Bonsai Gardening Secrets

Japanese Maple Bonsai

Copyright © 2004
by Erik A. Olsen
Excerpted from Bonsai Gardening Secrets®
Of all the maples used for Bonsai, the Japanese Maple is the most popular. For one, this tree is small, making it great for training. Additionally, the appearance is beautiful. You will find the foliage to be delicate, fern like, and in the fall, the colors are brilliant, ranging from deep red to a rich, elegant gold.


· The Japanese Maple needs partial shade during the summer months and then full sun the remainder of the year
· You will also need to ensure this tree is not placed in the path of direct wind
· During the springtime, any unwanted shoots will need to be removed
· Any shoots with five nodes or more should be removed, leaving approximately one-half inch for die back.
· Every winter to early spring, you will need to repot and fertilize
· The Japanese Maple requires plenty of water without allowing the plant to dry out in between watering, which can cause the leaves to burn or become over watered causing the roots to rot


· While the Japanese Maple can tolerate changes during the wintertime better than other maples can, they will still need proper shelter and shade to ensure the leaves do not shrivel up and die
· Drying winds can cause significant damage to this type of Bonsai, causing the leaves to become burned and die


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