wild. Species like the European beech, common hawthorn, hornbeam, holly live and natural ash live up to 400 years. The scot pine species live up to 500 years.

The Yew species can outlive all other species with a life expectancy of 5000 years. When the bonsai trees are cultivated, the life expectancy of the tree species is expected to be greater, since they were more pampered and protected from elements. When a tree is protected, its lifespan is prolonged for decades. Continuous pruning and nice ideal growing conditions can ensure excellent vigor and health.

Here are some examples of old bonsai trees and their location;

  • Ficus bonsai tree at cresol Italy which is over 1000 years old.
  • Old juniper bonsai tree at mansei-en Japan which has been proven to be over a thousand years old.
  • Japanese white pine that survived Hiroshima.
  • Old bonsai tree at shunkaen which is 800 years old.

Proper trimming of a bonsai tree is the key to maintaining its small stature while keeping it healthy. Trimming diseased or sick leaves and branches increase the health of the tree. It’s true that any plant can be trained to be a bonsai. When choosing or selecting a plant for longevity, try to choose a variety that is known for its strength and adaptability.


Ensuring that the plant is well catered for and free from diseases and stress, can help prolong its natural lifespan. The bonsai is indeed an art all must practice but growing a species with less care and dedication ruins the pride of the art and tells poorly of the groomer’s reputation.

Hope we could help you with the information you needed, thanks for reading through.