Bonsai trees

The Bonsai tree - how to obtain

There are several ways how obtain your own bonsai tree. I'd like to show you the advantages and disadvantages of each of these ways. It's up to you which one you choose. Bear in mind, that the easiest way doesn't automatically mean the minimum of problems.

Potential ways:

  • 1. Buy bonsai in a specialized shop,
  • 2. Buy a young tree in a garden centre,
  • 3. Find a tree in the wild,
  • 4. Plant a seed and wait until the tree grows,
  • 5. Use tree branches,
  • 6. Some other options.

1. Buying a bonsai tree in a specialized shop

This way is the best if you want to obtain your own bonsai tree quickly. Generally, it is the best solution for people who want one or two bonsai trees as decoration in their homes. You don't even need to know any techniques of how to create bonsai trees from a little seed. The only thing you must know is what kind of bonsai you want, or which one is suitable for the climate in your house or garden. In order to keep your tree happy you'll also need to study how often to water it, fertilizing requirements, and other simple responsibilities. It is recommended to buy those bonsais only for which you can provide similar conditions they have in nature. Naturally, if you give your tree everything that it needs, you will be surprised how terrific this decoration might look. Basically, you can find many bonsai trees of various species in shops. You should be very careful in order to determine if the sellers are skilled in this area. You should also ask them for advice, and you should ask if the tree is suitable for beginners. In my experience, the most beautiful trees shouldn't be bought by a newbie, since it could die very easily if care is not appropriate. You'd be better off buying a small tree for a few bucks so you will not risk any expensive loss and you can also learn easily.

2. Buying a young tree in a garden center

This way is much more problematic that the previous one. However, if you want to form the bonsai's look, you can't do anything better than buying a small tree. Of course, problems regarding finding the most suitable tree may occur. Problems usually arise in forming such young trees for gardens, or hedges instead of bonsai styles. This might result in a deformed look which is useless for future bonsai training.

3. Finding a tree in the wild

In the sense of spent time, this solution needs a lot of time and patience. So if you're ready for walks in forests, let's try it. Obviously, you can find interesting little trees in nature. They may be miniaturized for some common reasons. First, they are small if there is a small space for their roots. Another reason is that animals nibble them. The advantage of such trees is that they may be very old and you can see the marks of age on them. You can replant them to your garden. Of course, always ask the permission of the land owner. Plant them in the garden and leave them for 3-4 years to recover and acclimatize to new conditions. The most important disadvantage is that all land has it's owner as mentioned above. What's more, it's not always legal to replant every tree, since some species are protected by law.

4. Planting a seed and wait until the tree grows

This way of creating a bonsai tree is the longest method out of all ones mentioned within this article. On the other hand, it is the best one if you want to control the entire bonsai's life. It is important to let them live during the first 3 years without any excessive intervention. You can start forming some species after they reach 3 years of age, some others require at least 5-6 years. In this way, you must be very patient, since there are a lot of hidden traps if you're a beginner. Little trees are very sensitive on negative changes. A few days of dry can stop your ambitions. A new tree will not necessarily have all the good genetic information from the tree you take seeds from. Generally speaking, it is all hazardous.

5. Using tree branches

Using branches is a fast and safe way. If you take branches from a tree with good genetic information, then you have a high chance of creating a nice bonsai after 3 or 4 years. However, you must know something about seasons in order to ensure healthy growth and success. It's good to take branches from leafy trees during June, and branches from spruce trees during Winter as well as Summer. For beginners, it's good to start with Ficus benjamina which might grow into a beautiful bonsai tree. Generally, it is not as demanding as other species. But remember, every tree requires your care.

6. Some other options

These options include techniques which are used by professionals only. For example, some trees create flowers after 20 years. A good example is an apple-tree. If you plant a seed of the apple-tree now, it will make flowers after 20 years. If you use your tree from seed and you graft a twig from an apple tree that has flowers now on it, you will have flowers on your tree too in about a year. As I mention above, such a technique is for professionals. If you try any of the options 1-5 successfully, and have enough patience for this hobby, you should succeed. Otherwise, you could damage or kill some good looking trees.

I will write more on each technique in the future.

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