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Caring for Bonsai from China and Japan


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Every home should have a bonsai plant or two, but how do you care for these mysterious plants from Asia?
Bonsai plants cultivated in Japan or China require special care and treatment to grow effectively. Bonsai plants form miniature trees and shrubs. As these plants age, with care and direction, they become valuable and graceful.

If you are not yet be ready to start you own bonsai from scratch, that should not stop you from purchasing a bonsai tree. These plants exude an elegant beauty that alone can enhance any room. And they will provide years of calmness to your life as you direct the growth of your plant. So it is important that you understand how these plants are cared for.

The bonsai trees or shrubs from Japan and China require water, fertilization, sunlight, mist, etc. To help you learn a few steps in caring for your bonsai let's start with watering your plant.

How to water bonsai:  The soil for Bonsai trees is designed to drain quickly. Why? Because roots are routinely trimmed, they do not tolerate water as well as your common houseplants. Additionally, bonsai typically require less soil than common houseplants. Because the trees drain quickly, bonsai require more frequent watering. But the exact amount of water you pour in and how often will be infuenced by the soil, light, location, and weather condition, and average temperature the plant is dealing with.

A key to determining how you water is to focus on the foliage. If the tree feels light after testing the moisture content of the soil, the tree will need water. You can purchase a water meters to test soil moisture to help maintain your bonsai plant.

Bonsai like all houseplants require fertilizer. Again, since bonsai have less soil to draw nutrients from, you will need to fertilize the plant often. During the spring you can lightly fertilize your bonsai, however during the fall season you will want to increase this feeding. What kind of fertilizer should you use for the healthiest growth of your bonsai? Look for fertilizers that contain potash, nitrogen, chelated iron, and phosphoric acids. The use of Superthrive Vitamins and Hormones - 4 oz., a vitamin and plant hormone tonic/supplement is highly recomended as well. Before you add any fertilizer, be sure that you water your bonsai first.
Japanese Kingsville Boxwood Bonsai Tree  (buxus microphylla compacta)

Japanese Kingsville Boxwood Bonsai Tree (buxus microphylla compacta)

Native to Japan the Kingsville Boxwood is an extremely slow growing tree. It has the smallest leaf of all Boxwoods which is why it is sought after for bonsai. The Kingsville Boxwood is an evergreen tree with light green leaves and has excellent branching characteristics. A great indoor bonsai tree recommended by the Brooklyn Botanical Gardens.




Most Bonsai trees require direct sunlight. The sunlight should come from south, west, and east for the best results. During winter months, you can use indoor growing light, but bonsai grow best with natural light. Misting your bonsai tree is a good idea as well. Japanese and Chinese bonsai trees can handle humidity beyond what we can stand indoors. You can purchase a tray, and add water at the bottom, set your bonsai pot into the tray. Doing this will raise the humidity around the plant. Be sure to add a layer of gravel at the bottom of the tray so that the pot isn't sitting directly in the water. This will help prevent root rot.

How to trim your bonsai:  Trimming and pruning bonsai is your way of shaping and creating unique forms. This is one area where your artistic temperament comes into play. There is a symmetry in this work as you want the amount of growth of the root system to be consistent or match the growth above ground. Form and shape the bonsai to your liking, matching it to your personality and surroundings. You will need sharp shears or scissors to trim your tree. Light branches and foliage is best removed with shears designed to handle bonsai pruning and trimming. Concave cutters are ideal if you have heavier shrub growth. In fact, if all you have are the cutters that will be adequate for most of the trimming you will perform on your bonsai trees.

Bonsai trees need to be watched over. To keep you bonsai tree healthy, reduce insect infestations from and prevent illness provide plenty of sunlight and ventilation. Clean your plant often, dusting the leaves. And remove any debris in the soil, such as fallen leaves.

Chosing a bonsai soil:  The Bonsai soil you use to plant your bonsai in depends upon the species of tree or plant you are working with. There is specialized soil for conifers ( Bonsai Conifer Soil Mix - 2 lbs. ) as well a tropical and subtropical species ( Tropical/Subtropical Mix Bonsai Soil 10 lbs. ). And there are other specialized soil mixtures ( Professional Bonsai Soil - 2 lbs. (1 Qt.)).

