The Art of Creating a Bonsai
Trees are an essential part of our lives. It not only does sustains ecosystem, provides oxygen, stabilize soil, provides shelter but it does much more. Trees have been proven to improve a person’s mental health and better their cognitive functioning. They are stress busters; they provide a positive aura to our surroundings and keep us happy and calm.
Bonsai originated over 1,000 years ago in China and is a very popular form of plantation. Bonsai comes from the Japanese word ‘bon’ meaning tray and ‘sai’ meaning planting; thus, it means tray planting. Bonsai is a cultivation technique where in living dwarf trees are grown in containers.
Growing a bonsai is not such a difficult task if done properly. So here is a guide of how you can grow and maintain a bonsai in your home or office.
Acquiring a tree
The first thing you need to do is acquire the perfect tree that suits all your criteria. This you can do by buying a readymade bonsai tree from a store or you may collect it from nature and cultivate it yourself which can be quite tricky if you are a beginner. So, to acquire a bonsai, you must first need to decide on whether you want the tree indoors or outdoors. If you wish to keep your bonsai indoors, then you have the options to buy from sub-tropical trees that can survive indoors and if you wish to grow it outside, then you can choose from non-tropical trees.
Getting the appropriate container
After acquiring a bonsai tree, the next step is to select the appropriate container that would perfectly sustain your bonsai tree. The containers can be made out of ceramic, concrete or plastic, but usually they are earthenware. It could be of any shape: round, rectangular, or lobed and it completely depends on you. The container must have one or more drainage holes at the bottom and wiring holes to keep the tree fixed to the pot.
Growing and cultivation
Now that you have got everything, you must carefully nurture and cultivate the bonsai tree. For this, you must replace the soil, feed and water the tree more often. You must adapt the technique of pruning, wherein you trim the leaves of trees and cut away dead or overgrown branches. Pruning is essential to shape the tree and keep it miniaturized. The next important technique is wiring and clamping the tree. In this, you wrap an anodized aluminum or copper around the branches of the tree to bend and shape them. Wiring and be applied all year, however, the best time is when the tree is young and healthy.
The last step is to properly care and maintain the bonsai tree. Though different tree species have different guidelines to be maintained, but some of the common guidelines that you can follow are as follows:
- Watering: How often bonsai trees needs to be watered depends upon various factors, such as, species of tree, soil, climate, pot type and size, etc. Over-watering or lack of water can cause death of the tree. Therefore, you must choose the right soil mixture and do re-potting regularly.
- Fertilization: The next essential thing is to fertilize your tree. Depending on the tree species you can fertilize the tree regularly with mixture of organic nutrients essential for the tree.
Thus, bonsai cultivation is an art that can be easily done if you follow all the above mentioned steps properly. With proper care, attention and a little patience, you can cultivate bonsai and also make it a lifelong hobby.