edseb1977
Newly Registered
Posts: 2
Joined: Sat Nov 10, 2007 2:39 am
Location: Bangkok

Bonsai leaves falling

Help, i went on holiday for 5 days and did not water my bonsai and it has shed nearly all its leaves, unfortunately i do not know what type it is but it looks simlilar to a chinese elm. I water it nearly every day and spray the branches every day. It is situated on my balcony outside and is in the sun for most of the day. I live in Bangkok so it does get humid at mid day.
There are new leaves growing but very slowly and they drop off after a few days. Should i prune the longer branches back, also do you know how to get photos on this website so i can show you the tree. I look forward to hearing advice,

User avatar
Gnome
Mod
Posts: 5122
Joined: Wed Jul 05, 2006 4:17 am
Location: Western PA USDA Zone 6A

edseb1977,

Welcome to the Helpful Gardener.

I water it nearly every day...I live in Bangkok so it does get humid at mid day.


It is possible that you are over-watering. With little or no foliage, water usage will be diminished. Has the soil been allowed to dry out at all? By this I do not mean when it was neglected, nor do I mean bone dry, but it cannot stay constantly wet either.

Can you describe the soil? Is it dense and organic or loose and gritty? Also, tell us a little more about your watering practices. Is the soil really drying each day or are you giving it a little each day to keep it constantly damp?

Please read this sticky for some tips on watering. There are also links there to more information.

do you know how to get photos on this website so I can show you the tree.
This site does not support uploading pictures directly, you must use a third party hosting service and link to you your pictures. Ynot has created an article with suggestions for taking better bonsai pictures, it can be found here. Within that article you will find a link to a short tutorial on getting pictures on the board.

Norm

edseb1977
Newly Registered
Posts: 2
Joined: Sat Nov 10, 2007 2:39 am
Location: Bangkok

bonsai leaves falling

thanks for such a quick response, yes i do keep the soil as damp as possible , watering every two days with a watering can. Should i leave the soil to dry for a few days ? i am not sure what type of soil i have but it has not been changed for around a year. Its looks pretty dense and organic though. still working on a photo.

User avatar
Gnome
Mod
Posts: 5122
Joined: Wed Jul 05, 2006 4:17 am
Location: Western PA USDA Zone 6A

edseb1977,

yes I do keep the soil as damp as possible... Should I leave the soil to dry for a few days ?
Yes, it must dry a little in between watering. Have you read the sticky thread I linked to? Tree roots need oxygen as well as water. By keeping the soil constantly wet you are excluding necessary oxygen.

A coarse, free draining soil helps to allow the soil to dry quicker, this in turn allows frequent watering without excluding oxygen. This might seem contradictory. How can I say that frequent watering is both good and bad?

With a loose soil, frequent watering brings with it fresh oxygen with each watering. With a heavy soil frequent watering never allows fresh oxygen to reach the roots. A good mix would be one that dries on a daily basis during the warmest part of the year. During cooler weather it would dry slower and thus require less frequent watering.

Norm

alexinoklahoma
Senior Member
Posts: 273
Joined: Mon Sep 03, 2007 12:21 pm
Location: Central Oklahoma

Fwiw, I have chatted with others in the 'orient' and they tell of how fast-draining soil is so much better with the high-humidity keeping 'thick organic' soil wet a long time (as gnome is saying). IMO -> lose that dense 'organic' stuff at first opportunity ;) The tree can only fail with releafing attempts a couple times before its exhausted and it dies...just a cautionary thing for you...leaves aren't limitless, and tree will be rather weak after a few 'failures to set leaves'. Do NOT prune anything off as that will take away any possible leaf-buds that may be present (make sense?)...

Alex

Return to “BONSAI FORUM”