Random Bonsai Thoughts For All

Random Bonsai Thoughts For All

Posted by Bonsai Outlet on 18th Mar 2014

HI! Hope everyone is doing well. I had a few thoughts I wanted to share with everyone. Nothing earth shattering in the article BUT perhaps someone might get some use from my ramblings.

1) Concerning Junipers

Ok here is goes. THESE ARE OUTDOOR trees. Yes they do look great on your TV or the living coffee table or kitchen table for that matter but they will not survive inside for long. Juniper procumbus "Nana" the most common bonsai juniper is a OUTDOOR plant. It needs and requires 4 seasons to be healthy. I have a customer in Hawaii who much to his wife's displeasure, purchased a chest freezer to store his Juniper collection in (and some others) so those trees will get the winters rest they need.

Take a look around your own yard or your neighbors and chances are you will see the same juniper you have as a bonsai growing in the ground. Point being? They belong outdoors and no matter what you do you will not reinvent the wheel by trying to keep them inside!

If you are bound and determined to keep your Juniper inside might I suggest investing in a can of green spray paint as well. This way when the tree dies (and it will) you can give the brown needles a good once over with the spray paint and then you can have your juniper inside all you want! And the BONUS of this is you can then pick which shade of green you want!! YEE HAW!!!

2) Concerning Fertilizers

People please stay away from the Peters and Miracle Grow. Now I am not going to bash the makers of these and similar products. A good argument can be made for their place in the gardening world BUT it is not with bonsai. These products where designed for use with plants in open ground where drainage is not an issue. Organic fertilizers carry a much lower NPK and the possibility of overuse or frying your roots is literly nil when you use them.

The object 99.99999999999% of the time with fertilizing your bonsai is to feed your trees enough to keep them healthy. We are not looking for serious growth. As in golf a straight left arm on the back swing does not mean a stiff left arm and so it is with feeding our trees. You want to feed them enough so they are healthy. Not dose them to the point that the root system fries or the poor tree developes uncontrollable growth. Neither are desirable.

For some strange reason and I see this most commonly in America is if the fertilizer label calls for 1 Tablespoon then by GOD 2 or 3 Tablespoons must be better! Stick with the organic products. Your wallet and your trees will THANK YOU for it.. Trust me..

3) Insect and Disease Control

In the past few years the organic market has boomed with organic products that are fantastic at controlling not only insect but disease as well. Neem and Pyrethrum are just two of the organic products that work just as well or better than their Chemical based counterparts. Personally I am very found of NEEM. Not only does it take care of 99.9999% of insect problems but NEEM also has been shown to combat some known fungal root problems as well. Best of all it is NON TOXIC to bird mammals and fish.

Insecticidal soap is also a another great product that is generally nothing more than some concentrated dish soap and vegetable oil. If you mix your own pay attention to how much soap you use. You don't want or need a bubble bath for your trees!

Don't get me wrong I am not some PETA loving, GREENPEACE activist. The fact is I love a good rare steak and I have no problem burning wood in one of my two wood stoves to keep my house warm. I use these products because they work. Period.

4) Pre Bonsai Material

One of the BEST places to find awesome pre bonsai material and at prices that are so cheap you will think you are literally stealing from someone is your local Home Depot and Lowes at the end of the season. You can pick up gallon plants for as little as $3.00 sometimes. WHY? These are the plants no one wanted to purchase. They are sometimes ugly but look to see the inner beauty these lost souls have and you can pick up pre bonsai material for pennies on the dollar.

Buy them and take them home and stick them in the ground and fatten them up as needed. Sometimes you get real lucky and you can find a literal tree that is ready to go with just a little snip here and there and some wire.

DISCLAIMER: The content provided in this article is not warranted or guaranteed by Bonsai Outlet. The content provided is intended for entertainment and/or educational purposes in order to introduce to the reader key ideas, concepts, and/or product reviews. We are not liable for any negative consequences that may result from implementing any information covered in our articles or tutorials. Happy bonsai gardening.