bonsaibegin
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Joined: Thu Apr 20, 2017 2:09 pm

8yr Old Chinese Elm Bonsai - Dying as soon as I received it

Hello All,

I just got my first own office space. To accompany it, i've asked my assistant to order a Bonsai. I believe this Bonsai has been raised outside.

It arrived while I was not here in decent shape:
https://www.dropbox.com/s/b8xa7q1ygotef ... 7.jpg?dl=0

However over the past few days the leaves have started to dry, shrivel up and fall:

https://www.dropbox.com/s/s27htbp5hd4ak ... 3.JPG?dl=0
https://www.dropbox.com/s/tsrory447v5qg ... 5.JPG?dl=0
https://www.dropbox.com/s/gw4rp33ietv66 ... 9.JPG?dl=0


I've been keep up with the watering to try to recover the soil without over watering it. I've put it by the window which gets around 6-7 hours direct sunlight every day.

Could this just be an initial shock to be moved inside? what am I doing wrong?

Thanks in advance!

Nick
Last edited by bonsaibegin on Fri Apr 21, 2017 2:39 pm, edited 1 time in total.

imafan26
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Posts: 11124
Joined: Tue Jan 01, 2013 1:32 pm
Location: hawaii, zone 12a 587 ft elev.

Re: First Time Bonsai - Arrived very dry

The leaves in the picture don't look that bad. If the bonsai was ordered from a reputable company, you should be able to get advice by calling them. Care instructions should have come with the bonsai. I hope the company guarantees the plant if it dies.

The soil may have been dry but the leaves should not have been. Most places will ship the plants overnight or by two day air. If your company is a large one, it may have spent more time getting through the office mail system. If you do order plants it is best to have them ordered to be delivered to your home so it will get opened right away.

Bonsai are high light plants but most plants do not like to be up against a window. The glass magnifies the sun and can burn the leaves. Usually 18 inches from a window is better. Not knowing the light conditions the bonsai came from and if the bonsai was in a package for a few days, I would have conditioned it to the location a little slower. If your office is air conditioned, a humidity tray may be needed.
I can't tell for sure what it is, do you know what kind of tree it is? It looks like an aralia but I am not sure.

I can't blame your assistant very much. It is hard for someone to get something that they are not familiar with. There is a permanent bonsai exhibit in Barcelona. They have a contact number.

Otherwise I would look for a bonsai club in Barcelona and try to contact them or bring the plant to a meeting if it is an open meeting and try to get some advice to take care of it.
http://www.bonsaizen.es/en/spanish-bonsai-associations/
http://museuciencies.cat/en/que-passa-a ... xhibition/
Happy gardening in Hawaii. Gardens are where people grow.

bonsaibegin
Newly Registered
Posts: 3
Joined: Thu Apr 20, 2017 2:09 pm

Re: First Time Bonsai - Arrived very dry

imafan26 wrote:The leaves in the picture don't look that bad. If the bonsai was ordered from a reputable company, you should be able to get advice by calling them. Care instructions should have come with the bonsai. I hope the company guarantees the plant if it dies.

The soil may have been dry but the leaves should not have been. Most places will ship the plants overnight or by two day air. If your company is a large one, it may have spent more time getting through the office mail system. If you do order plants it is best to have them ordered to be delivered to your home so it will get opened right away.

Bonsai are high light plants but most plants do not like to be up against a window. The glass magnifies the sun and can burn the leaves. Usually 18 inches from a window is better. Not knowing the light conditions the bonsai came from and if the bonsai was in a package for a few days, I would have conditioned it to the location a little slower. If your office is air conditioned, a humidity tray may be needed.
I can't tell for sure what it is, do you know what kind of tree it is? It looks like an aralia but I am not sure.

I can't blame your assistant very much. It is hard for someone to get something that they are not familiar with. There is a permanent bonsai exhibit in Barcelona. They have a contact number.

Otherwise I would look for a bonsai club in Barcelona and try to contact them or bring the plant to a meeting if it is an open meeting and try to get some advice to take care of it.
http://www.bonsaizen.es/en/spanish-bonsai-associations/
http://museuciencies.cat/en/que-passa-a ... xhibition/
Thank you very much for your time to post.

Apparently there was some issues with the delivery and I imagine the plant was kept boxed for more than 3 days.

The tree is an 8 year old Orne de Chine (french name). The company we bought it from has not been responsive to my questions.

imafan26
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Posts: 11124
Joined: Tue Jan 01, 2013 1:32 pm
Location: hawaii, zone 12a 587 ft elev.

Re: 8yr Old Chinese Elm Bonsai - Dying as soon as I received

If it was 4-5 days in a box it would need to be trained to the bright light. It could be one of the problems. 5 days without water would also have been a stressor. Orme de chine does translate to Chinese Elm.

We do have them here but it is not one that I have grown or am familiar with.

These might be helpful.

http://www.bonsaiboy.com/catalog/elmcare.html
http://www.bonsaitoolchest.com/v/vspfil ... se-elm.pdf
https://www.bonsaiempire.com/blog/revive-dying-bonsai

It sounds like the bonsai may have been in box and probably not watered for about 5-6 days.

When you watered, did you soak the tree. Chinese elm cannot get really dry . If the soil was really dry, you have to water it well. Bonsai don't have a lot of soil so not a lot of water reserves. If the center of the rootball was really dry and you only watered until the outside looked moist the center could still be dry .

Try soaking the pot in a bucket of water until the bubbles stop. The plant soil should be thoroughly moistened then. Take the tree out and let it drip dry on a rack but do not let it sit in a saucer full of water.

Chinese elm is a high light plant but given that it was in a box for 5 days or more, it may have been a little too much light too soon and that could burn some leaves.

Scratch the bark with your finger and see if the inner bark is still alive. If it is then maybe there is still a chance to save it. You will have to remove any branches that look dead and the dead leaves.

Pay attention to the tutorial on how to water your plant. Over and underwatering are the major causes of plant failures.

If the roots and inner bark is still intact and the tree was taken care of in time, and taken good care of from this point forward it may take a while but could come back.
Happy gardening in Hawaii. Gardens are where people grow.

bonsaibegin
Newly Registered
Posts: 3
Joined: Thu Apr 20, 2017 2:09 pm

Re: 8yr Old Chinese Elm Bonsai - Dying as soon as I received

Thanks for the replies.

I have taken the plant home and given it a shower to thoroughly soak through the soil. I believe the soil was drying out because it wasn't being properly watered.

I've moved the plant outside on my balcony which will receive a lot more light than in my office window.

I've checked the bark and it's still green and alive.

Doing my best to turn around the fate of this chinese elm! will keep you posted.

TechnologistX
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Posts: 7
Joined: Fri May 05, 2017 6:26 pm

Re: 8yr Old Chinese Elm Bonsai - Dying as soon as I received

I have a Chinese Elm about the same age as yours. It did the same thing when I first got the tree. I thought it was going to die. It lost all its leaves but within about 2 weeks it exploded with new growth. Don't give up on it their very tough trees and it should make a comeback. Just make sure to let it dry out between waterings or the roots with begin to rot.

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