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The gardenia bonsai: white flowers and green leaves
Outdoor bonsai able to live without problems even inside an apartment, the gardenia bonsai is characterized by green leaves and white flowers. Coming from tropical areas, it suffers in particular the cold: therefore, with the arrival of the winter season it must be placed in a closed environment, or in an unheated greenhouse, to prevent its roots, usually protected by a quantity of soil reduced, exposed to dangerous frosts. As summer approaches, however, the plant can be returned to the outside. Gardenia bonsai loves unventilated but airy, discreetly lit locations, away from heat sources. Since it prefers the conditions of humidity, it must be watered in every season of the year, obviously without exaggerating, adapting the frequency and intensity of the interventions to the climate, to the state of the soil, to the season, to the growth of the plant. In the course of the growing season, however, a greater quantity of water is needed compared to the vegetative rest. The watering operation, which must be carried out gradually and slowly, should not be carried out too frequently: the risk would be to drop the buds. Water should be administered with the utmost caution, so that the soil is able to hold it. Concerning fertilization, gardenia bonsai, as well as numerous species of flower bonsai, needs a fertilizer based on phosphorus and potassium, for a fertilization that must take place from early spring to late autumn, for the period of whole vegetation , suspending it however in August and during flowering.
Which fertilizer to use
It is advisable to use liquid fertilizer, diluting it in the water of the watering once a month, but also the granular fertilizer carries out its task discreetly, also because it is characterized by a slower absorption. It is important to remember to wet the soil before fertilizing, so as not to damage the roots. In order for the gardenia bonsai to acquire the desired shape, the bonsai art is applied through pruning interventions. In particular, the training pruning, which has the purpose of improving the overall harmony of the plant's forms, must be implemented shortly before the vegetative rest begins, while there are no special indications, in terms of timing, for the maintenance interventions, aimed at establishing the results obtained, which can be carried out at any time. Of course, to prune a gardenia bonsai there is a need for strictly disinfected tools, or you risk infecting the branches and therefore the plant: the wounds caused (the cuts must be clean and firm) should be treated with a special healing cream, excellent barrier for parasites as well as a device that speeds up healing. What is the best soil for gardenia bonsai? A mixture composed of half peat and sand in equal parts and half of universal soil will be perfect, remembering to carry out the repotting at least once every two years (but preferably annually) in order to favor the correct development of the root system .
With the repotting, in fact, we proceed to replace the vase that houses the plant with a slightly larger pot (and if necessary, of different material and shape than the previous one) in order to guarantee optimal oxygenation to the substrate. Repotting should be done in spring: as the bonsai grows, this intervention can be spread over time, until it is repotted every three or four years for an adult gardenia bonsai. It is not said, however, that there is a need to intervene on the roots, which are usually sufficiently thin, albeit rather intertwined: in short, it could be enough to lay them out without incisively scaling them down. It is necessary to remember, instead, to protect the drainage holes with gravel or a grid before the soil is poured into the vessel, so that the drainage water does not drag any parts of the soil with it, even if it is small. This type of protection also represents a fundamental barrier for animal and plant parasites. As with all bonsai, also for gardenia bonsai it could be useful to use tie rods, weights and wires to change the posture of the trunk and branches. Interventions with the guardians must be carried out during the vegetative period, that is when the corrections are received more easily, always paying attention to the branches and the bark of the trunk, which must be protected at the anchoring points.
Gardenia Bonsai: Pests
Finally, it is worth pointing out the most dangerous enemies for this plant: animal parasites such as flakes, aphids, red spider and root lice can create problems, and their appearance must be prevented by specific anti-parasitic interventions, possibly in combination with mixed white oil. In case the scale insects cause whitish incrustations, they can be eliminated simply by using a toothbrush, perhaps after having sprayed a few drops of linseed oil on the leaves.