Japanese maple bonsai trees are one of the most highly sought after forms of bonsai.
These are highly decorative ornamental trees of small stature and they have good branching that is often sought out for bonsai and a striking appearance most usually of red or purple.
These trees are native to Japan, China and Korea and are suitable only as bonsai for outdoors. Please do not attempt to keep these as indoor bonsai trees.
When you are selecting your Japanese maple bonsai tree, there are several things that you will want to keep in mind.
First, the Japanese maple bonsai tree can be one of hundreds of different species of Japanese maple. Because of this, you will want to research the specific classes of trees and learn how they grow.
Some maples are best suited for larger bonsai settings, with trunks of three to four inches that exclusively live outdoors. Others are more suitable for smaller bonsai. Typically, Japanese maple bonsai trees are best suited for mid range to larger bonsai with trunks ranging between one and four inches in diameter.
There are some disadvantages to using Japanese maple bonsai trees in your designs. In many of the trees, particularly landscape bonsai that live outdoors, it can take ten to twenty years to get the tree to the stage where it is ready to be designed.
This time frame can often turn people away from designing Japanese maple bonsai. However, there are other types of trees that you can tend to that have a shorter grow period, letting your Japanese maple mature until it is ready to be designed into the forms that you desire.
If you are planning to work with dwarf Japanese maple bonsai trees, you will need to learn leaf trimming and pruning techniques to ensure the proper growth and design of your maple.
Unlike larger trees, dwarf Japanese maple bonsai are particularly sensitive to how they are trimmed. If you prune the wrong branches, you can negatively impact the growth of your plant. As the dwarf plants require more care than their larger counterparts, improper care can result in the shortened life span of your plant, or leaf sizes too large for your bonsai design. If your leaves or nodes grow too large, you will not be able to correct this until the next growing season at the earliest.
Be aware that you should repot Japanese maple bonsai trees once every two years and prune the roots thoroughly. Root growth is likely to be strong and the pot will be totally filled. Use a well-drained soil with a high pumice mix.
Japanese maple bonsai can live for hundreds of years with the proper care. Given this fact, it is not uncommon to see these types of trees being passed down from generation to generation.
Certain pests can affect Japanese maples and these include aphids, scale and beetles. A healthy specimen should be able to defend itself against any such attack, but severe outbreaks will require special attention. So it is important to be vigilant.
If you own a Japanese maple bonsai tree, you will want to ensure that whoever will care for it next learns the proper care methods to ensure the lasting survival of the tree or all your hard work will be in vain.