Bonsai Care, Bonsai Supplies, Bonsai Tree Care Basics

Best Working Techniques for Thickening a Bonsai Trunk

Bonsai is an art form from East Asia that employs cultivation techniques to create small trees in containers that resemble the shape and scale of full-grown trees. Specific attention is usually required on the trunk of a bonsai simply because it is one of the most attractive features of any tree. Some of the cultivation techniques used by growers lead to problems that result in a weak or narrow trunk. However, some methods can be used to thicken and strengthen a Bonsai trunk.

Best working techniques for thickening a Bonsai Trunk

The following are some of the techniques that can be used to thicken Bonsai trunks. You should note that some of them may take much time to get the desired results.

Splitting the Trunk

This is the quickest method to thicken your bonsai trunk. You need to split it down physically in the middle and use a wire to keep the two halves separate while the trunk heals. When employing this technique, you must remove the bonsai from the pot and remove all the soil in its roots. Split the trunk in the middle using a saw while holding the tree in an upside-down position. After that, you can return the tree to its pot with the help of wires or wooden edges to keep the two parts of the trunk from each other. This technique should be used on species that can cope with this type of injuries, such as elms and boxwood.

Induced Trunk Swelling

This is an old method used by the Japanese. You should place a wire tourniquet on the base of the tree to induce swelling. This technique will give you quick results in a single growing season when you apply to a fast-growing material. The scar left by the wire tourniquet will still be visible but its effect on the trunk will be visible as well. The technique results in the thickening of the area around the base only. Therefore, you should make a tapered trunk in species that do not taper naturally, such as the Chinese elm. Take care when using this technique, as it leaves a permanent scar behind.

Intentional Scarring

This technique is mainly used to thicken the trunks of a pine or Juniper tree. With the help of a knife, you can carve vertical lines on the back down to the sap layer. The carving will result in an injury that the tree will recover from. Scar tissue will be produced that will lead to the thickening of the trunk. The Juniper Bonsai is one species that has shown good results when a reverse taper was done mid-trunk. Its trunk was cured in this way, since it only requires single scarring. The technique is repeated once every two years to heal the reverse taper. A trunk can be thickened at the base when you carve three or four scars around its circumference and leave it for some time to heal.

Growing in Large Trunks

This method will give you formal and upright trunks with a good taper. You need to plant the tree in-ground or use an escape technique whereby you plant them in a larger can. This will give allowance to the roots to escape through the drain holes of your nursery can down into the earth’s surface. You should also remember to continue watering them through the can. When the time comes for harvesting the tree, you will simply cut its roots at the can. These roots will still have an intact root ball. The top of the tree must be given time to recover before you can cut its trunk. When using this technique, you should let the tree grow naturally to a point where the top can wave in the wind. This will result in the development of large buttressed trunks after a period of close to 5 years. Thereafter, you can break the tops and Jin in the upper part.

Some other techniques can be used to thicken a bonsai trunk. However, some of them can prove to be very risky and dangerous and will require extra caution. The above techniques have been used for a long time and their results are guaranteed. Therefore, you should choose the technique that is easiest for you.

Bonsai Care, Bonsai General Info, Bonsai Tree Care Basics

Grow Bonsai Trees From Cuttings

If you have decided to start growing a bonsai tree, you must first know the life cycle stage of the tree you want to begin with. Bonsai can be grown from seed, from the bonsai shop, from layers of soil, or from cuttings. If you are just starting, you may want to grow your tree from cuttings.

The first stage of the bonsai tree’s growth cycle (seeding) is the most difficult. Keep in mind that if you start with seeds, you will need to create an ideal environment for the bonsai to live. Therefore, starting from cuttings will be less stressful because the bonsai has already completed the most crucial stage of its life cycle.

Let’s take a look at each strategy in more detail. You can have a very lovely bonsai no matter how you start it.

Grow Bonsai from Seeds

Growing a bonsai from seeds can be similar in many ways to a parent-child relationship. Some experienced bonsai tree designers choose this option because it is the most satisfying for them.

Growing Bonsai by Layering

Another option similar to growing from seeds is to start growing bonsai from land or air layers. This method takes less time than growing from seeds, and you will see your bonsai grow to its full potential quite quickly. During this stage, it is already possible to see the structure of the tree, so the cutting of unnecessary branches will be a simple task.

Growing Bonsai Out of Cuttings

For anyone new to bonsai, growing from cuttings is the easiest way to start, unless you prefer to buy ready-made bonsai at a bonsai nursery. The best part of this option is that the most crucial stage of bonsai cultivation is over. However, it may be difficult to cut the tree unless you know exactly how you want to grow the tree.

