There are several reasons for bonsai developers to consider using seeds to begin growing their trees. For instance, gardeners have the opportunity to cultivate unique bonsai trees at affordable prices as a small bundle of seeds can be bought for less than $5. Also, gardeners can hone their skills with a larger number of trees.
Another benefit to using seeds is the considerable control they give gardeners since the grower may develop the tree from the very beginning. This allows the bonsai grower to carefully nurture their tree through each growing stage. Furthermore, gardeners may create each tree to the exact shape and size desired.
Growers can expect Zelkova trees to grow within three to four years while Hackberries take four to five years to become a Shohin bonsai.
When growing bonsai trees from seeds, it’s important to remember that tree seeds must complete the germination stage to sprout. Gardeners should allow their bonsai seeds to sit in cold, wet soil. When a seed feels the warmth of spring, it will gradually soften the seed’s shell and encourage early growth.
With nature as a guide, bonsai developers have the perfect growing blueprint in which to follow. Therefore, growers should plant their seeds during the fall. Bonsai professionals can use a process called cold stratification, which involves synthetically preparing seeds by cooling them in a refrigerator to create a winter environment.
When growers cool their seeds, they are breaking the dormancy, which creates germination. Bonsai developers should be prepared for germination to take a year or more due to springtime propagation and fall planting. Additionally, bonsai creators should keep the seed’s soil moist, but not overly wet as it may kill the seed. Novice growers may use a moisture gauge to measure the amount of water in the soil. In fact, a regular thermometer may come in handy for checking the soil temperature.
Bonsai growers should plant their seeds from ¼ to ½ inch underneath the soil and must make sure that their seeds have reliable drainage.
When gardeners use seeds for growing bonsai plants, they should remember that:
- Seeds allow bonsai growers to cultivate rare plants
- Seeds give the grower greater control over the plant’s creation
- Germination is important in the seed development process
- Patience is required when growing trees from seeds