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STARTING OUT IN BONSAI

Though bonsai can be very daunting to newcomers when they first start out, in reality it is as simple as you make it. There are many species and varieties of trees available to grow, many new techniques that can be learnt to improve bonsai appearance and a seemingly unfathomable quantity of do's and don'ts, the most important aspect as a beginner is to learn how to simply maintain the shape of your tree and keep it alive. Learn to look after your first tree successfully and your confidence grows enough to widen your horizons and successfully learn more advanced techniques such as reselling and creating bonsai. But don't run before you walk. The first fundamental rules to learn when embarking on this Art is that you are dealing with something living and ever-changing; the basic rules of horticulture need be learnt before you can successfully maintain your tree. There are many bonsai techniques available for the bonsai enthusiast to use to reach the ultimate goal of a beautiful tree. Confusingly, information available on the many bonsai web sites and books can often be contradictory. It should be understood that for every objective such as repotting, pruning or styling there are a 100 different techniques or viewpoints. Some are based on horticultural fact, some are based on horticultural myth and some are based on horticultural luck!! In fact many of these techniques will work to one degree or another; unfortunately though not killing your tree, some advice and/or techniques can result in diminished vigour as your trees cope under stress, whilst sound advice based on simple horticultural fact can only improve the health, appearance and vigour of your tree. It is for you to learn which techniques work for you and your tree in your given situation.
Getting Started with Bonsai
Bonsai is an enjoyable hobby and form of art. However, unlike most other art forms bonsai is unique in that one's canvas is alive and changing. Aside from the art side of things one needs to develop some knowledge of arboriculture. Along with knowing how to make the tree look appealing one also needs to keep it alive. This article will serve as an overview of bonsai basics to help beginners get started with the hobby of bonsai.
Selecting a bonsai tree
From a high level one can classify bonsai trees into two groups; indoor and outdoor. Outdoor bonsai should never be kept indoors for more than a few days as the lack of light and temperature difference will cause it to weaken and it may die. Therefore, if one wants an outdoor bonsai they should make sure they have a suitable outdoor location for it. Outdoor bonsai typically tend to be evergreens and conifers. One of the most popular bonsai trees is the Juniper which is an outdoor tree.
Getting started
The main items one will need are a tree, a pot to put it in, bonsai soil, sharp shears, and a root rake or root hook. Anything beyond those items are optional, but will make certain tasks easier to accomplish.
Things to know and do before buying a bonsai tree
​1. Research the species first
2. If your tree naturally grows in the shade some will need to be provided (naturally or via shade
cloth).
3. Rotating your bonsai tree several times per growing season will help to ensure all areas receive
exposure to the sun.
4. Try not to handle your bonsai daily. Leaving it alone will allow the root system to develop.
5. If the tree species you are considering does not grow well in your area in the ground then the
chances are it won't do any better as a bonsai.
6. Using a well draining soil mix is key.
7. Research common pests and ailments associated with the tree species.
8. Join a bonsai club.


2.9 - The Bonsai Story

2.8 - What is Bonsai?!

2.4 - What is Bonsai really?

2.3 - The History of Bonsai

2.1 - Arts related to Bonsai

2.2 - Bonsai - Horticultural or Art Form?

2.5 - History of Bonsai in China

2.6 - History of Bonsai in Japan

2.7 - History of Bonsai in the West

2.5 - History of Bonsai in China

2.6 - History of Bonsai in Japan

2.7 - History of Bonsai in the West


Bonsai...It goes without saying that when someone, no matter who they are sees a Bonsai Tree that can't help but stop and admire it.

The fascination to having a small tree that emulates nature is an age-old passion. As we race around in our day-to-day life, it is comforting to know that a moments peace can be found by simply taking a minute to stop and gaze upon a Bonsai Tree.


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When you seek one-of-a-kind, creative solutions, established, experienced, and professional packed with visionaries...well, that's when you should contact Francois Loots Contact

Twelve years experience...

Francois Loots (Owner)

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