Chinese Elm Care Information

The success of your bonsai depends on a variety of factors, most notably watering and light. Below are some species specific guidelines to follow that will help ensure that your bonsai will stay healthy and happy.

Pruning Tips:
The Chinese Elm bonsai can be easily trained and pruned using the clip and grow method. We recommend making the cuts at least 4-5 pairs down from new shoots. This will ensure that there is wood in the branch to promote new bud growth. Directional pruning techniques can be used to fill out pad layers. The Chinese Elm Bonsai tree constantly rotates leaves and sprouts new buds as old ones fall. This occurs most frequently when acclimating to new temperatures.

We recommend fertilizing your tree every month with a bonsai fertilizer. Time release granules are the easiest to use and can be added every season. Reduce the amount of fertilizer during the winter. Take care to not over-fertilize as this can cause your leaves to burn.

Chinese Elm Bonsai trees thrive best with natural sunlight. We recommend filtered natural sunlight. Full sun can lead to slight leaf burn.

Temperature Requirements:
Chinese Elms prefer warmer climates. Due to their deciduous nature, they may lose their leaves during the winter. Leaves and bud growth will appear in the spring after dormancy. For very cold climates, Chinese elms can be brought indoors or overwintered.

Watering Requirements:
Chinese Elm Bonsai require moderate watering. We recommend using a soft spray to soak the soil. Ensure that water penetrates not only the topsoil but also into the roots by checking that draining is occuring on the bottom of the pot.

Chinese Elms can be repotted during spring and fall for highest success rates. Avoid winter repotting as colder temperatures will make it harder for roots to recover. During repotting, we recommend trimming off older roots to promote new growth. Repot your elm as the tree outgrows the pot. Depending on the growth rate, this can be every 2-3 years.

Indoor / Outdoor:
Chinese Elms can be placed in both indoor and outdoor environments. During the winter, we recommend bringing the tree indoors to protect against frost damage.