Bonsai Watering
Watering Bonsai Print
Written by Bonsai King   
Saturday, 21 June 2008 19:58

Watering bonsai is a sensitive matters as I've seen this in a lot of books and websites. But please bear with me as I explain the matter as carefully as I can.

Before watering Bonsai, the first question that arises is when to water your bonsai? It is important to bear in mind the following important properties of a good soil mix.

1. It must be porous enough to allow exchange of air. Roots need oxygen to survive.

2. The soil mix has to retain moisture but not wet. Roots need very high moisture to survive. Moisture pertains to the amount of water in the air surrounding the roots.

3. Organics are essential if you do not feed fertilizer to your plant since it provides nutrition for your bonsai.

4. If you use inorganic soil mix such as perlite, vermiculite, or sand, you need to fertilize regularly.

Popular method 1

Use a stick and poke it into the soil. This is a procedure that you do to know if the soil is still damp. You get a small stick and push it into the soil, then feel the tip of the stick between your fingers. If it is dry then you have to water your bonsai. If it is still damp, you can wait for a while before watering. If you have tried this before, you might have noticed the following:

1. The stick sometimes cut fine roots and you can feel it in your hands while poking the stick.

2. You end up with a hole and compacted soil around the hole. you try to remove the compaction by cultivating the soil around the hole but you cut more of the fine roots.

3. You end up with a lot of holes after some time.

4. The stick is not pointed enough and it compacts the soil at the tip of the stick. You end up with a compacted soil after a long time.

5. If your soil is like acadama which disintegrates after some time, then the poking of the stick pulverizes it speeding up disintegration and you end up with a compacted soil (see the article on preferential pathways)

I do not recommend this method

Popular method 2

Have you tried waiting until it wilts? This is bad for your plant. Letting your plant wilt will encourage the growth of more roots to search for water. There will be more growth below the ground than above. You will notice that this method will result to slow growth. This can also result to early pot-bounding. (see pot-bound) I do not recommend this method.

Best method

The best way is to have a

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Last Updated on Monday, 20 December 2010 14:19