Bonsai tree pruning is one the hardest and also one of the most rewarding tasks you are faced with when growing any form of bonsai. You need to remember that the bonsai tree itself is not a dwarf variety of a full size tree but is actually a full sized tree that has been forced to grow as an exact miniature replica of itself.
Your tree will need to be nurtured and the of course the soil it is planted in and the amount of watering will need to be carefully monitored to make sure that it is properly cared for. Many people would regard a bonsai tree as a work of art and living history.
Bonsai Tree Pruning can be carried out with your fingertips and can prove to be a delicate and quite time consuming practice. The new growth needs to be shaped or cut away depending on how quickly the tree is sprouting. The branches of the tree will have to be supported as you prune away the newer growth but, be cautious as it is quite easy to accidently remove an entire branch and cause long term damage to your bonsai tree.
It takes a bit of patience and practice as you it is essential that you are very gentle when pruning your bonsai tree. Sometimes it is worth taking the time to practice on an ordinary small bush or pot plant so that the procedure becomes easier to carry out.
For harder bonsai trees such as Maples or Elms you can use household scissors for pruning. You can start pruning them by cutting away the leaves so that newer growth is cut back.
To give your bonzai tree it’s basic form then it is essential that you prune back the leaves and roots, you need to proceed with care though as pruning affects the health of your bonsai tree so you can never afford to be heavy handed.
While the tree has fewer leaves and branches it will of course be less able to absorb the nutrients it needs to survive so it may be wise to feed the tree after pruning. Cutting the roots t far back may leave the tree unable to to take iin enough nutrients it it could eventually die.
Make sure you keep an regular watch over your bonsai tree. Every 2 years or so check the growth of the roots, roots can expand quite fast and if not pruned properly your tree may become potbound and in this statte the roots will not be able to efficiently absorb the nutrients that the tree needs
Use Scissors to trim the roots back (usually about ½” will be sufficient).. This will aid in eliminating older roots and alow for the new rooots to develop. As needed the tree should be re-potted to avoid the bonsai tree becoming stagnant and stunted.
When you have succeeded in pruning your bonsai tree and you are happy with the results, take a break from it. It is far too easy to get get carried away and cut away too much. Wait for a couple of weeks and then look for new growth, it is a good idea to find some pictures in books or online of bonsai trees and gather ideas from them. Once you have an idea of what you are aiming for you may even decide that you are happy with your bonsai tree as it is.
Once pruning has taken place it is common for the top of the tree to grow more rapidly than the trunk. Becuase of these effect you will need to prune the uppermost branches more than the lower ones. You will quickly find that as soon you have pruned back your bonsai tree, it will begin to take on the desired shape and then it is just a matter of regular pruning as maintenance.
Good luck with the craft of Bonsai tree pruning, remember if you are in doubt ask at your local garden center, or join an online Bonsai tree pruning forum for advice.