Monday, May 3, 2010

Baobab Bonsai Grower

Here's my little baobab, having just started this year's growth a few weeks ago. It is a deciduous tree and it is critically important that it receive no water during the dormant season. That starts in the fall when the leaves start to yellow and fall off. Don't think your tree is dying when that happens, because that is normal. I think it's dead every winter and then it starts growing again every spring. I never cease to be amazed. At some point in October or November, I put the tree in the basement and completely neglect it. It's fine to put it on a shelf (does not need any light) and let it sit in dry dormancy for the winter; when you see green shoots in the spring, bring it back to a sunny place and water it regularly. One winter, it was stored under the pool table in the basement while we did renovations!

I started this tree from seed 4 years ago. Germination is not hard. You should soak the seed for 24 hours before sowing it, to help germination.

I cut the main stem last year to promote new growth, which worked very well. It triggered new shoots from the stem below the cut and around the circumference of the cut itself. I sealed the cut with Japanese cut paste, which can be purchased from bonsai dealers. I don't know what my plan is for future shaping of my tree, but I will figure that out as I go. It will probably be with me for many years!

Please leave a comment (and link, if you have one) if you have a baobab bonsai. There's not too many of them out there and I'd like to see what other ones look like.


  1. How old is this tree? I have one that is only about 3 years old now, but it is still skinny and quite tall for a bonzai. I've pretty much left it alone for that time, feeding it plant food every now and then. But I'm not sure what to do come the spring now (southern hemisphere) - to repot it or cut the stem again? Would love to hear your advice.

  2. The Tree is 9 years old, i am not an expert on plants but i would suggest contacting a forum on bonsai where i found the info on this one.
    Here is the link
    The site is in Spanish so use babel translate.
    Good Luck Marc