Bonsai Plant Features
Few plants are as stylish and sophisticated as bonsai. These tiny trees are perfect dramatic decor for indoor spaces, especially desks, offices, and bedrooms. They practically radiate Zen! The most thing to know about bonsai is that it's not a type of plant, but instead, a way of treating a plant. That's important fact because when it comes for caring for your bonsai, you have to give your bonsai the kind of light, water, temperature, etc. that plant type needs.
Just about any tree or shrub can be grown as a bonsai; the best houseplants tend to be tropical species that don't need to go dormant in the winter. Trees and shrubs from temperate climates -- such as azaleas or Japanese maples -- typically need some cold temperatures to rest for winter. Inside a home where it's mild all the time, these plants can sulk.
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Bonsai Growing Instructions
Most trees and shrubs we grow as bonsai prefer a bright spot indoors. They are tropical species, and as such, make for the best bonsai houseplants. Many ficus, in particular, thrive as bonsai. Many trees and shrubs that come from cold-winter climates, such as maples or pines, and grown as bonsai will not thrive indoors.
Water most varieties of bonsai once the top inch or so of the potting mix starts to dry. It's important not to overwater bonsai; too much water can make the roots drown and die. Fertilize once or twice during the spring and summer months with a general-purpose fertilize made for use on indoor plants.
Bonsai does require yearly pruning to keep it in shape and from outgrowing its container. When shaping your bonsai, don't forget to remove the plant from its pot and prune the roots as well as the shoots, to keep it from becoming rootbound.
Note: Bonsai is not intended for human or animal consumption.
Get more in-depth bonsai care tips!
Indoors: High light
Indoors: Medium light
Medium water needs
Purifies the air
Complement your Bonsai with these varieties:
Succulents are beautiful accents to bonsai; both have a pleasing sense of Zen.
Keep with a simplistic theme and grow varieties of moss with your bonsai.
Varieties: Our Favorites
Formosana bonsai does best in a medium to bright spot and features dark green leaves. This tropical is an excellent bonsai houseplant.
Fukien tea is a lovely tropical bonsai that makes a good indoor plant. It thrives in medium to high light and features tiny white flowers when happy.
Ginseng ficus is an elegant bonsai with small, shiny, dark green leaves. It does well in low, medium, or bright spots.
One of the more challenging bonsai varieties, juniper likes bright, indirect light and mild temperatures.
Also called money tree, pachira bonsai offers hand-shaped leaves with a beautiful texture. Pachira is one of the easiest bonsai varieties to grow indoors.
Privet bonsai have uniquely shaped dark green leaves that elegantly hug the plant's stems. It does best in medium light, but also grows in indirect, bright light -- as well as low light.