When adding soil to a planted bonsai, be sure to shield the drainage openings. At some point you will need to repot your bonsai tree. Even though these are dwarf trees, they will get bigger and outgrow their currant containers. Therefore, you will be purchasing new pots as needed. When you see that the tree is becoming larger than the pot, it is time to transfer it to a larger container. Give your bonsai room to grow over the many years that it will be a part of your life.


News About Japanese Bonsai Trees


Hawaii Tribune Herald

Beauty, power in small package: Bonsai, other Japanese art forms heighten senses at Wailoa Center
Hawaii Tribune Herald
Aman fished for koi beneath the spreading branches of a Japanese garden juniper, a few yards away from a blooming azalea tree. There were more juniper nearby, along with Chinese elm, golden cypress and ficus. But none of them were more than 2 feet tall ...



Eurosport.co.uk

Origami boats, bonsai trees and samurai – Welcome to Lukas Podolski in Japan
Eurosport.co.uk
Lukas Podolski might be one of Le Buzz's favourite footballers with his positive outlook on life and hammer of a left foot. ADVERTISING. inRead invented by Teads. With honours in Germany, England and Turkey, not to mention internationally, Podolski is ...
Lukas Podolski adapts to life in Japan by eating bratwurst with chopsticksESPN FC (blog)
Lukas Podolski shows he loves Japanese cultureFourFourTwo

all 12 news articles »


York Daily Record/Sunday News

Master gardening: Bonding with bonsai
York Daily Record/Sunday News
Bonsai has become synonymous with Japan and many people new to bonsai believe that the plants must look like the ones illustrated in books or featured in movies like "The Karate Kid." The belief exists that bonsai are specialized plants and only these ...



Who Ate All The Pies

Bonsai And Beyond: Lukas Podolski Immerses Himself In Japanese Culture After Joining Vissel Kobe (Video)
Who Ate All The Pies
After two seasons with Galatasaray, Lukas Podolski has moved on to pastures new by signing a pension-boosting deal to join Japanese top flight side Vissel Kobe. To prepare for life in a new country, Podolski has immersed himself in Japanese culture ...



SCVTV (press release) (blog)

Library of Congress | LOC | Bonsai: Another Special Gift of Trees from Japan
SCVTV (press release) (blog)
In 1976, Japan presented 53 bonsai trees to the United States as a Bicentennial gift. The trees led to the founding of the National Bonsai and Penjing Museum at the U.S. National Arboretum, which was later augmented by bonsai from China, North America ...



WalesOnline

The ordinary Welsh house with an absolutely incredible secret around the back
WalesOnline
From there his fascination with the plants has continued to grow, fuelled by a trip to Japan and China. Don said: “I visited Japan and China and I just fell in love with the culture of the bonsai. My bonsai are my pride and joy. “If you go through the ...

and more »


Bangalore Mirror

Ladies First
Bangalore Mirror
These medicinal trees were brought to Japan from China around 7 AD, which then developed into bonsai in Japan. Or for that matter, 500 words in the Japanese language are derived from Tamil. “I was surprised when I came to know this,” he said. Aso!



Smile Politely - Champaign-Urbana's Online Magazine

Japan House hosting annual Matsuri festival on August 27th
Smile Politely - Champaign-Urbana's Online Magazine
Enjoy Japanese food and drink, taiko drum performances by Ho Etsu Taiko, Masaji Terasawa, the CANDYMAN!, obon dancers, martial arts demos, cosplay and yukata dressing, tea ceremonies, Ikebana displays, Bonsai demonstrations, Japanese armor, face ...



KCET

How Migration Shaped Southern California's Gardens
KCET
... when Japan as a nation-state came to the big World's Fairs in Chicago, and San Diego, and San Francisco, and elsewhere, and showed beautiful displays of Japanese gardens, and bonsai, and flower arranging, thereby really whetting an Anglo-American ...



Obon Festival shares Japanese culture with county
Camarillo Acorn
When they weren't eating or dancing, visitors were treated to other demonstrations of Japanese culture, including bonsai (tiny tree cutting), taiko (drums) and traditional martial arts (judo and karate). Also taking place was a cosplay competition ...

and more »

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