Preparing the Cuttings

When making a bonsai cut, it is best to make the cut at the bottom or end of the butt. Cut below the knot and make the cut approximately 3/4 of an inch above the knot. This technique has two purposes. First, that makes it simple for you to distinguish the top of the cut from the bottom of the cut while handling it. It also helps cut in two different ways. Every time the bonsai is cut on the knot, the part of the branch above that knot will die down to the top knot. So if you leave the half leg under the lower knot, it will die anyway. Having this part of the deadwood underground is not a good idea. It is just a place to hide from insects and diseases.

Benefits of Proper Cutting

The cut is made 3/4 inch above the knot so that the 3/4 inch section of the shank above the knot protects the top knot. That prevents the sprouts from being damaged during handling and planting. You can press the pieces without hurting the buds. Rooting the cuttings in this way helps to place the cuttings on top of the angled pieces. That removes water from the end of the cut and helps reduce the chance of the tree getting sick. Once you have made all your cuts, dip the bottom of the pieces into a rooting pot. Make sure you have the right stable root complex for cutting bonsai. Arrange them with equal butt ends and tie them in bundles.

Ensure Regular Watering

bonsai watering

Water it regularly, but don’t moisten the soil too much, as it may rot. In a few weeks, the cuttings will begin to emerge. Some may collapse because they don’t have enough roots to support the plant. Others will develop their roots when they come out. By fall, the surviving pieces should be well-rooted. You can plant it as soon as you want, or you can wait until the rainy season.

Conclusion

Spray parts with anti-dry fluids to help root. Pieces will retain moisture if sprayed and dried before cutting. Cuttings should always be taken early in the morning to avoid water stress.

Bonsai Care, Bonsai General Info, Bonsai Tree Care Basics

How To Grow Bonsai Trees From Harvested Wild Plants

Collecting a tree from nature is a cheaper alternative to buying one. If you’re interested in knowing how to collect a tree from nature the proper way, continue reading this article! 

Gardeners should take the tree in the early stages of spring, and they should take a reasonable amount of the plant’s soil with it if possible.

Step 1: The first step is to remove any vegetation around the plant to ensure that you are only taking the tree home with you. 

Step 2: The second step is to make a circular trench about 2 feet in diameter around the tree. Try to damage the smaller roots as little as possible. 

Step 3: The third step is to dig under the root mass to free the tree from the surrounding land. 

Step 4: The fourth step is to moisten the root clump. This will keep the tree healthy on your journey home.

Step 5: The next step is to wrap the root clump in plastic to not let any moisture escape.

Once You’re Home

Once you get home, the first step is to cut away the plastic on the root ball so you can access the roots easily.

The second step is to cut away the very obvious dead or rotting roots. You don’t want root rot to fill up your tree!

The next step is to place the tree in an oversized pot. Cover up the roots with bonsai soil and cover all air pockets. Water well and allow for a year of rest before beginning bonsai training.

Tips and tricks for caring for and keeping your Bonsai tree healthy

The tree must be moved to its permanent home immediately, as the tree will need time to recover from being removed from its original home. It may take several seasons for the plant to recover fully. Only experienced bonsai owners should take a tree from the wild; more often than not, novices who have no idea what they’re doing will kill the tree by accident. 

Growers are advised to proceed with caution, as removing a tree from the wild can cause permanent defects. Gardeners should review plants carefully before proceeding with this process. 

Gardeners should study the roots of the tree that they are planning to rehome, as root formation takes a lot of time and effort. You should look for roots that extend in all directions; do not choose a tree that requires a ton of rootwork. 

Young trees can easily be shaped into any shape the gardener desires; more mature and thicker trees will not be able to move as freely. 

Gardeners should also choose trees that have a large number of branches, as this will allow them to be more creative through pruning. Trees with more branches also look a lot better and healthier than those with sparse branches.

Growers should watch for discolored or yellow leaves, as these may be signs of infection. 

In conclusion, here are the key things a grower needs to do to care for a wild bonsai tree. Investigate the tree before planting, transport the tree the right way, check the roots as well as the leaves very well, take young trees with numerous branches, and maintain it well!

Summary

Let’s go over the procedure to remove a wild bonsai and place it in your home. First, you need to remove the vegetation surrounding the tree. Then you need to create a trench 2 feet in diameter around the plant. You will then need to remove the plant from the soil, trying to spare all of the smaller roots. You will then need to moisten the roots in order to ensure it will be healthy and happy on your ride home. You should wrap the roots in plastic to keep all of the moisture locked in. Once you get home, you will need to cut open the plastic and place the bonsai in an oversized pot. Let the tree rest for at least 1 year before beginning bonsai training, as the tree will need this time to recover from being repotted. Overall, bonsai can be very rewarding if you take good care of them. If you follow these steps, you’re on the correct path to success!

