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Bonsai Banter Issue # 040 Bonsai and Heat
July 02, 2013
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Bonsai and HeatMy daughter called me yesterday from Las Vegas (one of her favorite vacation spots.) "Mom, the temperature is 115 degrees!"
Angela is wise enough to stay indoors, but my thoughts turned to bonsai care when temperatures become this severe. Do the trees need to go indoors? No. However, it will help to drop the temperature of the containers, and in some cases put bonsai in the shade (especially pines).
I'm not in the habit of repeating issues of BonsaiBanter, but last year's heat wave offered many ideas that I will share again in this issue.
The Heat is On!These tips are from 2012, but are worthwhile reviewing when temperatures are severe.
“... here in S. Indiana we have been experiencing severe heat and drought. Our trees are suffering. With this in mind, I just tried a new experiment and thought I would pass on my results. I have started covering my pots that sit in hot direct sun with heavy wet bath towels …
Pots were covered with towel at 9:30 a.m. and watered heavily. Temperature checked at 2:00 p.m. in full sun, no shade or shade cloth.
Other Clever Techniques“You may want to try cutting 1/2 Styrofoam pieces that cover the pot on the sunny side, shim them up with a few rocks (or pieces of foam) and cut the trunk area out.
(Do not use the insulation styrofoam that has the foil on one side.) A larger rock on top holds them down.
The soil temps will be what the temps are in the shade ... monitor them on windy days, but the blue Styrofoam does absorb and reflect the heat.
They can be easily removed for thorough watering.”
- Kenny Popp, Louisville, KY, USA
Pauline Muth from upstate New York, added an especially easy resolution:
'Normal' HeatIf summer temperatures are normally in the 90s where you live, your bonsai will most likely be tolerant of the summers. You won't need to do anything special. However . . .
Over the top temps can be dangerous to both humans and bonsai. Use caution!
Heat and Your Smallest BonsaiSmall amounts of soil (in small containers) add to the problem of high temperatures and your smallest bonsai trees.
Click here to get details about the illustration below and see the full page where I have more on shohin bonsai care.
More on MulberryIn last month's Bonsai Banter, I talked about mulberry bonsai. It wasn't long before I received this photo. Thanks to Mitch Thomas for sharing his bonsai. I hope he will send another picture when it is fruiting!
Site RemindersDon't forget, if you have a bonsai business or are a bonsai speaker, I have very reasonable spaces available for Your Ads.
Until next month, thanks for your input and for visiting my site.
P.S. If you send me an email, photo or story and don't hear from me, I may not have received it. Please try again!
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