Bonsai trees

The Bonsai tree from a seed

This way of creating a bonsai tree is the longest way out of all the ones mentioned within this article. In this article I want to give you much more detailed information on how do it.

Buy, find or how to obtain bonsai seeds?

You can simply take some seeds from nature. Generally, if there are trees growing near your house, there should be seeds from them present everywhere; You only need to open your eyes and look for some. Another option is a vacation; If you go on holiday to other country you can take seeds from there. You will do best if spruce trees' cones are taken at the end of the winter season. Put the Spruce trees' cones over the radiator. The influence of the heat on the cone will open it and you can take the seeds. Take only cones which are on the ground. These cones are ripe and the seeds will germinate. Next you can get some seeds from seed man or another bonsai tree owner. Whenever you obtain seeds you must plant them immediately. Seeds have a short germination.

What to do with the seeds?

If you want to plant seeds of outdoor trees (spruce trees), you always need to do so-called 'seed stratification'.

Seed stratification means mixing seeds with wet river sand and keeping them in a closed bottle at the bottom down part of a refrigerator (the temperature should be stable, about 4°C). During the process of seed stratification, the river sand must be mildly wet. At the end of seed stratification, plant the seeds into seeding pots. Not picking the end of stratification the period correctly might cause only a few seeds to germinate, but they will germinate next spring. This could happen especially if you are working with sequoia, toreje, jinanu and pines Pinus pumila, cembra, flexilis, grifithii, koreansis, parviflora, peuce and strobus species seeds. Cover the seed with about 0.5 cm thick layer of river sand.

All of your seeds should be placed in shadow during August. At least 50% of the area should be in shadow. After successful germination, it's possible to plant future trees into pots next year, or even the same year.

Below is a list of bonsai trees species which can be reproduced by seeds relatively easy. Naturally, each of these species has different demands on conditions, and might require special care.

Olea europaea - Olive tree

Plant seeds in an ordinary soil with indoor temperature. The germination process can take up to 9 months.

Pittoporum tobira

Seed stratification should take two months at least, or plant them without stratification, but germination could happen after 2-3 months.

Japanese maples

After planting seeds, the major part of japanese maples will germinate in 3-8 months. It's also recommended to use chiller for this purpose. Therefore, it is advisable to plant dry seeds straight without any stratification anytime during the year. Plant them widely into a soil and clear river sand with thickness approximately 0,5 cm. Overshadow seeds with spruce mistletoe. Leave it outside in the rain, snow and the frost. Only if you plant japanese maples during summer, irrigate the soil, so that seeds won't dry up.

General suggestions

Use soil without nutrients, disease-producing elements and weed seeds. The best choice is peat with pearlite in ratio 1:1. The depth of planting seeds is given by the size of seed. Generally, the depth shouldn't be more than two times of seed's size. When you plant seeds into soil, backfill them and gently press down the soil. Thus seeds will better adhere to the soil and will sprout faster. Now you must water the seeds. Immerse the container with soft seeds into another bigger container with water. The soil will get soft gently without any risk of water logging the seeds. Larger seeds can be irrigated directly from a watering can. Now, place the containers in shadow until the seeds sprout. Be careful and don't allow the soil to dry up, then the result would be uncertain. Naturally, a container with seeds must have drainage holes on the bottom. If you water more than is required, water will drain out, so the risk of losing the seeds is lessened. The best solution is to cover the container with glass. This will keep the humidity at a high level. The best temperature is about 20 - 24°C. When you first notice seedlings, remove the glass and put the container somewhere, where where is more light; but not direct sunlight. It would damage or kill small plants.

I wanted to give you basic suggestions on how to start a bonsai tree from seeds. Our further articles will focus on particular bonsai tree species and of course, we will describe each species with a focus on seeds too.

Seeds Pictures

Olive; Olea Europaea bonsai seed

Mediterranean stone pine
Mediterranean stone pine; Pinus Pinea bonsai seed

Pomegranate; Punica Granatum bonsai seed

Holm Oak
Holm Oak; Quercus Illex bonsai seed

Coast Redwood (Sequoia)
Holm Oak; Sequoia Sempervirens bonsai seed

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