Bonsai General Info, Bonsai Species

How Big Do Bonsai Trees Get?

Despite popular belief, bonsai are not genetically dwarfed trees. Instead, they are housed in small containers to limit their size and nutrient intake. There are many factors that can keep the tree small, but there are also some ways to make the tree bigger than an average bonsai. How big a bonsai can get depends on the species, size classification, the grower’s pruning techniques, and more. Many bonsai are famous for being very large or very small. We will be talking about some of these famous bonsai, as well as how to get your bonsai to be very big or very small.

Bonsai Size Classifications

Originally, bonsai classifications were derived from how many men were needed in order to lift the tree. While the purpose of bonsai is to grow a tree that resembles nature as closely as possible, the smaller the bonsai gets, the less it depicts nature. Smaller bonsai are considered more abstract. 

Keshitsubo – Between one and three inches in length, Keshitsubo is the smallest classification of bonsai. These trees rarely grow more than a few inches tall. They are referred to as being poppy seed sized. 

Shito – The second smallest bonsai classification is not much bigger than the smallest. These trees are between two and four inches tall. Their nickname, thimble bonsai, stems from the fact that the containers they are housed in are no bigger than a thimble. 

Mame – Mame, meaning ‘bean’ in Japanese, refers to the small size of these bonsai. These trees are also commonly called the palm bonsai. While these trees are generally between four and eight inches, Mame can also be put into this category if it can fit into the palm of your hand. 

Shohin – Shohin bonsai are five to eight inches tall. These trees can also be identified as Shohin if they can fit in your hand, not just the palm of your hand. They are often confused with the Mame classification. 

Komono – These trees grow between six and ten inches tall. They are some of the largest trees you can pick up with one hand. 

Katade-mochi – At ten to eighteen inches tall, these trees are the largest bonsai that can be carried with one hand. Many of the most common bonsai are in this group because they aren’t too big and they aren’t too small. 

Chumono / Chiu – These two types of bonsai are technically different, but virtually the same in size. They grow between sixteen and thirty six inches tall.

Omono / Dai – Both of these bonsai are in the four hand category. Growing anywhere from thirty to forty-eight inches tall, they are both very similar bonsai. 

Hachi-uye – As one of the biggest bonsai out there, they require six hands to carry them. They can grow from forty to sixty inches in length. 

Imperial – The biggest bonsai classification of all is the Imperial bonsai. At sixty to eighty inches tall, they are considered eight handed bonsai because four people are needed to move them.

How Pruning Affects Size

Pruning is one of the biggest aspects of bonsai growing. This involves pinching or cutting away leaves and branches. Usually, leaves and needles can be pinched off, while branches should be cut off very carefully. 

When leaves are pruned consistently, their size decreases. Additionally, if all of the leaves are pruned off a branch, leaves will not grow on that branch the following year. The lack of leaves can make the tree look smaller, while luscious growth will make the tree look larger. 

Cutting off branches is another way to make the bonsai smaller. This should be done with great consideration to the tree’s style. Additionally, if you would like your bonsai to stay a bit larger, you should leave some branches longer.

How Container Size Affects Bonsai Size

As a general rule, the bigger the container, the larger your tree will be able to grow. So, if you would like your tree to grow bigger than average, repot the bonsai in a bigger container. Or, if you would like your tree to be smaller, plant it in a slightly smaller container. When your bonsai is housed in a smaller container, be sure that your tree’s roots will still be able to stretch. 

Each and every bonsai tree is different, but they can be categorized by size. Some bonsai can be very large, while others can be the size of your finger! They can grow anywhere from one to eighty inches tall. There are also ways you can make the tree larger, by letting the leaves and branches grow out. Bonsai come in every size and shape, so it is up to you to choose which one you would like to grow!

Bonsai Care, Bonsai Species, Bonsai Trees For Sale, Outdoor Bonsai Trees

How To Care For A Bald Cypress Bonsai Tree

The Bald Cypress is one of the most fascinating shade trees in nature. It has many potential benefits, including conservation of the soil, protection of the soil’s humus content, prevention of erosion, and shade, to name but a few!

It is important to know how to care for this wonderful tree. In this article, we will examine the various steps and strategies to nurture the Bald Cypress to maturity.

Bald Cypress Bonsai Description and General Information

The Bald Cypress is generally a tall tree. Its bark is a reddish-brown color, and its leaves are needle-shaped. These leaves develop an auburn color in the fall prior to dropping to the ground.

