After finishing up an article on deciduous bonsai trees, I realised it would be a disservice if I didn’t also write one about evergreen bonsai species!
Although not every bonsai tree is evergreen, a lot of popular species are! This means the bonsai will not lose its leaves throughout the year in the colder months, although it will still lose it’s needles, much like a Christmas tree. Evergreen trees are known for being harder to care for than deciduous trees, however are usually worth the work!
What Does Evergreen Mean?
Evergreen, in terms of bonsai, means that the species of tree typically keeps its leaves all year round – which is different to deciduous trees that will shed all of their leaves during the winter months. Evergreen trees do still lose leaves and replace them with new leaves all year round, but this won’t happen all at once. Despite being named ‘evergreen’, they don’t actually all have green leaves – this type of bonsai can have many different colored leaves ranging from green, yellow, red, or even needles.
Evergreen trees are typically slightly harder to look after, just because of the fact they have their leaves all year long. This is in contrast to the deciduous trees that can be just put in the shed during the dormant winter period. For more information on deciduous bonsai species, check out this full guide I put together!
Evergreen species originate from all over the world, from the coniferous forests of the North, to the tropical rain forests of South America.
Popular Evergreen Bonsai Trees
These are the most popular evergreen bonsai trees:
-Hawaiian Umbrella Bonsai
-Fukien Tea Bonsai
These species do still shed leaves all year round, however, they aren’t going to lose all of their leaves at the same time like the deciduous trees.
Evergreen Specific Care Information
When caring for an evergreen bonsai, you should still be adhering to the standard protocols for caring for a bonsai, in terms of watering, pruning, re potting, fertilizing, location etc. With that being said, there are a few variables it’s worth knowing in order to ensure the health of your evergreen tree.
Watering – This is going to be fairly tree dependent but as a basic rule of thumb, evergreen trees will need a lot of watering year round, about 2-3 times per week. The specifics will depend on the actual growing conditions and species, for instance a tropical species will need more moist soil for optimum growth than that of an evergreen that is grown in dry climate.
Pruning – Evergreen trees will need more pruning than a deciduous species but still it should not be excessive. Prune in the autumn and winter months, before the summer growth comes in.
Typically you’re going to need to fertilize an evergreen bonsai more during the summer and spring and even occasionally during the winter months. Using a high nitrogen level fertilizer twice per month with a regular fertilizer twice per month is advised during growing periods. I have been using this balanced fertilizer from Amazon
recently and it’s been doing wonders for my bonsai.