Do Bonsai Pots Need Drainage Holes

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You have done it! With patience, perseverance and a keen eye you have created a wonderful bonsai specimen. But not so fast! A final factor for your masterpiece is:

Do Bonsai Pots Need Drainage Holes

Do Bonsai Pots Need Drainage Holes

When it comes time to display your bonsai, don’t forget the container it will be placed in. Bonsai pots play as big a role in creating the “bonsai effect” as the trees themselves. When chosen correctly, they are the final piece of the puzzle – the complete cycle of compromise. (Plus, they keep your tree alive!)

Bonsai Grow Guide

This bonsai tree pot guide and FAQ will tell you everything you need to know so you can get started and choose your perfect pair.

When you’re just starting out, it helps to understand what makes bonsai pots different from your standard terracotta planter—and why that’s important. So before we teach you how to choose the perfect pot, answer some common questions for beginners.

Although bonsai tree pots don’t have to be forged from the volcanic rocks of the mountain. Fuji, there are several characteristics that make them better suited for bonsai than other containers.

Firstly, bonsai tree pots are designed to enhance the “bonsai effect”. That is, if chosen consciously, they add to the illusion that your tree was plucked from nature and is simply growing out of a tray. The right pot will highlight and complement the elements of balance and harmony that you have cultivated in your tree.

Bonsai Glazed Ceramic Shohin Pot 4 With Drain Hole

Second, bonsai tree pots are designed to meet the specific needs of the art form. They are fitted with appropriate wiring and drainage holes, designed to accommodate standard width and length requirements and are much shallower than traditional planters. Each of these components serves a practical purpose in bonsai tree care.

While shallow containers help dwarf young bonsai trees, they’re also helpful once you’ve reached your final style. Since trees with limited roots and soil grow more slowly, placing a “finished” bonsai in a shallow container helps to more easily get the shape you want.

In addition, flat containers are unobtrusive. You keep an eye on the tree and give the impression of looking at a perfectly resized nature photo.

Do Bonsai Pots Need Drainage Holes

While there are many varieties of bonsai tree pots, some higher-end products can offer new buyers sticker shock. Understand that the art of making bonsai pots is hundreds of years old and requires just as much mastery as growing a tree itself. While you don’t have to break the bank, choosing a quality, well-constructed pot is an essential part of the Practice of bonsai art.

Basics Of Bonsai Trees

You may have heard that a bonsai pot should complement the masculine or feminine aspects of the tree it’s in – but what does that mean?

Some tree traits are considered masculine: thick trunks, heavy branches, sharp angles, and dead wood. Others are considered feminine: rounded silhouettes, smooth bark or light color, thin stems and flowers.

Your tree’s root system should have some wiggle room underground. Choose a pot that leaves an inch between the root tips and the sides of the container, or do a root pruning before planting.

There’s no shortage of places to buy bonsai tree pots: online, in a local store, even at pottery conventions. But your local nursery is a great place to start your search for well-designed options. Take photos of your tree to share with the nursery staff so they can help you choose the perfect match.

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Bonsai tree pots are also available online, but beware: if the price seems too good to be true, it probably is. There’s a big difference between a poorly constructed pot and an unprofessional one, and it can make a big impact on the final look of your tree.

If you want to buy a container with the same care and affection that you gave your tree, we recommend purchasing a handmade bonsai tree pot. There are many talented artists practicing this craft and finding a pot or artist that you can identify with can be an exciting journey.

Do you have further questions about bonsai tree pots? Let’s continue the conversation in the comments below! Bonsai with us!

Do Bonsai Pots Need Drainage Holes

The Bonsai Resource Center is here to help you learn the best bonsai tree care and provides you with the tools you need to keep your tree healthy and strong. Discover our other items, visit our online store and connect with other bonsai lovers in our Facebook group to find out everything you need to know about this precious hobby! When I first heard that bonsai are commonly potted, I thought, “That sounds crazy – you’re kidding!”

How To Water Bonsai Trees

Over the years I have planted hundreds if not thousands of plants in wireless containers for a retail nursery. The practice sounded unusual and made me think that bonsai people were too preoccupied with such details.