This tree is native to Central America and the southern United States. It grows abundantly in Guatemala, Mexico, and the US states of California, New Mexico, Arizona, and Texas. Outside these areas, it is mainly found in zoos, parks, and botanical gardens. In nature, the tree grows to a maximum height of around 35 meters (100 feet).

How to Care for a Bald Cypress Bonsai Tree

Below are the steps you should take to care for the Bald Cypress Bonsai tree:

Positioning Your Bald Cypress Bonsai

Generally speaking, this is a tree that thrives in the outdoor environment. If you have to keep it indoors, this should only be for a limited duration of time. Never keep it indoors during the natural dormancy period as that is when it requires plenty of sunshine to germinate above the soil.

During its formative or germination stages, the tree requires plenty of warmth and light. For that requirement to be fulfilled, you have to place it in full sun. If the germination happens in the winter, you should place it indoors and protect it from frost.

Watering Your Bald Cypress Bonsai

Its water needs vary with the seasons. The needs peak in the summer months, due to the extremely high temperatures and the similarly higher rates of evaporation. You should thus make sure that you supply sufficient amounts of water at such times. Preferably, you should place the tree on top of a shallow bowl filled with water.

Fertilizing Your Bald Cypress Bonsai

The Bald Cypress requires fertilizer to thrive and grow to its full extent. You should furnish the fertilizer in the spring and early winter; never fertilize your tree in the fall or summer. Fertilize the tree once a week and taper the fertilizer at least once a week or more in the springtime.

Pruning & Wiring Your Bald Cypress Bonsai

Like any other tree, the Bald Cypress has to be pruned in order to thrive. Wait until the new shoots have started growing laterally, then trim them using the secateurs. This should be done in the fall or early spring. Refrain from doing this too early, as early pruning might cause irreversible damage to the plant.

Training Your Bald Cypress Bonsai

To help the trees grow well and unhindered, you should adopt a variety of training methods. Below are some of the methods that have been used and consistently noted to deliver good results:

  • Tie the branches off to hold them in the desired location.
  • Cut a V-shaped notch in the ‘armpit’ to bend the branch downwards.
  • Plant the tree in a group to come up with desirable styles.
  • Cut the trunk to a desired or manageable height.

Repotting Your Bald Cypress Bonsai

With time, the trees will overgrow the pots where they are planted. Thus, they should be regularly repotted. This should happen every two years for younger trees and every three to five years for elderly ones. The exercise should be accompanied by pruning the roots.

Keep your tree’s roots as moist as possible to prevent the withering of the plant. This is an exercise that should happen in the early spring, when the rates of precipitation are high enough to maintain the desired moisture content of the soil.

Common Bald Cypress Bonsai Pests and Diseases

Like any other tree, the Bald Cypress is prone to a variety of pests and diseases. We have listed some of the most common pests and diseases below:

Root Aphids

These are aphids that attack the roots from below. Since they are invisible to the naked eye, they can only be detected by examining the leaves and the branches for the signs of drying. They can only be mitigated by seeking expert interventions. This should be done in a timely manner, as any delays may have far-reaching ramifications.

Cedar-Apple Rust

Cedar-apple rust affects those Bald Cypress trees that grow within a ½ mile radius of apple or crabapple trees. This rust is mainly transmitted by the winds that carry the spores to the Bald Cypress. To mitigate this issue, you ought to prune the leaves and the branches.

Red Spider

This is a common pest that affects indoor and outdoor Bald Cypress trees alike. The spider feeds on the foliage of the tree and is largely resistant to common pesticides. To combat it, you should think of introducing predatory mites. Examples of these include the Phytoseiulus per-similus.

Twig & Tip Blight

Twig & tip blight is a fungal infection that mainly affects the leaves and the branches of the Bald Cypress. To bring the issue under control, all you need to do is prune the affected portions of the plant. This will prevent the fungus from spreading to the other portions of the trees.

Citrus Longhorned Beetles

Native to the Koreas, Citrus Longhorned Beetles also affect this tree. They feed on the bark, the leaves, and the petioles of the trees. These beetles emerge mostly in late spring. You are advised to start early to minimize the spread of the infections to the other parts of the tree.

Conclusion

We will now examine a variety of the most popular Bald Cypress trees.

Bald Cypress – Taxodium distichum – Healthy Established Roots – 1 Gallon Trade Potted – 1 Plant by Growers Solution

This tree is healthy and hardy. Its roots are firmly anchored and well-established. Moreover, it grows healthy and strong year-round.

Bald Cypress Tree (Jumbo)

When fully-grown, this tree achieves a massive size. That makes it well able to add more shade than your ordinary Bonsai can give.

Bald Cypress Tree – Conifer Healthy Established Rooted

This is an evergreen plant that sheds all its leaves in the fall, hence the designation ‘bald.’

