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Growing A Brush Cherry Bonsai In Your Garden

The Brush Cherry can add wonderful color as well as interest to your garden. This evergreen shrub will enhance your gardening efforts by yielding puffy white flowers along with round berries all in contrast with it’s glossy leaves which can have a lovely red tint.

The Brush Cherry Bonsai is an evergreen shrub that loves a warm climate like that of it’s native Florida. They do grow best outdoors, but if you live in a cold climate and simply must have one, you can try growing one indoors provided that you can give it enough light. This shrub can grow to upwards of 35 feet in it’s natural state, but will reach a height of about 14″ as a Bonsai.

If you are thinking about planing a Brush Cherry in your garden, be sure that the winters will be mild. The tree does fine in hot weather but ideally should be grown in temperatures ranging from 46 to 68 degrees.

Plant your Brush Cherry Bonsai in a slightly acidic soil and be sure it gets plenty of water in summer months, but don’t over water it. You should give it enough so that the soil is moist, but not so much that there is standing water in the pot. Let the soil dry between waterings. Bonsais love humidity so you might want to mist your plant and use a humidity tray. The bonsai should be set on top of the humidity tray so that it collects water that drains from the freshly watered bonsai.

Fertilize your Brush Cherry Bonsai every two weeks during the summer and a couple of times over the winter. The best type of fertilizer to use is an organic liquid fertilizer such as a seaweed fertilizer or fish emulsion. If you use a chemical fertilizer make sure you dilute it to half strength.

Pruning should be done with care and kept to the summer months. Pinch the leaves with your fingers and try not to use sharp objects like sheers on your Bonsai. Your Bonsai should be wired during the active growing season. Don’t forget to prune the roots as well, the Brush Cherry can survive quite well even with a two thirds loss of roots so you can be a bit aggressive in this task, however you want to be sure not to prune them too much when repotting as this can cause a negative reaction.

Bonsais should be repotted every two years, and the Brush Cherry is no exception. Repotting should be done in early spring and the plant should be watered thoroughly and kept in the shade for several weeks after repotting to help the roots grow into the new pot.

Although it is fairly hardy, pests can be a problem with the Brush Cherry especially the Caribbean fruit fly, aphids, red spider mites, meal bugs, and scales. You should treat your Bonsai with organic pesticides and insecticides and be sure to inspect it regularly for pests and other disease.

To add the finishing touch to your beautiful Brush Cherry Bonsai, think about adding moss to the pot which will help improve moisture retention as well as add to the beauty of this fun garden plant.

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Growing Bonsai Trees

The essentials.

The first thing you should decide when considering growing Bonsai Trees is what type of tree you want to grow. The type of tree you want will determine not only the tree you should buy but also the design of pot and the types of tools you may require, and of course you should have the knowledge of growing the particular type of Bonsai tree that you want. Not all Bonsai trees demand the same attention. For instance draping trees will need very different pruning to a conifer and so you should have the knowledge to grow exactly what type of tree you want.

After this, it’s time to prepare yourself; you will need the appropriate tools and one good pot at the very least.

Tools.

The tools you will need include various sizes of wire and wire cutters, a small and large pair of scissors, a small pair of sharp garden shears and larger pair of pruners to cut through the thick branches.

Bonsai or not Bonsai?

Many places now sell Bonsai that are ready trained and have grown into healthy but juvenile Bonsai. As long as you are careful to pick a healthy and good looking tree then care, attention and an eye for detail means you will be able to buy a partially grown Bonsai and help it grow into a perfect full blown Bonsai. However, should you decide to buy a full grown tree or plant, then it is a good idea to visit the nurseries that stock trained Bonsai. This way you can get an idea for what type of tree you want and how they should look. It can be very difficult to see past the shape the tree already has, but remember when you want to train a tree to become your Bonsai project you will be cutting most of the branches and foliage away so it will look very dissimilar to how you first see it. You need to have good vision for this method.

Planting.

You can buy a Bonsai pot from virtually any plant shop, but make sure it has adequate drainage and preferably has little feet on it to allow the water to drain away and also allow a good level of airflow. Using a soil consisting of half organic matter and half grit will allow a good level of drainage while still giving the plant the anchorage it will need in it’s shallow pot.

Now cover the drainage holes in the bottom of your pot with a wire screen in order to prevent the soil running out. Now place a layer of grit down followed by the Bonsai soil. Now you should shape your Bonsai how you want it. Place the wire around the branches in a spiral shape, and gently bend the branches to the exact shape you want them to grow in. Be careful, though, not to break or snap any of the branches you shape. Next remove as much of the soil from the root ball as you can but be sure to leave as many of the fine feeder roots as possible and then plant your Bonsai into the pot you have prepared.

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