The Fukien tea bonsai is one of the most challenging tree varieties to sculpt. This tree presents many unique characteristics that can turn into a nightmare for beginners in bonsai cultivation. Although you need to put a lot of effort in cultivation, pruning, and maintenance, the end result is usually graceful and beautiful.
One of the things you will have to consider when it comes to Fukien tea bonsai is the soil quality. Rotting roots are a common problem associated with Fukien tea bonsai. Soggy, compacted soil will pose a huge problem, and you might never get the desired results.
Generally, Fukien tea trees prefer moist to slightly dry soil. If you want the very best results, you will need a quality soil mix for your Fukien tea bonsai. In this article, we will look at the importance of quality soil, the preferred soil mix, and when you should repot your Fukien tea bonsai.
Importance of Quality Soil in Fukien Tea Bonsai
Inferior soil will lead to no or slow growth of your Fukien tea bonsai. Your bonsai will undergo a lot of trauma and stress during pruning and shaping. Poor quality soil won’t provide the nutrition needed to bounce back from the cultivation process involved.
As stated earlier, soil without the proper drainage will also lead to the rotting of roots. The Fukien tea bonsai is particularly affected by this. Recovering rotting roots can be a complicated procedure, especially when you are a beginner. Most people usually quit and start again with a different tree, which can be devastating.
When you use low-quality soil, you will end up struggling with the speed and growth patterns of your Fukien tea bonsai. You mustn’t procure your soil from gardening stores, but instead, try a quality soil mix.
Fukien Tea’s Preferred Soil Mix
Now that you understand the importance of quality soil in cultivating Fukien tea bonsai, you need to create the perfect soil mix. You need a freely draining soil mix that consists of half inorganic and half organic soil components.
However, your Fukien tea bonsai could grow just as comfortably in a well-draining organic mix or 100% inorganic mix. You have to ensure that the soil never gets compacted, or you will end up with rotting roots.
Lastly, you need to add fertilizer weekly. Before you fertilize the soil, ensure that you water the tree well. The fertilizer should also be mixed at half the recommended dilution for the best results. Do not fertilize a sick, transplanted, or purchased Fukien tea tree.
Repotting Your Fukien Tea Bonsai
Repotting a Fukien tea bonsai should be done periodically when you notice that the root system has filled the current pot. One of the key reasons why you need to repot at this time is to ensure that your bonsai gets a fresh potting mix.
Repotting will also encourage the growth of a compact root system, which is essential in bonsai cultivation. Therefore, you need to examine your bonsai’s root system often to help you figure out when to repot.
No two trees are identical when it comes to growth patterns. When to repot will depend on the rate that your tree is growing. There is no predetermined schedule of when to repot, and you need to observe your Fukien tea bonsai carefully.
The best time to repot your Fukien tea bonsai would be around midsummer, when it is warm. It would help if you started by removing the bottom and outer quarter of the root mass. You could then either return the bonsai tree to its original pot or transfer to a new pot.
Ensure that you add sufficient soil to make up the difference created when you trim away the roots. Your plant needs to be raised to its original position after you are done repotting. Water your tree when you are done to ensure that your bonsai tree remains healthy.
Fukien tea bonsai is a fantastic tree variety that creates beautiful shapes. However, there is a lot of work needed, starting with the soil. You want a healthy rooting system that can promote speedy growth, and the right soil is your answer.