One reason is that garden plants stay planted after planting. On the other hand, bonsai are often moved.

We move them year-round so all sides of the tree get the same amount of sunlight. We bring them to a work area when it’s time for trimming or wiring. If we join a bonsai club, we can bring our trees to workshops or exhibitions. All these movements give the bonsai ample opportunity to move around in the pot.

Because bonsai are often planted in coarse soil mixes, it doesn’t take much pressure to remove an unprotected bonsai from the pot. Large trees with underdeveloped roots can even be blown over by the wind if not properly secured.

Inch Terracotta Succulent Planter Pot, Clay Flower Pot Succulent Bonsai Planter Pot With Drainage Hole And Bamboo Tray For Indoor/outdoor Plants, Black

Even if our trees don’t move or blow much, the subtle movement of the tree in the pot can break fine roots and stress or weaken a bonsai. Before we can wire bonsai or carve dead wood, we need to make sure our trees are held securely in their containers.

Bonsai pots come in many shapes and sizes. However, almost all have drainage holes so that excess water can simply drain away. (If your bonsai pot doesn’t have drainage holes, it will be a lot easier to care for your trees if you drill one or two.)

Despite the wide variety of bonsai pots, we can generally divide pots into four categories based on the placement of the drainage holes or connection holes that are present.

Do Bonsai Pots Need Drainage Holes

Since there is only one hole, all the connecting wires are routed through it. Since the pot in this example is round, measure the circumference of the pot to determine the length of the mounting wires. Prepare two wires of this length.

Free Stl File Rectangular Modern Bonsai Pot

The size of the tying wire depends more on the shape of the pot than the number of holes in it. Therefore, for future reference, cut the tie wire for round pots measuring a circumference of the pot.

The next step is just apples with one-hole pots. Use heavier gauge wire to create the look of a bent needle.

If you carefully thread the ends of the twine through the mesh of the drainage screen, the prepared pot will look like the pot in the photos below.

Since it can be difficult to see the tie wires against the bonsai soil, I will demonstrate securing the prototype with a cloth stand.

Pcs Ceramic Bonsai Pot With Drainage Hole Succulent Planter/plant Pot/flower Pot/bonsai Pot

That’s it for securing bonsai in one-hole pots. This approach is not as safe as the approaches below, but it is the best way to care for a tree where only one drainage hole is available.

Some pots have a third hole in between the two holes shown above, but the connection procedure remains the same.

Start by measuring two lengths of tie wire equal to the sum of two long sides and one short side of the pot.

Do Bonsai Pots Need Drainage Holes

Next, pre-bend the connecting wires and insert them into the drainage holes, holding the wires snugly on the inside edges to prevent the screen from moving when the wires are tightened.

Brussel’s Bonsai 1 Quart Green Ceramic Planter With Drainage Holes In The Pots & Planters Department At

The finished product is similar to the One Hole Pot finished product, but the approach is more secure as there are two anchor points instead of one.

The most common question that comes up with three hole pots is which hole gets two wires instead of one. Here’s how to find out.

First, decide which side of the pot you want to be in front. Next, determine whether the tree continues to the left or to the right. If the tree continues to the right, the hole with two wires should be on the right. If the tree continues to the left, the hole with two wires should be on the left. The tray below is wired for left-leaning bonsai.

There are two ways to connect the wires in three-hole pots. The first option is to connect each pair of wires in the middle like you did for the two hole pot.

Brussel’s Bonsai 2 Quart Purple Ceramic Planter With Drainage Holes In The Pots & Planters Department At

For extra security – especially recommended for cascading or semi-cascading bonsai – tie the wires closer to the holes with one wire at a time. This is what this approach looks like.

This approach allows us to join the ends of each pair of wires together for added strength. Since this point is the strongest connection, it is used to counteract the weight of the cascading branches on the other side of the tree.

The tree-hole approach above can cause some confusion when doing arithmetic

Do Bonsai Pots Need Drainage Holes

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