In this guide you will find all the information you need to care for and grow your bonsai in the best possible way. It will help you to understand all the topics you will need to develop, protect and maintain your miniature trees.
The most important part of caring for your Bonsai is watering. In very hot or windy weather you will need to water more frequently. The following recommendations will help you to water your Bonsai properly:
Water your Bonsai when the soil is slightly dry.
When your tree requires watering, water it abundantly, enough water is needed to soak the root ball and the entire root system. You can use your fingers to check the degree of moisture on the surface (and inside) of the soil.
Never water your trees routinely
Look at your trees individually rather than watering them on a daily routine. You will need a watering can to water your bonsai, ideally from above, in a comprehensive way to reach all parts of the tree until water comes out abundantly through the drainage holes.
Remember that spraying is spraying the leaves of the bonsai with water dispersed under pressure in the form of a fine rain. To carry out this process, use the sprayer included in our kit.
How often should I spray?
If you just want to clean the leaves, spraying the plants once a week is generally sufficient. If you want to revive a dull bonsai, spray the leaves every day.
Avoid spraying your bonsai in full sun, as this will have harmful effects on your plant.
What water should I spray with?
Rainwater and dew water are clean water, which does not contain any dissolved lime or other salts. The purer the water you spray with, the better. If you spray with water that contains a lot of lime, instead of revitalising the plants, you will clog the pores and leave white spots on the leaves.
Make sure that the roots of your bonsai are properly moistened for good watering!
Recommendations for your bonsai
If you follow these guidelines for caring for your Bonsai, you will ensure that your tree will live as long as possible and always look spectacular.
Fertilisation: Regular fertilisation of your Bonsai during the growing season is crucial for its survival. Bonsais need to be fertilised in order to renew the nutritional content of the little soil they have.
The time of year: Bonsai require much more care in seasons that favour their growth, such as winter. You will have to be more careful with the cultivation of your bonsai and avoid some things that can be a strain on it, such as transplanting in periods other than between February and March.
Pests and diseases: Like any plant they require sanitary care. There are some very common pests that you must eradicate for a healthy bonsai. Aphids, spider mites, whiteflies and mealy bugs are the most common pests on these trees.
Transplanting: The bonsai transplanting operation is vital for a tree that always lives in the pot. When the roots fill the pot, they age and work with difficulty, being able to absorb less water and compromising the viability of the tree. It is recommended to transplant every 1-2 years in young trees or trees in training, and between 3-4 years when it is already a trained tree.
Pruning and wiring: It should be borne in mind that these are miniature trees and should be pruned from time to time, just like large trees. Wiring allows the bonsai to be shaped and styled and is a technique that requires a lot of care as the tree can be injured.
Soil: Like all plants, bonsai depend on their roots to live, so we must provide them with the nutrients and water they need to be healthy. The soil must be porous and well drained to avoid flooding.
The aim of pruning is to maintain and perfect the shape of your tree. This process is known as pinching. Trees concentrate most of their growth in the upper and outer parts of the tree, so you should regularly prune these areas to stimulate growth in the lower branches and inner parts.
Don't be afraid to pinch your Bonsai, it is very important to do so, especially on the outer parts of the branches and the top of the tree.
Remove any weeds or dead leaves. Pull it out carefully, making sure not to mistreat the roots of the Bonsai.
Cut off any crossed and broken branches. Crossed branches rub against each other and leave wounds that allow pests or diseases to enter the wood. With the help of the branch cutter, trim just above the point where they protrude from the trunk.
Cut the twigs so that only 3 or 4 knots remain. The nodes are the parts of the stem from which the leaves grow. Make a clean cut just above the remaining knots with a branch cutter or concave cutter. This will prevent the tree from growing too big and promote the growth of new shoots.
After these 3 important steps, you will have a completely healthy and perfectly pruned bonsai.
This is an important process when caring for your bonsai, as it influences the growth and shape of the tree. Without good wiring there is no good Bonsai. This design technique allows the best control during formation, from trunk movement to the smallest buds.
When to wire your tree?
You can wire your bonsai at any time of the year, but we recommend to wire your bonsai in the winter and autumn as your tree will be in its growth period.
