Repotting Your Bonsai
For initiates, here are the basic points about why and when to do bonsai repotting.
Due to the fact that bonsai live in such small container, it cannot be left in it forever. From time to time, it needs to be taken out so the roots and soil can be taken care or else the bonsai will be affected. One sign is when the roots become so clogged, the bonsai start to rise from the container, affecting water intake and ventilation.
- On the one hand, the roots, as any other tree, will keep on growing and growing. Between the limited space and the fact that some roots will become old or excessively long, they will start losing its effectiveness and the bonsai health will suffer from this.
- Soil. Bonsai do not use the regular soil we may be familiar with; but a very special mix of particular selected types of soil that, based on the type and requirements of a specific tree, will balance water intake, nutrition, drainage and oxygenation.
This mix will start waring off as time goes by, affecting health and growth.
Bonsai caring will require the repotting done from time to time. As a rule of thumb, many bonsais are repotted every year, doing so by Winter; once the tree is dormant but about to start its Spring growing cycle. This time allows the tree to repair the damages of repotting but do not interfere during the growing period.
But this rule will change based on each tree type and condition. Some will require less caring as could be the case of old bonsais who do not grow roots so fast and can hold for several years. Another suggestion is that, if you take out the bonsai and the roots come out as a one-piece root-ball, then is good idea to repot.
Repotting seems cumbersome and does put a great toll to the tree. So, having the proper tools and technique is capital.
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