tandy
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Help with my Fukien Tea Plant

Two weeks ago I purchased a Fukien Bonsai plant. The dealer told me it was from Texas and was six years old. He said water it once a week and in a year change the soil. He was oriental and his english was not good, so that was all I got out of him. I had it 3 days the soil seemed dry so i watered it until the water ran out the drain hole. The next day the leaves started to fall off and now there are none left on it. There are tiny green shoots? or leaves coming out on it so I am hoping that I did not kill it. I do not know what happened and have been reading everything I can about it. Any help from any of you would be apriciated. tandy
beeman sw virginia

linlaoboo
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Location: NJ

The longest I was able to keep a FT alive was 2 years. We see many FT problems on this site as well. It's just not a tree for beginners weather the oriental guy's English is bad or not you should have done the research before you bought the tree. You said the tree is from TX but you didn't say where you keep the tree now. The tree orginates from Fujian, China just so you know and it's humid and hot there.

It's quite normal for its leaves to fall off whenever conditions aren't ideal. Look into how you are watering as well as getting bonsai soil and repotting after the tree settles in. If you just got it 2 weeks ago maybe it's just adjusting to its new environment.
ficus, maple, elm, juniper, pine

tandy
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Location: usa

Thank you for the quick reply. I bought the plant at a roadside set up for bonsai's on a whim as I was driving by. Some times I don't research every thing I do. I think I needed reasurance that leaf dropping is somewhat normal and perhaps can be overcome. Thanks again.
beeman sw virginia

linlaoboo
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hopefully someone more experienced can offer more clues but without a picture it's hard to tell what condition it's really in, what kind of soil, etc. I see you are from SW virginia. If yours isn't flowering all the times, it's a sure sign that it's not healthy. It should have tiny white flowers year round, they last a day or 2 before withering.
ficus, maple, elm, juniper, pine

tandy
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Thank you! Leaves are starting to grow back. No flowers. I'm thinking they might not come out until I have leaves. Does the Fiscus need seasons? Should some cold temps be used on it or do I need to try to maintain a constant environment? Thanks!!
beeman sw virginia

tandy
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My Fukien

My fukien bansai had to be left as I had a trip. When I returned 5 days later it appeared completely dead. I had read on a blog about checking the soil of a new plant, but had been afraid to tamper with it. Now I felt I had nothing to lose. I removed the tree and the soil was rock hard. I scraped all of it out of the pot and put some gravel in the bottom, trimmed the ragged parts off the roots and replaced the soil with sand, soil, and mulch. I soaked it with water. The leaves are starting to come back out. I am going to start feeding it and hope for the best. If this works I can thank your blogs, as I am completely clueless.
beeman sw virginia

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Tandy,

I don't grow this species so I will speak in generalities. When soil is that compacted it is often difficult to water the plant to its core. This leads to the old adage to water bonsai three times, this ensures that the soil is properly saturated. In a more free draining soil this is not such an issue but you still want to water thoroughly each time.

WRT fertilization, the common wisdom is not to fertilize a stressed tree, not everyone agrees with this however. This brief article should shed some light. The relevant portion is about 3/4 of the way down but you should read it all. In fact Brent's website should be requisite reading for every beginner.

https://www.evergreengardenworks.com/fertiliz.htm

Norm

tandy
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Joined: Mon Jul 18, 2011 3:42 pm
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Thanks Norm! a very informative piece.
beeman sw virginia

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