Chinese Elm Bonsai
Chinese Elm Bonsai
The Chinese elm is a very popular choice of bonsai recommended for beginners as it is a strong tree that reacts well to pruning. If you want to practice clip-and-grow pruning look no further. Elms grows fast making it easy to build up a dense foliage mass by pruning alone within a few years. New shoots on an Elm will extend in any direction with alternating leaves getting bigger as the shoot gets longer. With them being quite an adaptable species, they are more tolerant to imperfect growing conditions. Fortunately, due to their natural vigour they are very good at recovering from accidental neglect too. Probably one of the best reasons why it is recommenced to beginners. Chinese Elm is a deciduous - sometimes semi-deciduous tree depending on the location. The graceful branches have clusters of leaves that emerge as green in the Spring and change to shades of golden during Autumn. Sometimes their leaves turn shades of red and purple too!
Caring for your elm bonsai
Elms love water. Water until water comes out of the drainage holes in the bottom. During the growth season, Spring – Summer, a lot of the shaping can be done with trimming alone. General maintenance pruning is to probably trim back to 1-3 leaves on each new shoot. Woody branches and trunks are reasonable flexible and can be wired into position if necessary.
Good to know: If something upsets an Elm they can often drop their leaves in a short period of time. Although this may be alarming for the inexperienced, with correct care and attention elms will almost always leaf back within a few weeks.
The Chinese elm thrives in either full sun and/or partial shade. It can be kept outdoors as well as indoors in a sunny location. They are very tolerant of a wide variety of temperatures and climates. They can be grown year-round in a light warm indoor location where they will stay in leaf and growing all year. Or they can also be grown outside where they will go dormant in Winter.
Elm bonsai enjoy organic feed. Moderate application of once a month is all that's necessary to keep elm bonsai growing strong.
Photo: 03 Feb 24
Height: 30cm from the bottom of the pot.