I bought my first bonsai tree last Monday; a seven year old ficus retusa. Everything was going fine until Sunday morning when I found two yellowing leaves on it when I woke up. I cut these off. Then this morning I found another two leaves, one yellow and another starting to go that way. When I came home from work the second leaf seemed to be more yellow than this morning.
I have watered it twice since I bought it. The shop owner had watered it on Monday and told me not to water it for a few days. I waited until Thursday to water it the first time which I did by sitting it into a bowl of water for about ten minutes. I repeated this again on Sunday. Also I mist it every day.
I keep the tree indoors. I don't have very good natural lighting, so I leave the fluorescent light on in the kitchen and leave it on the kitchen counter when I'm at work. I then put it in front of a fluorescent desk lamp on the coffee table when I get home in the evening. I keep it away from the window because the light it would get from there would be quite dull and it could get a draft. I live in Ireland (I don't know what my zone is) and the weather is starting to take on more of a wintry hue to it.
I pruned it on Saturday. I removed one branch from the top because I thought it needed to be thinned out a bit. I also wanted to take a couple of cuttings to see if I could get them to root. Could this have put it into shock?
I have noticed insects moving about in the soil. They looked to me like ants. I think I saw one of them flying away. Is it bad under any circumstances to have insects in the soil or does it just depend on the insect in question? I thought they might have some role to play in aerating the soil so I didn't panic too much when I saw them. I have been concerned though to see bite marks being taken out of my leaves. It only affects a couple of leaves but clearly something has been eating them.
I have also noticed what look like specks of dirt on the leaves which I have wiped away with my finger. They don't seem to be alive, ie I haven't seen them moving but I don't know what they are or how they got there. Again I couldn't call it an infestation, but if I examine the leaves carefully I can usually find two or three of these little specks, usually on the top of the leaves.
I've been googling all day about yellowing leaves and have narrowed the possibilities down to either watering it too much. Or not enough. Or getting it too much light. Or not enough. Or the insects. Or not! If anyone can give me any advice I'd really appreciate it. I've heard that fig trees are pretty indestructible so it'd be really bad if I couldn't keep it alive.