The Garden Community for Garden Lovers
 

Wiltshire, United Kingdom Gb

Help! I was given a Bonsai Tree for my birthday, and I have no idea what to do with it now. Its branches have grown since I've had it. Should I cut them back, it is four years old apparently.



Sdc13206

Answers

 

Have a look under B at the bottom of the page. Click on Bonsai, then scroll right down to the blogs and questions and you may find some help there?

14 Apr, 2012

 

Almost impossible to keep im afraid. It will almost certainly get dried out and if that happens once, it's very hard to get them back again. They will need watering 2 or 3 times a day in the summer months.

14 Apr, 2012

 

Oh lord! Do what I did with mine when someone gave me one for Christmas last year - I passed it on to a bonsai loving friend within 2 days... I can't stand the blasted things, I'm not into torturing plants, and they're difficult and time consuming to keep. Alright if you like it as a hobby, but not for me - its in the same box as growing the largest marrow or leek... You'll probably find it'll be a male friend who might like it, seems to be principally a male hobby.

14 Apr, 2012

 

Oh dear, that doesnt sound very hopeful. I have an Alpine trough and its in a fairly shady spot so doesnt dry out too much, was wondering if I would put it there and hope for the best. Can't really give it away as its a close family member that gave it to me. Don't think they would take too kindly to that. So better let it take a chance.

14 Apr, 2012

 

Ah, well in that case, you'd better. But you should keep it in its current container outside, or a similar, larger bonsai container rather than a larger trough - if you put it in a normal container, it won't remain a bonsai for long. Trim it over to maintain its shape, taking off any longer growths. Will need watering daily, possibly twice a day, in summer.

14 Apr, 2012

 

Thanks Bamboo. Will do my best .

14 Apr, 2012

 

its a shame when well meaning family/friends buy us plant lovers plants and get it so wrong. I too have had similar problems in the past Cinders. But put out side over winter will probably kill it as it has such a small rootstock. Bamboo's suggestion seems about the best.

14 Apr, 2012

 

I'm not sure what this one is, but according to my Bonsai book (yes, another present from a well meaning friend, oh dear) outdoor ones must be outside for 10 months of the year, in a shadyish spot, but brought under cover if its exceptionally cold. I think this is an outdoor one...

14 Apr, 2012

 

Well I have just given it a trim and put it on my alpine trough in the shady part. I will do my best to make sure it doesnt dry out, and probably put it in a cold greenhouse during the coldest part of winter. If it lives all well and good, but if it doesnt then at least I tried.

Thanks very much for trying to help, which you did do.

14 Apr, 2012

 

You have an indoor bonsai. You can trim the growth back to keep the shape that you want. It can go outside from late May till late August, weather permitting.

I have 2 of them and they are a bit of a bore care wise, but put them in a sink then fill with warmish water till it just goes over the pot and let it soak for a minute then put it back on saucer it came with Do that every week and water if looking dry and it will be fine. A west facing window is ideal, south facing will make it too dry. They do look nice though.

14 Apr, 2012

 

Oh thank you Kildermorie, I'd better go and bring it back indoors then before it gets too chilled.

14 Apr, 2012

 

I've been trying to read the label in the picture, but can't - Kildermorie, what plant is it? I thought it was probably elm of some kind...

14 Apr, 2012

 

On the label it says Bonsai Zelkova, which was on the paper it came in. I wrote it on a label but not sure if it is the name of the tree or not.

14 Apr, 2012

 

I googled Bonsai Zelkova - it is a Japanese Elm. Should be outside most of the time, but needs to be hardened off if its been inside otherwise. Seems you can keep them inside, but only in a very cool area, although they do better outside, apparently. Google it yourself, Cinderella - I found a bonsai care guide for this plant quite easily...

14 Apr, 2012

 

I will do that Bamboo. Thank you so much for all your trouble.

14 Apr, 2012

 

That's okay, it's no trouble - I'm using the internet as a delaying tactic to avoid the housework...I must say, a lot less gets done around here ever since I got broadband over 2 years ago... I think I need a cleaner, lol!

14 Apr, 2012

 

I know the feeling !! I'm the same. List of jobs as long as your arm but somehow I don't want to do them.

