New to bonsai recently bought a Ligustrum

haynic14

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Hi

About a month ago I bought a Ligustrum small 4 year old bonsai, the pot was too small and it didnt have the correct soil so 2 weeks after I bought it I change the pot for the next size up after reading up on it on the internet, I removed carefully the soil around the roots without breaking them and placed it in the new pot. About a week ago the leaves started to go crispy and drop off.

I wondering whether its dried out at one point and didnt like it or it is getting over the shock of being repotted? there are new shoots on various little branches and its still green just under the bark.

Thanks
Nicole
 
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tnaz71

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Nicole,

A lot of factors could be the cause. First are you keeping it outside, or inside? In shade, part sun, full sun? What is the soil your using? Free draining? or is it retaining a lot of water? How much are you watering? Are all the leaves dying or just some? Did you cut any roots off? Lastly where did you buy it? If it's a walmart type tree you were probably doomed from the start.

I would put it in part shade/full shade for a few weeks keep the soil moist but not wet & hope for the best.
 

haynic14

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Hi

Im keeping it inside, in the shade, the soil I am using it for bonsai trees im not sure of the mix without going to my garage and having a look. It is free draining and I'm watering it every 2 or more days when it appears to be dry (I am also using a chopstick as a guide for wet/dry). Just some of the leaves are drying out. I didn't cut any roots off when I repotted as a website i read said not to as it was a tree I got from tesco (like walmart) and that those types of plants aren't planted in bonsai soil etc so should be repotted.
 
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Your problem is over watering and being inside... Plants inside yikes!!! Problem with plants inside is that they don't encounter all the things that plants on the outside do... sun, wind, humidity, etc. So they are like zombies, partial alive, and part dead. Slow your watering down to about once a week if inside. Ligustrums will tell you we they need water, the leaves will start to droop. Be carefull though that you keep an eye on them, don't neglect for days at a time, cause sometimes it will sneak up on you. I have mine outside here in florida in the partial to full sun and I only water every 2 day. I would say 90 percent of indoor plant deaths are from excess water and root rot. When possible try to start easing it outside, be careful though it's like when you "Brits" go to the beach and forget your suntan lotion, the tree hasn't seen the sun in a while and will fry... put it in the shade for a couple of weeks, then partial shade, etc. At which time the tree will begin to tell you it needs more water, and remember to reverse the process in winter. The thing about Bonsai, is that you are modifiying and altering a living thing, and it needs time to adjust, so small changes, more trees have been lost by panic and drastic measures. Good luck, I think you will be just fine. Man, haven't seen the inside of a tesco's in some time, I lived in London, Earls Court for a while, and have family outside of Birmingham...
 

Zach Smith

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Hi

About a month ago I bought a Ligustrum small 4 year old bonsai, the pot was too small and it didnt have the correct soil so 2 weeks after I bought it I change the pot for the next size up after reading up on it on the internet, I removed carefully the soil around the roots without breaking them and placed it in the new pot. About a week ago the leaves started to go crispy and drop off.

I wondering whether its dried out at one point and didnt like it or it is getting over the shock of being repotted? there are new shoots on various little branches and its still green just under the bark.

Thanks
Nicole

This bonsai does need to go outside, but you may be fortunate in that ligustrum species are very tough to kill and privet at least has a defense mechanism whereby it will shed its leaves when dried out in order to save itself. Wait a week or two and you should get some new growth.

Good luck.

Zach
 

haynic14

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Hi everyone

It would appear that my bonsai have survived after putting it outside and giving it some drop fertiliser it has stopped shedding its leaves and started growing again with buds appearing over it :)

woo thank you all for your help. Any suggestions of root hormone growth fertiliser's?

p.s I'll upload a photo soon
 
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just me... there are others that might disagree, I would not do much in the way of fertilizing ... I would just nurse it back to health, carefull with to much watering untill the leaves come in. Then let it grow the remainder of the year, and plan next year's attack...
 

haynic14

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Thats great thank you, i will leave it for now then and start planning my next attack hehe :)

here is one of the pictures i look the lighting isn't too good but ill keep trying to add the other.
 

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jk_lewis

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Well, fertilizer happens to be necessary for plant health. Yes you need to nurse it back to health, but fertilizer will be part of that. It is not medicine for a plant, but it is (in a way) food.

Moderate fertilization, sunlight, and water in the right amount (let it dry between waterings) are what you need to bring a tree back to health.

Then, some pictures will help us advise about making it into a bonsai.
 

haynic14

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JKL

Thats great thank you for the advice thats what I was thinking it would need, which is what I have been doing since its got better.

A better close up picture
 

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haynic14

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Here's some of the new growth too
 

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yes, one would agree that fertilizer helps aid and contribute to a trees overall health... one would also note, that a tree that has just recovered from shock is still quite vunerable, and to heavy on the fertilizer might send it back. The reason I suggested not fertilizing was that because, "bonsai trees" from a store like tesco's (grocery store), usually are not planted in a bonsai soil, they are usually planted in a either normal soil or a peat based. This type of soil will for the time being have enough nutrients to carry the tree through... when the tree has returned to it's former glory, than sure fertilize away!!!
just my opinion...
 

haynic14

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Yes that is true, I also 2 weeks after having the tree I repotted and put new soil in for bonsai's after speaking with my fathers friend who has had several bonsai's for many years, but the fertilizer i have given it i have only been giving it a few drops which has helped its health return as before i put it on it was going even after putting it out. :)
 

haynic14

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Hi everyone

Here are some more pictures of my Bonsai which appears after its fertilising has got back to complete health and loves it etc
 

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haynic14

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As you see iv now got a plan for the shape of the Bonsai and the next level that I'm planning to grow from the right side of the Bonsai tree which is good. What do you guys think of the structure and direction I'm taking the Bonsai in?

Regards
Nicole
 

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