Bald Cypress – Taxodium distichum – 3 – Year Plant

Though this starts out as a delicate tree, it grows into an extremely tough tree able to withstand various risks.

Bald Cypress Tree Quart Pot (Taxodiun distichun)

This is by far the smallest and most compact of the trees listed here. Nonetheless, this one often lasts longer because it fully anchors itself into the ground when planted.

Bonsai General Info, Outdoor Bonsai Trees

How To Landscape With Bonsai Trees

Many famous gardens, especially imperial gardens, use potted trees in landscaping designs. Potted trees of all shapes and sizes are excellent for different landscaping environments. Potted trees should be in good health and complement the overall design of your garden.

Factors to consider when creating scenery with potted trees

Types and sizes

The different types and sizes of potted trees are the first thing to consider when incorporating them into the landscape. There are five basic styles of potted trees: raised with a consecutive trunk, raised intimate bending, tilting, half-cascade, and semi-cascade. The formal style is the best bonsai style for beginners. Selecting a younger potted plant will allow you to develop it in an empty pot and concentrate on continuous propagating and priming of one or more plants in a container. Adding young potted trees to a tiny garden will accent your garden. Maple, ficus, and willow trees that can be grown in an empty pot and even free land for a larger view can also be selected.

Theme

You should choose a subject for your scenery once you have selected the pattern and proportion of your potted shrubs. For a pleasing appearance, first arrange your trees to enhance actualization that is observable. Creating a theme that tells a story is always essential, but there is no right or wrong way to design your garden. You can also add elements that complement your potted trees, such as pottery, rocks, waterfalls, and fountains, after you have arranged your potted trees.

Maintenance of a potted forest to make a suitable scenery design

The best and healthiest potted trees should always be used in designing scenery. If a tree is not wholly prepared and shaped, it should not be placed in the landscape design.

The pots should complement the designing of scenery, since you will be adding potted trees to the plan. Tree pots vary in shape, depth, color, and material, with certain conventions governing their use. For example, you should use traditional jade pots if you intend to make a Japanese garden.

The land for developing potted trees should be able to withstand a lot of water and supplements to prevent nutrient toxicity. It should also be able to withstand excess rainwater and manure. The water used to water your potted trees should be clean and safe. You may use rainwater or tap water as long as it does not pose any risk to your trees.

Stable manure is a manure that is mostly used to provide a reasonable amount of nutrients. You should make sure that manure will benefit your potted trees; this requires a lot of research to identify manure that is helpful for a potted plant.

You should also trim and prune your potted shrubs according to the desired form. Pruning shears should be clean and sanitized to prevent diseases and molds spreading to other plants when trimming them.

You should consider adding natural elements such as rocks in landscape design. In an outdoor setting, large, clean stones with defined surfaces are usually used. Choose stones with vertical cracks, since they will help the roots of potted trees to develop. Considering these natural elements will help you determine a suitable area in your garden for the placement of potted shrubs and trees.

You should use young pieces of rocks, known as aggregates, to improve soil drainage and aeration for potted trees. These aggregate materials allow excess water to drain and will let oxygen enter the ground to feed the roots, leading to a healthy potted tree suitable for landscaping.

Conclusion

To sum up, potted trees should complement your garden’s overall design, and healthy vegetation should be developed for attractive scenery design. To become a stunning centerpiece of landscaping design, potted trees should be well watered, beautifully potted, and carefully maintained.

Bonsai Care, Indoor Bonsai Trees

How To Care For A Bonsai Tree Indoors

Indoor bonsai trees are beautiful tropical or subtropical trees that can only be kept outdoors in a few climates. Unlike outdoor bonsai, these trees do not go into dormancy in the winter. Instead, they grow consistently all year. Indoor bonsai thrive in the high, stable temperatures of a standard living room. Because of the differences between indoor and outdoor bonsai, they have different care requirements. We will be going over the basics of caring for your indoor tree, including light, humidity, watering, and fertilizing requirements.

Caring For an Indoor Bonsai

Because bonsai trees are housed in such shallow containers, they have limited nutrient and water storage. So, caring for a bonsai tree is different from caring from a regular house plant. Taking care of an indoor bonsai is also different from caring for an outdoor bonsai. Outdoor bonsai have different light needs, as well as different watering and fertilizing preferences.

Light and Humidity

Tropical and subtropical bonsai trees like lots of light and high humidity. To get the best light intensity, place your bonsai tree directly in front of a south-facing window at all times. Moving the tree even a few feet away from the window will decrease the light intensity significantly. Eventually, this will weaken and kill your tree. 