14 Apr, 2012

 

most bonzei are outdoor and missinformation they have to stay indoors infact far from it . i agree that its torturing plants but have a friend who has 50 or so . you have to cut the roots back every year or two and shape as well as trim the tops to keep them healthy and small . yes they do need watering a lot and keeping an eye on . why dont you find a nice spot as i did with a bonzei acer i was given and let it unbonzei itself bye planting it in the ground wear you wont upset your friend and it will be easy to look after .you can still keep it trimmed back but bigger in the ground to if you want .

14 Apr, 2012

 

Thanks for that. Trouble is I dont have a lot of space for a tree - I suppose I could put it in a larger pot then it wouldnt get too big but would have more space and probably wouldnt need watering so often. Think I'll leave it as it is for the time being and see how it fares. Thanks for your input, appreciated.

14 Apr, 2012

 

Hi Cinderella! I thought it was a Chinese Elm . . . these are so often sold as indoor bonsai, but it is a TREE!! so likes to live outside. I have about 20 bonsai, and I love them . . . they are not at all difficult to look after (if they were, they wouldn't be for me). I love the fact that each year the leaves become smaller, and you can enjoy the shape of the tree at close quarters, occasionally pruning the branches to a nice shape.

Your alpine trough in a shady spot sounds ideal. So long as your tree is kept outdoors ALL YEAR ROUND, it should be easy to keep it alive. Although the books recommend yearly pruning of the roots, I sometimes miss a year, and they are fine. No particular care needed in winter, when they are dormant, but they do need watering daily or every other day in the warmer months, simply because they do not have much soil. Mine are in free-draining gritty compost. However, having said all that, I do like Noseypotter's idea!! Lots of luck . . .

14 Apr, 2012

 

Thank you Sheila, I really like what you say, and I really think I could do that. I was rather worried that I wouldnt be able to keep it alive, especially at holiday times, but am feeling happier about it now. I do have a good neighbour who I am sure would water it for me if needed. Thanks again.

14 Apr, 2012

 

Sheila do you know if they flower or not. There was no information with it./

14 Apr, 2012

 

"The Chinese Elm is one of the most common species sold as Indoor bonsai. They are sometimes wrongly called 'Zelkova' which they are not! It is one of the easiest varieties to grow and can also be grown outdoors provided the temperature does not go below minus 5 C. One of the very few species that can be used as indoor or outdoor bonsai"

http://www.herons.co.uk/-Category-697/-/-

I keep mine indoors and it stays evergreen, I assume putting it outside will make it deciduous. Up to you.

14 Apr, 2012

 

Thanks Kildermorie, appreciate your help. Will look at this site.

14 Apr, 2012

 

Btw, Happy Birthday, Cinderella!! Sorry, I've no idea if they flower . . .

14 Apr, 2012

 

Thanks Sheila, the birthday was last week !!

14 Apr, 2012

 

sheilabub is right on the money there not hard .

14 Apr, 2012

 

Just time consuming...... ?

15 Apr, 2012

 

No Cinderella . . . not even time consuming! I agnore mine for weeks at a time, lol.

Thanks Noseypotter!

15 Apr, 2012

 

Ok Sheila, that suits me fine then.

15 Apr, 2012

 

credit wear its due sheilabub . if my friend goes on holiday and its very hot he uses a big piece of polythene with some 2" bye 4" around it to make a shallow pond and puts them in there . if its hot they need watering and when they get bigger they only need come out of the pot once every couple of years for a trim and smaller ones once but i guess he gets this job done very early spring in a day and as for bending branches etc thats just personal taste . i think the biggest killer of these trees i know is from the idea they have to come indoors so do about as well as rooted xmas trees . there not my thing realy but everyone to there own . if you have hanging baskets there know harder than them infact easier as you dont have to get up to them to water them .

15 Apr, 2012

 

No, it doesn't flower, Cinderella...

15 Apr, 2012

 

Thanks Bamboo.

15 Apr, 2012

 

Glad you asked this question Cinders, as I have a few little trees I am trying to Bonsai. This answered a lot of questions for me. I suppose someone tried to think up something different for a prezzie.

17 Jun, 2012

 

Yes, my daughter gave it to me, she thought it would be something different to amuse me I think. Glad you found it helpful too. I have my little tree outdoors now, and it has made a lot of growth and with all the rain we have been having I haven't needed to water it every day !!

17 Jun, 2012

How do I say thanks?

Answer question

 


Not found an answer?