andreaneedshelp
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Help! Bonsai lost all leaves - need guidance

Hello All

I inherited a Bonsai and don't know much about it at all. The tag that came with it said Buddha Pine, but judging by the leaves and the pictures I see of Buddha Pine's I don't know that that ID is accurate.

Recently, my Bonsai has lost all it's leaves. I had it all winter on a window sill and it was generally happy - grew a lot of leaves (I inherited the tree in a bad state) and was generally well. Since the hotter weather has started, it has been less healthy. It was on the window beneath an AC system and I thought that might be the problem so I moved it into my bedroom on the windowsill. Bedroom has no AC, is generally hot and doesn't get much direct sun. I have put plant food pellets and checked the soil. It seemed very dry when I stuck a toothpick in to see how the soil was doing. I watered it well today, put it in a dish with some water on the bottom, and placed it back on the original windowsill.




Please help! This is a very important bonsai and I want to save it!
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andreaneedshelp
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Re: Help! Bonsai lost all leaves - need guidance

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GardeningCook
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Re: Help! Bonsai lost all leaves - need guidance

Sorry, & I do hate to be the voice of doom, but that bonsai is definitely dead.
My body is a temple. Unfortunately, it's a fixer-upper.

andreaneedshelp
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Re: Help! Bonsai lost all leaves - need guidance

Thank you for your response. How do you know that it is dead? Not debating, just curious.

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GardeningCook
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Re: Help! Bonsai lost all leaves - need guidance

Okay - I revise my decision. Not dead yet, but definitely looking on its way out. "Buddha Pine" is a variety of podocarpus, which is a soft-needled evergreen. Also known as Chinese Yew. You can keep it indoors for periods of time, but it's happiest living outdoors. One thing you do NOT want to do is feed a plant that's looking stressed/under-the-weather, as that can stress it even more. You also do not want to overwater it, OR leave it to sit in a dish of water. Bonsai trays always have a layer of pebbles in them to keep the pot above any collected water. They're meant to increase humidity only, not pot moisture.

If I were you, unless you can put outdoors in a sheltered spot, I'd keep the plant where it was last "happy" & see what happens.
My body is a temple. Unfortunately, it's a fixer-upper.

andreaneedshelp
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Re: Help! Bonsai lost all leaves - need guidance

Thank you again for your response, and for giving me a little hope. You are being very helpful!

I will definitely take your advice. Re:not feeding the tree, should I brush away the new food I put into the soil then?

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GardeningCook
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Re: Help! Bonsai lost all leaves - need guidance

Yes, I would brush the food away. When/if the tree starts to put out new green growth, then you can think about feeding. BUT - you will want to use a urea-free bonsai fertilizer - not regular plant fertilizer.
My body is a temple. Unfortunately, it's a fixer-upper.

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