Watering bonsai

The intrinsic charm of bonsai, where nature meets art

Who has never been fascinated by bonsai? Coming from the Far East, in particular from Japan and China, this plant has now fully conquered the sympathies and love of Western green thumbs, to the point that a term has been coined, “bonsaiism”, as if to describe devotion and the passion that millions of people have for this plant. Bonsai are famous not only for their size, being real “miniature trees”, but above all for one of their peculiar characteristics: care, patience and devotion are the main qualities that “bonsai” workers must demonstrate during cultivation. of bonsai in their small pots, in order to favor their optimal growth while respecting their functional balance. It is to be considered a real art as the bonsai, with matured growth, must both embody the power of nature in its small size, and convey a feeling of peace and serenity. This is why, for its cultivation, it is necessary to respect some strict rules that will greatly affect its growth.

The crucial role of watering in bonsai growth

If you try to ask for advice on bonsai cultivation from people who have been dealing with it for some time, it is very likely that the first aspect to be mentioned will be that relating to watering. It is difficult to expect otherwise from a plant which, metaphorically, recalls the human being’s need to “feed”, therefore to grow, drawing on knowledge. The bonsai needs specific care in order to grow and respect the canons of “bonsaiism”, ie maintaining the same vegetative characteristics of a large plant on a much smaller scale. And it is here that we reveal the strategic role of watering in the development of this plant: it is not a question of “wetting” the bonsai from time to time, in spare time or at the end of the working day, how much of a process surrounded by care and attention, just as if it were a small human being. Watering plays a fundamental role in the cultivation of your bonsai, let’s see why and how to proceed in the correct way.

Precautions to be taken for a correct watering of the bonsai

Watering a bonsai is not difficult, but some important rules must be taken into account to ensure that the growth of the plant takes place regularly and without nasty surprises. First of all, you need to test the hardness of the water and make sure that it is not too “hard”, ie that it does not have a high presence of limestone. This is because the limestone, after wetting the plant, would form tiny and harmful white spots on the surface of the plant. Secondly, we must remember that bonsai, in general, should be watered when the soil is dry, so always remember to feel it before proceeding. The seasons also play a crucial role in watering the bonsai: in summer it is advisable to carry out the operation in the evening; in this way, the roots of the plant will have available all night to absorb the water, and at the same time there will be no sunlight to evaporate it and deprive the bonsai of its nutrients. On the contrary, in winter it is good to water the bonsai during the day because at night there would be the risk of exposing the roots of the plant to freezing.

Watering bonsai: The best techniques for watering a bonsai in the right way

When proceeding with watering the bonsai, it is good to take into account the principle that “less is more”: the plant in fact struggles to absorb excess water, so it is always preferable to water sparingly, but frequently, and feel the soil each time to check that it is dry between one watering and the next. Obviously, the soil also wants its part when it comes to nourishing the plant with water: the ideal is to focus on a poorly draining soil, so as to allow some time to pass from one watering to the other. This choice is especially recommended for people who do not have much time to devote to the plant during the day and want to optimize management times. Finally, some considerations on the most appropriate methods for watering the bonsai: in general, it is advisable to have a simple watering can and wet the plant from top to bottom, checking that the entire surface of the soil is moist. However, there is also a second technique, called immersion: just immerse the pot with the bonsai in a container, and let the roots of the plant draw evenly to the amount of water they need.

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