I have a tiny jade “sprout” that I brought in from outside last fall and planned to create a bonsai tree from it. Of course, I am using that term loosely because I don’t know anything about bonsai other than I think it looks awesome. But since I had a lot of Jade Plant cuttings, I wanted to attempt a bonsai-type look for this one. Here is the video where I first uprooted and transplanted it. https://youtu.be/1yKSA3bV9pg
Since I had a tiny flat hypertufa pot that I had previously had outside, I cleaned that up and used it for my container. It seemed to be about the right size for a tiny bonsai. I can only go by what I read on instructional videos and what I see the experts do, so I am just winging it. ( I am under lockdown this Spring of 2020 and I have a lot of time on my hands.)
My Beginner Bonsai Tree – What I Am Attempting
I know I want a thick trunk. Those images on websites I find are so awesome! (Hopefully I will live long enough to see this since it takes a loooonnngggg time. ) Pruning the plant back a lot is supposed to help it have a thicker trunk. Supposedly this will make it use its energy to working on the trunk than in making new leaves. That sounds logical.
Some helpful hints were given to me on my last video such as to wire the root ball to the planter itself. I have done that but I have just wrapped it around the outside of the planter as opposed to wiring the root ball and anchoring it through the drainage hole somehow. Remember I am a beginner bonsai-er.
Of course, that example is not a Jade Plant or Crassula Ovata, but it just goes to show you how a huge trunk on one of these bonsai gives it a whole new look! So majestic and ancient. (This one probably has quite a few years on it.)
I know that I want my beginner bonsai to have a canopy that is mostly at the top of the tree. Not sure how to do that since it keeps sprouting new leaves all along the trunk, even growing them up from the base of the trunk. Do I just keep pruning them off? Will that make it just grow more? Or does that send more energy to the trunk?
As for wire training the tree? No, that is not something I am going to attempt at all. I will just strive for a pretty Jade Tree that will work as a houseplant inside and see how that goes for me. In the future, I may want to make a larger bonsai from some other type of conifer or something that would grow outside here in my area. (Ohio) I really would like to try something that would bloom in the spring. Wouldn’t that be awesome? Or just a large and twisted juniper of some kind. Working on it outside would be good for me.
Meanwhile, here is my video of the pruning of this beginning bonsai. I guess I am at stage two since it has been planted and has grown quite a bit. Now I will cut it back some more. I guess I should measure the trunk diameter or circumference so that I have some kind of record of its growth.
Please watch and give me any advice you can. I am open to everything. Why not get yourself one and join me?
Hi, I am Kim and thank you so much for visiting my magazine! I am a gardener and a hypertufa maker. If you came here to learn about hypertufa, I have a lot of information. But I also write about flower gardening and using succulents which are great drought-tolerant plants.