WISTERIA BONSAI TREE: HOW TO GROW AND PLANT CARE

Wisteria is popular all over the world for its fragrant, cascading blooms. The possibilities of growing Wisteria are endless. 

They are vigorous plants which will climb up just about anything in a short space of time, but growing them on trees isn’t advised, as they can choke or even pull the tree down!

So what better way to enjoy these blooms than growing this gorgeous plant as a tree?

Like all plants grown as bonsai, they need a little more attention and can be fussier plants than the plant is in its natural form, but once you’ve got the basics down, these plants will thrive.

Keep reading to discover how you can grow your own wisteria bonsai, a relatively small but a bonsai which will be unforgettable.

Things You Should Know about Wisteria Bonsai

A wisteria bonsai tree is among the most long-lived plants you can grow as a bonsai. As long as you provide it with the right conditions and care, this plant can live for around 250 years.

As with all bonsai, wisteria requires patience to grow, as the process of growing them is a lot slower than in their natural state. Wisteria trees won’t bloom until they are mature, which is usually around the 10-year mark.

In a way, this is a good thing, as the large blooms need a lot of support from the plant, and this would be very difficult on a young bonsai.

Wisteria bonsai trees can get up to around 60cm tall in most cases, but this varies on the shape you are training the bonsai to be, and how old the plant is. 

Wisteria trees thrive in both full sun and partial shade, but if you grow your bonsai outdoors, this one will need protection from strong winds. 

It will put on its amazing display of flowers during spring, usually in white, blue, purple, or a mixture of these colors, depending on the type of wisteria. 

Types of Wisteria Bonsai

You’ll find that wisteria bonsai trees are usually either the Chinese wisteria, wisteria sinensis, or the Japanese wisteria, wisteria floribunda. Though there are more varieties, these two tend to be the most popular. 

With the new cultivars, you can get pink wisteria blooms and dark purple, which also make stunning displays

How to Grow a Wisteria Bonsai

Like any bonsai tree, you can grow wisteria bonsai from seed or by propagation. Growing them from seed requires a lot of patience and an eye to see exactly what the seedling needs and when. 

Propagating a Wisteria Bonsai

The benefits of growing a wisteria bonsai tree from propagation are two-fold. One, you’ll have to wait a significantly less amount of time for your bonsai tree to grow. 

Two, in most cases, the wisteria will bloom sooner.

You can propagate a wisteria bonsai from cuttings, air layers, or grafted plants.

Growing a Wisteria Bonsai From Seed

Wisterias are challenging to grow from seed, as the seeds can lay dormant for a long time. 

Their germination period can be anything from 30-60 days, which is relatively shorter compared to some trees.

If you have a lot of patience, and you’re up to the challenge, you can try growing your own. 

How To Care for Wisteria Bonsai

Wisteria has a good tolerance to frost and cold temperatures — until they are grown as bonsai trees. 

The roots are fragile in a pot — especially in a bonsai, where they are often above the soil — so you’ll need to bring them somewhere indoors but cool in order to provide the plant with a dormancy period. 

Sunlight

Wisteria bonsai need full sun in order to do well, but they need protection from the strong rays of midday, as this can wilt the plant. The more sun it receives, the more impressive the flowers will be.

Watering

Wisteria are thirsty plants, more so in containers, as the moisture will evaporate quickly. You’ll need to check the bottom of the soil to see if the plant needs a good soaking. 

The best way to do this in summer is to put them in a shallow bowl with some water. Don’t leave the plant in there for too long, and let it drain completely, so the roots won’t rot.

Fertilizing

Like any bonsai tree, it’s a good idea to fertilize wisteria with a specially formulated bonsai feed, which keeps the nutrients in the soil balanced. 

The best way to feed it is to do so after it has flowered, which will support its continued growth. 

Potting and Repotting 

If you’re growing a younger wisteria bonsai, you’ll need to repot the plant every year, either in early spring or autumn, so you don’t shock the plant. 

Mature wisteria bonsai trees only need repotting every two years, and clearing away old soil will help refresh the plant. 

How to Prune a Wisteria Bonsai

You’ll need to prune the plant back at least every autumn, as this plant grows quickly, but make sure there are no flowers on the tree when you do. Cut any shoots that you don’t want to become branches.

Pests and Diseases

Wisteria bonsai trees are relatively resistant to pests and diseases, but root rot, powdery mildew and leaf spot are the ones to watch out for.

Where to Buy Wisteria Bonsai

As wisteria bonsai trees are very popular, they are readily available in online shops and local nurseries.

It’s always best to buy a plant from a specialist grower or nursery, as it will have received the very best care and will live for years.

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