Even when your tree is in the perfect position, it may not be receiving enough light. Grow lights can help provide your tree with enough light. Leave the artificial light on for around 10 hours a day. You can leave the light on for less time during the winter if you would like to mimic the changing of the seasons, but this is optional. 

Indoor trees also like high humidity levels. This can be hard to achieve indoors, especially if you use air conditioning or heating. Filling a humidity tray with water or wet gravel and placing it under your tree will help increase humidity. You can also try misting your tree a few times a day and opening a window during the day to allow air to circulate throughout your house

Watering

bonsai watering

While every tree has different watering preferences, there are some guidelines you can follow for every bonsai. The most important rule to follow is to never water on a routine. Instead, check your indoor tree’s soil every day and water only when the soil gets slightly dry. Watering on a routine can cause you to over- or under-water your tree, both of which could kill it. 

If your bonsai’s soil is dry, it is time to water your tree. To water, get a fine nozzle watering can and fill it with water. The fine nozzle will prevent the soil from being disturbed. Water generously until water starts to drip out of the drainage holes at the bottom of the container. Then, after about 10 minutes, water once more.

Rain water is the best water you can use when watering your tree, but tap water will work just fine.

Fertilizing

bonsai care

Since indoor bonsai trees grow consistently all year, they also need to be fertilized constantly. It doesn’t really matter what kind of fertilizer you use, so long as it contains nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium. The fertilizer you use can also include other micronutrients, but nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium must be the main three elements. A balanced liquid fertilizer is recommended for indoor bonsai trees. A balanced fertilizer simply means that the ratio of nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium is 1:1:1.

Taking care of indoor bonsai trees is not as hard as one may think. Your indoor tree should be placed in a spot where it can receive lots of light, and a humidity tray can help with humidity levels. Under-watering and over-watering are big bonsai killers, but can be avoided as long as you water when the soil gets slightly dry, instead of on a routine. Fertilize with a balanced fertilizer as often as the directions suggest; usually it will be once every few weeks to a month. Once you get the hang of how to care for your tree, watering and fertilizing will become much easier. With proper care, your indoor bonsai should live a long and healthy life!

Bonsai Care, Bonsai Species, Indoor Bonsai Trees

How to Revive a Jade Bonsai with Leaves Falling Off

Jade Bonsai is currently a popular plant in many households across the world. It is quite simple to care for as it only requires minimal conditions to thrive. Jade Bonsai, scientifically called Crassula ovata, is a succulent plant species with its origin traced back to Africa. Many households have these plants in their living rooms because of their beauty and appeal. The branches are fleshy and shiny, with the leaves perfectly rounded, and the trees are quite small in size (less than five feet).

Succulent plants are usually popular for their capability to survive in harsh conditions. For instance, they can thrive well in dry areas with minimal water and sunlight exposure. However, just like all plants, they bloom best in certain optimal conditions. Failure to provide these conditions usually results in undesired consequences, such as withering of the Jade plant. Instead of the normal shedding of old leaves, the plant may start to exponentially lose leaves, a process which might eventually kill it.

Therefore, to stop your Jade Bonsai from abnormally shedding its leaves, you will first have to determine the actual cause of the problem. This usually depends on several factors such as watering, humidity levels, sunlight, temperatures, pests and diseases, soil type, and others. To fully revive the plant, you will need to implement some of the following guidelines.

Watering

The Jade Bonsai plant needs to be carefully watered to prevent any negative results. These plants require a certain amount of water to grow healthily; under-watering may imitate the conditions of a severe desert. This will result in the plant losing some, if not all, of its leaves gradually to reduce the rate of water loss during photosynthesis. Therefore, as soon as the top layer of the potting soil dries up, you should consider watering the plant. This time period usually averages between 15 to 30 days, depending on the season and environmental conditions of a place.

Similarly, over-watering the Jade Bonsai may also cause the plant to lose its leaves. Too much water makes the roots of the plant vulnerable to rotting, and the damp soil will make the leaves turn yellow and start falling off at an exponential rate. The plant may even develop soft sections on the branches and trunk. This problem requires cessation of the watering routine until the potting soil dries up; then you can resume the proper watering routine. You may also re-pot the plant altogether to a new, drier soil.

Lighting

You should also monitor the lighting environment of the plant. Limited light during the winter will cause the leaves to fall. Similarly, too much light will cause similar consequences. Jade plants require optimal lighting conditions to photosynthesize, without which they start to wither lose their leaves.

Therefore, when your house is not receiving appropriate lighting, you should move the plant near a window where it will be properly illuminated. You may also install artificial lighting systems using specialized bulbs near the Jade Bonsai plant’s pot as this will provide enough light throughout all seasons.

