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Caring for weeping willow bonsai is a challenging and time-consuming task. Whether you are beginner or experienced bonsai enthusiast, it’s important that you collect the right information about the specific plant you try to take care for.
Weeping willows are visually stunning, delightful mini versions of a fully grown willow tree. They rise up to 12 inches in height. They’re grown either upside down or right side up. This magnificent plant is embellished with big-sized, fluffy, silvery catkins and golden anthers during spring season. Blossoms are followed by lush green foliage.
The branches arc down under the weight of flowers, to present an exquisite view all throughout the year. If you attend to its daily temperature, moisture and nutritional needs, you’ll have a flourishing bonsai in the next couple of years.
- Temperature: The plant requires warm temperatures (about 25-35 degrees Celsius) and bright white light for full growth. Freezing temperatures and frost can damage its delicate roots. Therefore, you should expose it to moisture, soft wind and full direct sunlight. Place it on your window sill to fulfill its heat requirements.
- Water: If your bonsai are receiving direct sunlight for more than 10 hours every day, it’s necessary to water them twice. However, you can apply little quantities of water all throughout the day, when the soil appears hard and dry. This schedule may vary with type of soil, pot size and surrounding climate. You’ll take a while to adjust to the moisture requirements of your tree. Make sure that you use a moisture meter to determine the average value of water consumption.
- Cutting & Pruning: The plant requires frequent pruning for growth. You can shape and prune the tree using sharp scissors, on daily or weekly basis however you should refrain from cutting new shoots. Trim the older branches up to a few centimeters in order to maintain its ornamental structure.
- Acidic Soil: Weeping willows thrive on water-retaining acidic soils. This exclusive soil type is known as “akadama” in vernacular terminology. The soil is reddish-brown in color and slows down the growth of deciduous trees. This property is especially beneficial for bonsai plants and imparts a stylish shape to its canopy.
- Fertilization: Multi-purpose, water-soluble liquid fertilizers complement the growth of weeping willow bonsai. Remember to add fertilizers to the plant roots at least once a month (leaving winters). Reduce the strength of fertilizer to its half before using it. Your bonsai respond well to foliar feeding as well. You can spray the fertilizers on branches, leaves and stems.
- Repotting: Repotting should be done at least once in every two years or when the roots of the plants fill more than half the pot. It’s important to repot bonsai trees since it encourages the growth of compact root systems and fulfills the requirement of fresh soil.
- Pest Protection: Willows attract mealybugs, spider mites and other seasonal insects. Therefore, you need to spray organic pesticides on the canopy of your trees from time to time.
- Winter Care: During winters, it’s recommended that you transfer the plant to a shallow tray containing substantial quantities of gravel and water. This replenish the amount of water lost by the plant on exposure to indoor heating systems.
As the weeping willow bonsai matures with time, it gets covered with soft white budding blossoms and curvy young shoots that resemble the color of emerald stones, which makes it a perfect match for decorating patios and decks or indoor holiday decorations. If you care for it in appropriate way, it’ll stay beautiful, strong and healthy for several years to come.
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