Cypress bonsai

The main characteristics of the Cypress bonsai plant

Cypress bonsai plants are called Chamaecyparis in botany and belong to the Cupressaceae family. Native to the Asian continent and North America, they are conifers with evergreen foliage and a compact appearance. The bark of the trunk appears wrinkled even in young specimens and takes on an old-fashioned appearance over time. The foliage can have a conical or columnar bearing, the leaves are scaly and have an ovate shape of dark green color and depending on the species it takes on blue tones. The Cypress bonsai most easily available on the market is the so-called Chamaecyparis obtusa, it easily adapts to different environmental and climatic contexts, does not fear pruning, topping and winding, it is easy to grow even by the most inexperienced.

Cultivation techniques of the cypress bonsai species

There are not many cultural attentions that the Cypress bonsai requires to grow and develop a compact leaf crown. The most suitable soil for these plants is mainly composed of akadama, mixed with portions of garden soil and gravel, to ensure proper water drainage. The exposures are very bright and sunny in winter while they are more shaded during the warm months of the summer season. They can grow outdoors but need to be protected from sub-zero temperatures, prolonged frosts, and strong currents from the north. Irrigation is regular but not too abundant throughout the year, wait until the substrate is dry before proceeding with watering again. Repotting is done every two to three years.

Pruning and pinching of cypress bonsai plants

Cypress bonsai need to develop the foliage well before undergoing the intervention of the formation pruning that takes place before the spring vegetative restart, usually every two years. The natural appearance that these plants take on with the passage of time is columnar or conical. Too numerous or opposing branches must be eliminated. The compact habit can weigh down the plant in the long run, so it is necessary to thin out the most leafy branches with suitable scissors. The use of pinching is essential to balance the development of leaf buds that grow continuously, all year round. Starting from the base, the most vigorous and large shoots are pinched to make room for the younger ones, recognizable by their smaller size.

Cypress bonsai: Fertilization and adversity of cypress bonsai plants

The period to start fertilizing the Cypress bonsai coincides with the vegetative restart which takes place in spring. The little soil contained in the pot easily loses the nutrients necessary for a luxuriant and continuous growth. Every two weeks, it is advisable to administer a specific fertilizer, rich in phosphorus and potassium to be diluted in the irrigation water. In the month of July the fertilizer is suspended to resume later, at the end of August and continuing until autumn. Water stagnation from watering can lead to the onset of fungal diseases that affect and perish the delicate root system. They can also be infested with scale insects and aphids, to prevent it is advisable to periodically carry out treatments with insecticides and fungicides.

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