How to wire a bonsai?
- Find the branch to be wired.
- Wrap the wire at 45 degrees around the branch.
- With a wire cutter cut off the excess section.
- When there is a side branch wire a thin section and then increase the thickness.
- At the end of the branch use a thinner section of wire.
- If we need to lower a branch because it is too high, we can use a turnbuckle or hook to remove the elevation. This hook can be used together with a protective rubber band.
- A piece of thin wire is added to the hook and attached to the pot or root, finding a way to make tension.
When should the wire be removed?
The wire should be removed before it becomes deeply embedded in the branches, as it can cause irreparable injury. The ideal way to remove the wire is to cut at each point where it has been encircled by the wire. We do not recommend recycling, as it can affect your bonsai.
Transplanted during late winter and early spring, when the bonsai starts to awaken, transplanting during this time ensures a quick recovery of the tree when it starts its growth period. In this way possible transplanting damage is totally reduced as the remaining roots at that time do not have to feed a tree with full foliage.
Steps to follow:
Cleaning the root ball: Take the tree out of the pot, and observe the type of soil. It is very important to remove the old soil from the centre of the root ball. Once the roots have been combed, try to balance their growth, pruning the thicker ones more and the thinner ones less (as we would do when pruning branches). Take advantage of this moment to remove dead or damaged roots and correct the direction of the wrongly oriented ones. Remove the roots that grow from the bottom downwards, favouring those that grow laterally. During this operation we must prevent the roots from drying out in contact with the air, for which we can spray them with water.
Preparation of the pot: The pots have holes in their base to facilitate water drainage, we must cover them using some grids, which we are going to hold by means of wire hooks, which must be bent in the shape of a U, the ends of which we will pass through the grid from the inside to the outside of the pot, and then the ends are bent, sticking them to the base of the pot.
Care after transplanting
Watering: Once the transplant is finished, water thoroughly until clear water comes out of the drains in the pot.
Protection from wind and cold: Place the tree in a sheltered place for only a couple of weeks before putting it back where it was before transplanting.
Fertilizing: After this process, the tree is recovering from a stressful practice, so NO fertilizing should be done until the tree is active again and starts to sprout again in spring.
Pests and diseases on your bonsai tree
Bonsai can be affected by pests and diseases. However, when your trees are healthy and well cared for, the risk of this is completely reduced.
How to identify them?
When the leaves suddenly turn yellow and fall off the tree, your tree may also have visible pests on it such as: Aphids, whitefly, mites, cottony bug, red spider mite, capsids and ants, which are the most common on this type of tree.
If your bonsai has a virus, it can be detected by symptoms such as discolouration of leaves and sudden branch death. Separate and isolate infected trees from healthy trees to avoid contamination.
How to treat these diseases?
Buy an insecticide (chemical or biological) to treat your trees. Carefully follow the instructions of the product you purchase and start the treatment using half the recommended dose, only if necessary, increase the dose.
Bonsai species included in the kit
It is characterised by a spectacular purple blossom in spring. It is a relatively easy tree to grow. The only difficulty with this bonsai species is in getting a good formation, as its growth makes correct and dense branching very difficult. They need a lot of sunlight to be able to flower abundantly. It should be placed in the brightest and sunniest spot you can find, although in a shadier spot it will not have too many problems either.
This is a tropical tree species that produces large, beautiful red or golden flowers that bloom from spring through summer. The flame tree likes a sunny, wind-protected location outdoors during the growing season. The cooler and darker the site, the longer the flame tree will be leafless. Mealybugs can bother the tree, especially in winter.
When caring for this pine it is important to ensure a bright outdoor location, a well-drained pot, even watering and a fertiliser not too rich in nitrogen. A bright/sunny outdoor location is very important. The white pine can tolerate frost very well.
Spruce is a genus of permanent coniferous tree. Spruces can reach 60 m in height at maturity and have the typical conical shape. The branches grow in a spiral shape. It needs a site in full sun during its growing season. In winter it should be placed in semi-shade and frost protection is recommended when the tree is planted in a pot.