Temperatures

You should maintain optimal temperatures within the habitat of your Jade Bonsai. Temperatures ranging between 55 and 75 degrees Fahrenheit are healthy. Any temperature above this range might prove too warm for the survival of the plant, causing it to lose its leaves and wither. 

Similarly, temperatures below this range might be too cold for the plant. Therefore, to prevent your plant from losing its leaves, you will always need to pay attention to the temperature, making sure it does not deviate from the provided range. You may even employ artificial equipment such as fans and radiators to control the heat level.

Pests

Just like other plants, the Jade Bonsai is usually susceptible to pests. Some of these include mealybugs and aphids, which usually affect the plant in different ways. For instance, some of these pests usually feed on the leaves, deforming them and causing them to fall. Also, some of these pests leave behind secretions, which usually promote the growth of mold and fungus on the plant. 

Therefore, to safely revive your plant, you will need to remove these pests by carefully using a cotton/paintbrush with rubbing alcohol. If this is inconvenient, you may introduce parasitic pests like ladybirds to consume the damaging pests. Finally, you may use carefully selected insecticides to kill the pests. However, this is sometimes a harmful process and thus not recommended.

Care Products

Some of these plants also wither due to the products used on them. Some individuals apply leaf shine products on their plant or even clean the leaves using household cleaning detergents and chemicals.

These products are very harmful to your plant, and continued use will result in the loss of leaves. Therefore, under no circumstance should you use these chemicals and products on your plant.

In conclusion, properly knowing the root cause of the problem to your Jade Bonsai is vital as a first step in reviving your plant. You may then follow any of the guidelines provided depending on the cause of the problem. Within no time, your plant will again be thriving and healthy, lighting up your room and environment.

Bonsai Species, Outdoor Bonsai Trees

Best Outdoor Deciduous Bonsai Tree

Bonsai trees are a variety of trees that mature when the tree is still tiny. Due to their sensitive nature, these trees are best grown in small containers and require specialized attention. Bonsai trees are classified into two major groups: indoor and outdoor. Deciduous bonsai trees fall into the outdoor group. These outdoor bonsai are identified by the shedding of leaves during the winter. During the winter, outdoor deciduous bonsai trees are kept outside so that the cold weather can help them undergo a dormancy period.

Caring for and maintaining an outdoor deciduous bonsai tree is an art that produces magnificent natural beauty and a deep connection to nature. The following are the recommended steps that one should follow to care for a bonsai tree.

Location

As the name suggests, outdoor deciduous bonsai trees should be planted in small pots outside where they can fully access changes in the weather.

Watering

Watering your deciduous bonsai tree should be a careful process. You should use enough water to satisfy your bonsai tree but not so much as to drown the plant.

Fertilizers

Fertilizing your deciduous bonsai tree is essential and should be done once a month. Because the bonsai tree is planted in a small pot with only a little soil, you should apply fertilizer with caution. During the winter, do not apply fertilizer, since the outdoor deciduous bonsai tree requires no nutrients during this season.

Repotting

It is advisable to move your outdoor deciduous bonsai tree to a new environment once in a while. This is because the nutrients in the soil cannot last for long and depreciate with time.

Types of Outdoor Deciduous Bonsai Tree

There are several common varieties of outdoor deciduous bonsai tree grown across the world, including the following:

Maple Trees

Like the Elm bonsai tree, the maple tree has many species and varieties. The most common species of maple bonsai trees are the Japanese and trident maple tree. The maple tree was initially grown in Japan and is among the best outdoor deciduous bonsai grown today. Due to its low cost of maintenance, this maple tree is ideal for bonsai beginners. This tree has two distinct characteristics:

1. When young, the bark of this deciduous bonsai tree is green or red; both colors will turn grayish as the maple bonsai tree ages.

2. The maple tree has a predictable growth pattern. From May to the end of June, a cluster of yellowish flowers will form.

Ginkgo Trees

The ginkgo bonsai tree is an outdoor deciduous bonsai tree associated with the Chinese and Japanese cultures. The oldest naturally-growing ginkgo tree, located in China, is more than 40 meters tall and approximately 4000 years old. This bonsai tree is dioecious, meaning that there are both female and male varieties. The seed of the ginkgo bonsai tree is edible and is very popular in East Asia. The grain and leaf extracts from this tree are medicinal and are used to treat dementia.

Apricot Bonsai Trees

The Japanese grew apricot trees for their beautiful flowers and edible fruit. This bonsai tree is renowned for its hardy nature that can tolerate deep freezing temperatures. Apricot outdoor deciduous bonsai trees are also known to flower at the end of every winter, and the fruit ripens at the beginning of summer. Apricot trees have a definite life span of about nine years, and they grow to a height of about seventeen to eighteen inches.

