Are you having problems with your bonsai?
If you think your bonsai is sick, compare its symptoms with the list of more common problems above.
Leaves are turning pale yellow and dropping off.
Leaves are mottled with yellow, brown and black spots.
Leaves are green, but crispy.
Leaves are pale green to yellow and new shoots are long and spindly.
Leaves are going black or brown, starting at the tips and slowly working down the leaf.
Mottling of the leaves…
…normally means that you have a pest on your bonsai. Spray with a non-systemic insecticide that kills a broad spectrum of pests , especially Red Spider Mite. Make sure you spray under the foliage and around the trunk. Spray again after ten days and then repeat after a further ten days. Always follow the instructions.
If the leaves remain green…
…but are dry and crispy, then your bonsai has dried out at some stage. This often results in the death of bonsai. To ascertain whether your tree is still alive, make a small cut at the base of the trunk in a couple of places. If there is green 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 until new shoots appear. Be patient as this may take a long time.
Long spindly shoots…
…with pale leaves usually mean that the bonsai is growing in a position where there is not enough light. Move it in to a brighter position avoiding direct sunlight all day. Prune back spindly shoots to the first pair of leaves on that shoot.