Bonsai has become an integral part of indoor gardening. An increasing number of growers want their homes or office decorated with these amazing miniature versions of plants. Moreover, the art of creating Bonsai is considered to have meditative and stress-reduction effects. Experts mention that the art of making bonsai is so engaging that the plant is believed to be useful for remedying mental illness and other adverse conditions.
It is the perfect addition for your indoor patch of greens and even in the office. However, these plants require care, attention, and technique to grow into the mini tree that they are meant to be. If you are planning to grow a Bonsai for your indoor garden, then there are some essential tips that you should follow.
The Japanese term Bonsai means something that is planted in a container. The art of making Bonsai originated in Japan and dates back to the 14th century. Royals and aristocrats of the society engaged in making Bonsai, which reflected their elite class and status in society. Today, growing Bonsai has become one of the most popular art forms.
It might look like that having a Bonsai can involve strenuous maintenance tricks. However, the case is not so, caring for Bonsai trees can be easy if some of the essential factors are considered. Go through this article to know about all the tips and tricks to grow a stunning indoor Bonsai.
Tips and Tricks for Bonsai Care
There are a few factors, which have to be considered for the Bonsai to grow into a beautiful miniature tree. These factors are crucial and if you can maintain them carefully, then you will have a perfectly grown Bonsai tree indoors. Let us look at these factors as follows.
Positioning the Bonsai Tree
This crucial factor has to be considered so that the plant is exposed to the ideal temperature and light. The right location of the Bonsai in the indoor space can be identified with the help of the following steps.
- The positioning of the Bonsai tree depends on the type of tree it is. Moreover, whether the plant is an indoor or an outdoor species also matters
- Outdoor Bonsai trees include pine, spruce, and juniper. They are required to be placed in a space that receives indirect light and has proper ventilation. They have to be exposed to all the natural seasons.
- Tropical or subtropical trees form indoor Bonsai. Some of the famous indoor Bonsai trees include jade and ficus trees.
- Once you know the type of the plant, place it accordingly with optimum light and humidity, as the trees need moist soil.
You must be careful of some of the effective ways in which the Bonsai should be watered to ensure that the plant grows perfectly. Let us look at the steps to water the indoor Bonsai.
- One of the most widespread causes behind a Bonsai dying is that the plant is under-watered. This is because the Bonsai is kept in a container with a shallow layer of soil that results in very fast drying of the soil.
- Hence, it is recommended to water the Bonsai as soon as the topmost soil dries out.
- The watering schedule also depends on the size and the type of Bonsai tree that you have.
- Moreover, the type of soil also determines the frequency of the watering schedule in a day.
- Therefore, it is recommended to not set any routine for watering the plants. You should check about the Bonsai type, its needs and requirements as a tree and then water it accordingly.
- It is crucial to remember while watering the tree one should ensure that the complete root system is saturated with water. You can do this by watering the plant unless the water leaks through the drainage hole in the pot.
- You can attach a tray or a dish below the container to facilitate proper drainage by the soil of the Bonsai. This keeps the excess water in the tray.
- It is also important to know that overwatering can equally harm the tree. Some of the early signs of overwatering include yellow leaves and the shriveling of the small-sized branches.
- Overwatering and poor drainage can lead to waterlogging, which further cuts the oxygen supply to the root system and stuns the growth of the tree. This can also lead to root rot.
- Balance is the key. Therefore, to understand the right amount of water needed by the tree, constantly monitor it and water it as soon as the top layer of the soil dries up.
Shaping Your Bonsai
A Bonsai is all about shape. It is a miniature form of a tree and is grown by pruning and pinching the tree so that it grows into a defined or controlled shape and size. The process of pruning helps in maintaining the shape of the plant. There are two types of pruning, which the plant goes through known as maintenance pruning and structural pruning. Let us look at the tips related to pruning the Bonsai.
- The primary purpose of maintenance pruning is to accelerate the growth of the plant. It involves trimming the shoots and leaves in the upper portion of the plant so that the foliage underneath gets the required light and air to grow and result in a strong and healthy Bonsai.
- Maintenance pruning is done to the leaves, buds, and branches of the Bonsai. When the branches are pruned, smaller branches replace them. This confirms the desired shape of the tree.
- When you prune the buds, results in more compact foliage with smaller leaves.
- You should understand the right time to prune the tree when it shapes out. Moreover, Bonsai that produces flowers should be pruned in spring so that the following spring can observe increased growth of flowers.
- Structural pruning refers to the pruning of a dormant tree by removing its structural branches. It cannot be done without professional help.
- Branch wiring is another method to keep the plant in shape. In this method, a thin wire is wrapped around the branches whose growth has to be restricted. However, it is important to make sure that the wire does not sit into the growing branches and scar them.
Right Soil for Bonsai
It is essential to choose the right kind of soil for the Bonsai. Let us look at some of the important pointers to keep in mind while choosing the Bonsai soil.
- One of the mandatory features for Bonsai soil is that the soil should have proper drainage facilities.
- It is recommended to add larger particles to the soil mix like stones, volcanic pebbles so that the soil can facilitate proper drainage with improved aeration.
- The perfect soil mix for growing Bonsai shall also be able to hold water and this can be done by adding clay to the mix.
- Bonsai trees also require fertilizers for nutrients so that they can grow healthy. It is recommended that the fertilizer meant for Bonsai should have equal proportions of nitrogen, potassium, and phosphorus.
- Before starting the fertilization process make sure that the plant has been watered as adding fertilizers to dry soil can be harmful.
- It is safer to go through the fertilization manual to avoid over-fertilization.
Repotting the Bonsai
Repotting the Bonsai is necessary as it helps in maintaining the tree’s health. Its primary purpose is the removal of the extra root system, which can hamper the growth of the tree. Moreover, repotting is also necessary to ensure that the tree grows well in a small container. It is advised to repot the Bonsai once in 2 to 5 years. Let us look at the essential steps for repotting the Bonsai.
- Begin with the removal of the tree from the old container.
- Use a sharp object to prune the exterior root layers.
- Check the root system for any kind of rot and remove that portion of the system. Areas that have been subjected to rot also indicate the soil portion not being able to drain the water.
- Clean the container and remove any kind of spots.
- Now, place the net or the mesh inside the container to cover the drainage holes. This ensures that the soil does not fall out through the drainage holes.
- Next, the bottom of the container or the pot should be layered with the soil mix.
- Place the tree on top of it.
- It is crucial to note that the remaining gaps and holes shall be filled up for a fine repotting procedure.
The above-mentioned steps shall help you to grow a perfectly fine Bonsai to brighten up the indoor space of your house or office. It is crucial to understand that the essence of gardening or growing plants is balance, patience, and care. You have to check up on the tree constantly for watering and pruning purposes. Moreover, pests or any other diseases might also infect the plant. Therefore, you must take proper care of the Bonsai till it grows into the desired shape and size.