Great question from Garry about whether it is necessary to re-pot a bonsai...

Garry says:

Hey, this may seem like a silly question, but i have just brought my first ever Bonsai tree a Oriental Lacebark Elm (Chinese Elm) and on the roots is some copper wire. Do i need to take this out or leave it?
Also im unsure if the Bonsai will ever need repotting and if so how do i tell when?

Bonsai Direct reply:

Hi Garry,
When we re-pot a bonsai we wire the bonsai into the pot.
This helps prevent the bonsai from rocking in the pot whilst the new roots become established.
We usually leave the wire because it holds the bonsai in the pot during transport and it is now entirely up to you whether you remove this or not. It has now done its job! There is absolutely no harm in leaving it there and it usually helps the bonsai.
All bonsai will need re-potting or root pruning at some stage to prevent the roots from getting pot bound.
I would recommend every other summer. If the bonsai has grown considerably please re-pot into a larger pot (you can also do this sooner if you would like the bonsai to get larger). However, if the bonsai looks fine in its current pot simply root prune slightly every other year and put some fresh bonsai soil around the root ball.
We have produced a DVD about re-potting and root pruning if you are a little daunted in 2 years time:—re-potting—root-pruning

Great question, many thanks.
I hope this helps
kind regards


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