The world around us is truly wonderful, and trees can give an amazing insight into our history, culture, and I believe, our future.
How to Take Care of a Bonsai Tree Kept Indoors
Sep 12, 2014  |   Tree Science  |   No Comments

How to Take Care of a Bonsai Tree Kept Indoors

Taking care of a bonsai tree is not actually as hard as you might think.  The main thing to remember is that bonsai are always planted in very small plant pots, so there are a few guidelines and tips that you should follow in terms of watering, feeding (fertilization) and the potting of bonsai trees.

This article gives you some very brief information about how care and look after your bonsai tree so that it lives a long life and blooms to its full potential. Please visit a specialist bonsai website if you want really detailed information as I can only give you the basics.

Very Simple and Basic Bonsai Maintenance

Because bonsai trees are so much more delicate and fragile than your average indoor plant or tree, then you need to implement a few basics.  By following these you be should to take care of your small tree properly. The most important aspect is the watering, fertilizer and choosing the correct location to keep it so that it lives a long life.

Watering Your Bonsai Tree

The frequency with which your bonsai tree needs to be given water will depend on quite a few different and varied factors.  This includes aspects such as the tree species, the size of it, and the climate that you live in, or keep it in. Make sure that you water the bonsai tree at least a couple of times a day, but also monitor and water it when you see the earth has become dry and arid.  The earth in the plant pot should be moist at all times. And when you water, water very thoroughly.

bonsais tree

A Beautiful and Healthy Bonsai Tree

Using Fertilizer for Your Bonsai Tree

Because bonsai are usually placed in small pots, regular feeding is necessary to renew the nutrients that are essential to the tree’s growth and vitality. Using a special bonsai fertilizer is sometimes recommended, but I have noticed that any standard off the shelf fertilizer will do exactly the same job to the same standards.  Be careful to follow the package instructions on the fertilizer dosages and frequencies though so not to poison your bonsai tree.

The Importance of Location, Light, and Climate Temperature

Choosing the best location within which to keep your bonsai tree is crucial to their well-being and future growth. Always look to make sure that the indoor tree is put somewhere that is warm on a constant temperature.  Most bonsai tree species prefer a bright place, usually with at least some direct sun onto the leaves, branches, and trunks.

Additional Advice for Bonsai Tree Care

For more information please visit the excellent website called allthingsbonsai.co.uk.  This UK based Bonsai website has everything that you would ever wish to know about caring for Bonsai trees and comes highly recommended!

I got the image of a bonsai from Flickr – copyright and credit to this guy here: www.flickr.com/photos/spengler

How do Trees Grow: A Little Science
Sep 12, 2014  |   Tree Science  |   No Comments

How do Trees Grow: A Little Science

Over the years, a tree will not just grow in the height – it will also get gradually thicker. How do they do it? Why do they grow to a full length or only grows in certain places? Why do they thicken in some places, or only the outside of the trunk? How can they suck up water pathways and nutrients to keep up with the growth? And why hollow trees often live longer?

A tree trunk consists of millions and millions of cells. Length and diameter growth are essentially based only on a proliferation of these cells; but both length and thickness growth, going in completely different ways. Linear growth is limited to a small area at the stem tip; so it extends not to the whole plant. We can easily see this when we make a mark on the trunk: You always remains at the same height. A cut in the bark is found even after decades in the same place.

The tree’s tissue constantly produces new cells, but itself remains at the top, always at the top of the shoot tip. In the same proportion as the extended shoot, this tissue formation stretches into the air. Just below the tip, the cells get ready for their future tasks: to serve to fuel (as in water) line or to take responsibility for the growth of new shoots, and so on.

Herbaceous plants can quickly reach the final thickness on their stem axis. Other trees and shrubs on the other hand can take years for the trunk and branches to reach maximum thickness.

There is a small opening formed in the wood of trees in a zone between the bark and wood.  This is called the cambium and is extremely active most of the year as large quantities of wood cells move to the inside, with a few cortical cells moving to the outside. As a result, the inner growth lags behind the growth of wood bark.

The cells of wood and bark have very different tasks. The wood consists of setting agents, water supply and storage tissue. In this case, most of the wood no longer lives. Only in the vicinity of formative tissue you can still find living wood cells – especially memory cells. Therefore, one can in old, hollow trees, where the pathways are still reasonably intact near the bark, replace the bearing wood safely through a cement filling, as indeed happens again and again. The tree can then still live on for decades.

The bark is used for the management of organic nutrients. Outside, it creates a tissue from the thickened cells, to form the bark as a protective coat. These cork cells die soon after their formation. The outer part of the bark is dead; only the inner part, which serves the tissue and cell transport actually lives.

Where the climate changes with the seasons, the bark and wood-forming activity in the cambium, is not active all year round. In the autumn, the cell formation ceases and then happens again in the spring. The cells formed in the spring months are relatively thin-walled and spacious; they can manage large amounts of water and pass around the large amounts of water which is required for the growing parts of the tree. Later in cells are produced, which are thick-walled and narrow; This provides greater strength in the wood. The different cell shape leads many tree species to leave a sharp boundary between old and new wood – this is where you can see rings when you cut into trees on a cross-section cut.

Many thanks to this person for the image used in the header: https://www.flickr.com/photos/15216811@N06