Repotting Specimen Bonsai Trees
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Transplanting your bonsai tree should happen every 2-3 years in order to replenish the soil nutrients, prevent bound roots and soil compaction. If your bonsai is starting to look unhealthy and the soil is not holding water as well as it once did, you likely need to repot. Repotting is an easy process.
The crepe myrtle below was gently removed from its container. The roots and soil are very compact.
Using your fingers or a small hand rake, gently break apart the soil and separate the roots. You will want to remove about a quarter of the root growth.
Once most of the soil is removed from the root ball, you are ready to repot. You can place it back in the existing container or choose a new container. Fill the bottom of the container with a good nutrient rich soil. Use a chopstick or your fingers to firmly press the soil under and around the tree. You want soil line to come to the same level on the trunk as it was previous planted. Water the soil through once it is planted to remove any air pockets and continue to fertilize on your previous schedule.
Below you can see our collection of trees we have repotted into our existing metal containers and new containers. Remember that your trees will go through a dormancy period. Some are deciduous and some are evergreen. A general rule is to place the tree in a garage or cold spot from Thankgiving through the end of February, lightly watering and without fertilizer. Your trees will be dormant at this time. In the spring, bring them back into the sun and watch them continue to grow. Take care to prune as needed.