Are Bonsai Trees Hard to Care For?

bonsai trees hard to care for

Bonsai trees are great plants to have, but they can be hard to care for. They need lots of attention to keep them alive and well. This article outlines some things you can do to help.


Fertilizing bonsai trees is important to maintain the health of your bonsai. There are many types of fertilizers available, but the most suitable type of fertilizer for your plant will depend on the species of the tree, its age, and the season it is being grown.

Some people prefer to use organic fertilizers, which are made from natural ingredients. These are a more cost effective option, and tend to be less harsh on the roots of the bonsai. Besides providing plants with the essential nutrients, organic fertilizers also provide the soil with important microbes.

Fertilizers for bonsai are available in liquid, granular, or powder forms. Regardless of which type you choose, be sure to read the instructions. A good fertilizer should contain the “big three” nutrients, nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium.

Bonsai tree fertilizer should be applied in small amounts and twice as frequently as indicated on the package. Applying too much can result in over fertilization, coarse branches, and yellowing leaves.

The best time to fertilize your bonsai is in the summer. In the winter, the tree is dormant, so there is little growth. If you are not using fertilizer during this period, you may end up wasting your money.

In addition to the “big three”, your bonsai will also require a high level of potassium to enhance its overall health. Potassium will help your tree to withstand stress, and encourage sap flow.

Another important nutrient for your bonsai is phosphorus, which contributes to healthy root growth and fruit and flower development. Nitrogen is added in the early growth phase, and a low-nitrogen, high-potash fertilizer should be used in the late growth phase.

Whether you choose a granular or liquid fertilizer for your bonsai, be sure to follow the directions. Avoid using products that contain urea. Urea is a synthetic chemical that replaces the nitrogen in your tree’s soil. This can be harmful to delicate trees that grow in limited soil.

Bonsai fertilizers can be either organic or synthetic, so make sure to read the label before purchasing. You may want to mix the fertilizer with water before applying it.


Pruning bonsai trees can be a daunting task, especially for beginner’s. However, with the right tools, techniques, and a little bit of patience, you can successfully prune your bonsai.

First, you need to understand the basic structure of a tree. Some species grow well with little or no pruning, while others are particularly fussy. Whether you’re pruning a pine or a palm, you need to know how to properly identify the trunk of the tree and how to cut it to get the right shape and size.

The best time to prune a bonsai tree is during its growth period. Depending on the species, some trees grow more during the winter, while others do better in the spring. If you have a young tree, you should prune it at least once every year.

When you first start pruning your bonsai, you should remove dead branches. These are unsightly, and will make the tree look unruly. You also want to remove twigs growing over each other. This helps create an open and clear twig structure, which adds interest.

Another good practice is to maintain a good root structure. To achieve this, you should remove branches that are too tall or have an awkward shape. It’s also a good idea to make sure that your bonsai gets enough light.

Finally, a tree’s roots play a vital role in supporting the weight of the tree. Keeping them free of obstructions is crucial to its health. While it may seem like you’re just cutting away unwanted parts of the plant, you’re actually helping the tree to thrive.

There are three types of pruning, which are based on the shape of the tree, its foliage, and its roots. Generally speaking, the first type is the easiest to perform. Using a branch splitter or scissors, you can remove branches that are out of proportion, and are not contributing to the overall health of the plant.

For a full picture of how to prune your bonsai, consult a bonsai book. A good resource can be found online or in your local book store. During this process, you should keep careful records of the changes you make.


Watering bonsai trees can be a challenging task. Having the right watering equipment can help avoid damage to your trees. Using a soil moisture meter is the best way to accurately measure your trees’ needs.

When choosing the watering method for your trees, consider the climate in your area, your tree’s species, and its size. Outdoor bonsai require more frequent watering in the summer. They need less water in the winter. In addition, the top layer of rock on the soil can cause problems for your trees. You can remove the top layer to expose the underlying soil.

You can use a garden wand or a watering can to apply water to your trees. It is important to use a fine nozzle to prevent splashing.

If you are looking for the most effective and efficient way to water your bonsai trees, you should consider a soil moisture meter. The meter will let you know when to water your bonsai and how much.

If you want to get more hands-on with your bonsai, you can also attend classes. These are generally held at botanical gardens or at local nurseries. By taking a class, you can learn some tips and tricks from other bonsai enthusiasts.

If you are watering a bonsai in a container, make sure the container has drainage holes. This will allow for water to drain into the surrounding soil, rather than dripping onto your tree’s branches.

It is also important to check the PH level of your soil regularly. Fluoride buildup in the topsoil can be harmful for your bonsai.

The best natural water for your bonsai is rainwater. Rainwater is full of naturally occurring nutrients. Alternatively, you can store the water in a pottery or other suitable container.

Watering bonsai trees should be an enjoyable experience. It allows you to spend time with your trees while still giving them the care they need. Also, it will help you to visualize your trees’ shape.

If you are unsure whether you have properly watered your bonsai, take a look at the underside of the tree’s leaves. If the leaves are yellow, you have a problem.


There are many different types of soils that you can use for your Bonsai trees. However, selecting the right one can be a tricky process. Fortunately, there are a few simple principles that can help you make the best choice.

When you choose a soil mix, consider its moisture-retention abilities. Bonsai trees need to have adequate water retention so that they don’t dry out, which can lead to root rot. They also need air pockets for aeration.

Some of the components that you can add to your soil include pumice, akadama, and lava rock. These can be sifted before adding them to your mix. Pumice absorbs water and nutrients. Akadama and lava rock are porous, so they hold the water. If you are unsure about the proper amount to add, you can always add a bit of organic potting compost to the mix.

The pH of your Bonsai soil is another important factor. An ideal pH is between 6.5 and 7.5. Most organic materials have good moisture-retention capabilities. Organic soils like pumice and akadama are also excellent for aeration.

The type of soil you use for your Bonsai depends on the species of tree you are growing. Coniferous plants, for example, need a different mixture than deciduous varieties.

You should check your Bonsai soil regularly to make sure it remains moist. This will prevent problems such as root rot. A good rule of thumb is to water your Bonsai once a day. However, it is best to water only when the top layer of the soil looks dry. Using a moisture gauge can help you monitor the amount of water in the soil.

One of the main reasons Bonsai trees don’t grow well in regular potting soil is because they can’t retain moisture. You should always repot your Bonsai trees every two years or so.

Whether you choose to use an organic or inorganic soil mix, it’s important to ensure that your Bonsai has the right balance of drainage. Without it, the soil will dry out quickly and roots will be at risk.

There are a number of pre-made Bonsai soil mixes available on the market. You can also customize your own mix with other elements.