What Are Bonsai?

I keep getting asked by people back in the USA, what are bonsai?

Bonsai is the art of growing trees in small pots, cultivating the look of the tree to be any design that is desired. Now, bonsai trees are kept by the rich and poor alike, as these plants are inexpensive to care for and easy to work with.

Beginners can enjoy a bonsai tree allowed to flourish in their more natural state, while advanced hobbyists typically work to design their trees to meet a specific goal.

There are many different types of bonsai trees available on the market, including both conifers and non-conifer trees. When you are selecting which bonsai to grow, you should take care to study the grow zone you live in and pick a tree suitable for that zone. This is important as bonsai trees are designed to be grown and nurtured outdoors.

While there is a growing trend to caring for them indoors, many of the traditional trees, such as the Japanese maple bonsai, do not do well indoors. This is due to the fact that these trees require a period of dormancy, where the tree will rejuvenate any damage that has been done to it over the growing seasons between spring and fall. If you fail to allow the tree to go into the state of dormancy, the tree will typically die within a few months of its scheduled time in dormancy.

Many bonsai trees have this problem, though the most notable and common tree used for bonsai with this problem is the juniper. Junipers in particular are extremely sensitive to their dormancy period and should not be kept indoors.

There are certain times of years that some trees requiring pruning or need a new pot, and other times of year where it is safe to wire them. Each species of tree is different, so research is required when you pick out a new bonsai.

As the trees can live to be hundreds of years old, you can expect to keep your tree with you your entire life, if you care for it properly.

You can purchase bonsai supplies online or through your local nurseries.