The leaves on my bonsai have gone dry and crispy - what should I do?

The leaves on my bonsai have gone crispy

Crispy leaves on your bonsai
If the leaves on your bonsai tree remain green, but are dry and crispy, then your bonsai has either dried out at some stage or it is in such a hot position that water cannot be transferred from the roots to the leaves quickly enough. Dry crispy bonsai leaves
This often results in the death of bonsai.
To ascertain whether your bonsai is still alive, make a small cut on the trunk or branches in a couple of places. If there is a green layer (Cambium layer) just under the bark then it is still alive, if it is brown, then sadly it is dead.
If there are still signs of life, then keep it cool and moist (just damp and not too wet) until new shoots appear. We recommend a bright position but out of direct sunlight. Be patient as this may take a long time.

If you ever notice that your bonsai has become too dry and the leaves have wilted please stand the bonsai in water, so that the water covers the entire pot for 10 minutes. Then return to checking the watering as normal and keep the soil damp. Please do not over-compensate by over-watering. If a bonsai dries out and drops its leaves it will actually need less water because it is not transpiring!



2 thoughts on “The leaves on my bonsai have gone dry and crispy - what should I do?”

  • Yvette

    Please help! I got a bonsai last summer and all through its first winter its leaves have been falling out and branches drying out. On the link there is photos of how it looks now at the end of winter. What should I do to save it?

    • bonsaidirect

      Hi Yvette,
      How frequently do you water your pepper bonsai? The soil looks very dry and I just wonder if this is a simple case of not watering frequently enough.
      For now please stand the bonsai in water so that the water covers the entire pot for 5mins. Does it bubble? Once it is well soaked - this will evenly rewet the entire root ball please then allow to drain. Then check daily for water and water well when the soil looks barely damp.
      I hope this helps
      kind regards

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