Elm Bonsai Trees

The Chinese Elm bonsai species is one of the most popular elm varieties in East Asia. Though this tree can grow to a height of sixty-five feet in its natural habitat, it is a favorite of bonsai growers. It has a predictable growth pattern and does not dry quickly, even when poorly pruned. It is also semi-deciduous, meaning that it can grow well either indoors or outdoors; it is a good choice for bonsai beginners.

Conclusion

Outdoor deciduous bonsai tree planting is mostly practiced in East Asia, but it is spreading slowly to other continents. This process is an art form that connects a person to nature, and the result is beautiful. Outdoor deciduous bonsai trees can be planted for their beauty as well as their medicinal properties, and when they are well taken care of, they can last for generations.

Bonsai General Info, Bonsai Supplies, Bonsai Tree Starter Kits

Best Bonsai Starter Kits

It is simply amazing how bonsai cultivators create miniature trees with uniquely-designed trunks and cascading branches. These bonsai growers manage to style different components to achieve desired designs.

However, if you are a beginner captivated by bonsai trees, you will need to get a starter kit. A bonsai starter kit contains everything that is required to grow bonsai plants from seeds. Choosing the best bonsai starter kit is not as simple as it seems, considering all the different options available in the market.

Below is an in-depth review of the top three bonsai starter kits in the market. These starter kits have top ratings and exceptional reviews. In case you are planning to start bonsai tree cultivation, then you have come to the right place.

Bonsai Overview

When most people hear the word bonsai, they think about a little tree in a small box with stones scattered around. However, bonsai means something more than a decorative tree that gives your room an Asian accent.

The word ‘bonsai’ originates from the Japanese culture and signifies growing or planting in a tray. A bonsai gardener, however, will describe it as an art with the sole purpose of cultivating life. Bonsai cultivation includes a wide range of trees, plants, and stones.

The Japanese art of suiseki (an ancient study of stones that perceives them as objects of beauty) and the Chinese art of penjing (the art of landscaping) were combined to create and grow bonsai trees. Although the art of bonsai originated in China, it was exported to Japan and perfected there.

Top Three Bonsai Starter Kits

Planters’ Choice Bonsai Starter Kit

This is a complete starter kit that lets you grow four bonsai trees from seeds. The Planters’ Choice Bonsai Starter Kit contains everything that is required to produce a Black Poul, Flame Tree, Rocky Mountain Bristlecone Pine, and Norway Spruce.

bonsai starter kit

The Planter’s Choice starter kit also includes expanding soil disks, bonsai clippers, biodegradable growing pots, bamboo plant markers, and an extensive growing instructional kit. Beginners benefit from this starter kit because the seeds are stored in vials, known as seed-safes, that guarantee they will germinate.

The Planter’s Choice Bonsai starter kit includes a satisfaction guarantee if you are not completely satisfied with the purchase. This is a great bonsai starter kit that is designed for both beginners and experts in the field.

Ashbrook Outdoors Bonsai Starter Kit

When you are looking for a complete bonsai starter kit, then the Ashbrook Outdoors Starter Kit is a great choice. It is a 43-piece starter pack with bonsai trays, biodegradable bonsai pots, eight separate kinds of tree seeds, bonsai soil discs, plant markers, pruning shears, an instructional booklet, and much more.

The advantage of this bonsai starter kit is that you get to enjoy cultivating different trees. The manual is extensive and will go a long way in ensuring you get the best results. You can start cultivating at any time of the year.

This product also includes a satisfaction guarantee, which always comes in handy. This kit is an excellent option for beginners because you get eight different trees to sharpen your skills.

Tinyroots Bonsai Starter Tool Kit

If you are a new bonsai grower, the Tinyroots Bonsai Starter Tool Kit is a great option. This starter kit comes in a compact bamboo box with a lovely design. It is commonly referred to as the anti-intimidation kit, since it contains all the information and equipment needed for first-timers to grow bonsai.

You’ll receive traditional butterfly bonsai shears, a traditional figurine, and aluminum wires. Included in this box are a seaweed fertilizer and Neptune’s Harvest Fish to get you started with an extensive fertilization program.

Who Needs the Best Bonsai Starter Kit?

You’ll need the best bonsai starter kit if you want to cultivate bonsai from scratch. These kits are ideal for beginners who are fascinated by the art of bonsai tree growing and want to try it out. All these kits have an extensive instructional booklet that comes in handy when you want to learn how to cultivate bonsai without fear!

Conclusion

Bonsai tree cultivation is not as simple as it seems, and you will need to exercise a lot of patience and discipline. All the best bonsai starter kits include an instructional manual that will help you understand everything about your new bonsai trees.