Murraya paniculata bonsai is a good addition to your home with its cluster of white colored flowers and its fragrant citrus smell.

Murraya paniculata is a bushy shrub or a small tree belonging to Rutaceae family. It goes by several names- orange jasmine, china box, mock orange, honey bush ,orange jessamine, satinwood to name a few.

Orange jasmine is a tropical plant and is native to south-east Asia, Indian sub-continent, South China and North Australia especially the north Western Australia and parts of Queensland.

It is easy to distinguish this bushy shrub or tree. As a small tree it can grow anywhere from 2 m to 7 m. Its elliptical shaped leaflets are on either side of the stem and are glossy green. The bark of the tree is pale or white. And hence the name satinwood.

The flowers of Murraya paniculata are cream or white and are found in clusters. The flowers typically have four to five petals bent backwards and have a distinguishable citrus smell. Flowering happens throughout the year. Fruits are oval and go from green to orange or red as they ripen. Berries contain one or two seeds and are hairy.

Murraya paniculata is well suitable for cultivation as ornamental. They form an attractive shrub. However, they grow rapidly once pruned and need to be sheared often especially when the plants are young. Another ornamental variety of this species is Murraya paniculata ‘Min-a-min’, also known as dwarf mock orange.

The native Murraya paniculata looks similar to the Murraya paniculata Exotica i.e a cultivated exotic form. However, the native variety has smaller leaflets when compared to its cultivated counterpart.

The native Murraya paniculata looks similar to the Murraya paniculata Exotica i.e a cultivated exotic form. However, the native variety has smaller leaflets when compared to its cultivated counterpart.

One of the best choices you can make for bonsai gardening is Murraya paniculata bonsai. It is easy to grow and is a good survivor. In season, it makes for the perfect ornamental bonsai with its cluster of beautiful white flowers and pleasant smell. Even the bright red berries that come later makes for a great presentation.

This guide here is a brief attempt to acquaint bonsai enthusiasts about Murraya paniculata bonsai Tree Care.

How long does it take to grow Murraya paniculata Bonsai?

One of the easiest bonsai to grow in your home is Murraya paniculata. It is easy to grow, maintain and is pest resistant.

Murraya paniculata takes around 3-4 years to mature. The flowering bonsai looks best at a height of 20 inches or more. It is a great addition to your home and its fragrant flowers attract bees and butterflies while the red berries are food for the birds.

Here are few pointers with regard to the best conditions and requirements for Murraya paniculata bonsai tree care.

Position and lighting:

Murraya paniculata bonsai is a tropical plant. Hence, it requires heat and light. It can survive indoors, provided the room is sunny and bright. In spring and summer you can take the bonsai outdoors. Avoid direct sunlight and keep it in a place where there is moderate shade.

Murraya paniculata bonsai cannot survive low temperatures. So in winters it is best to keep it in a heated room with high humidity preferably above 50 percent. Take particular care that the bonsai gets a minimum of four to six hours of sunlight. You can use grow lights for bonsai during winter if there is insufficient light indoors.

Temperature requirements:

The bonsai grows well when temperatures are above 40 degrees Fahrenheit . The optimum temperature is between 60- 80 degrees Fahrenheit when the bonsai is kept indoors. They do not frost well. They are typically hardy in zones 9 to 11.

Avoid temperature shocks like suddenly taking it outdoors or bringing it indoors.


Slightly acidic soil with PH levels 6.5-7.5. The soil should be well drained and if possible free of chemicals. Recommended soil is bonsai soil. If preparing your own soil, then mix in two parts of loam and peat moss each to one part of sand.

Go for organic mix if you wish for a rapid growth rate of the plant.

Watering needs:

Water well during the growing season. After that light to moderate watering is sufficient. This is especially true during the winter months. Frequent watering during winters can kill the plant.

Also, if Murraya paniculata bonsai has to survive well , never allow the soil to become completely dry. As bark rots easily, avoid spraying on the plant. The soil should be moist not wet.

Use a moisture meter in the beginning to help you understand the bonsai’s requirements.


Some bonsai require frequent feeding but most, once in a year. During growing season give a balanced feed every 15 days. During winter once a month would suffice. Because slightly acidic soil is preferred by Murraya paniculata bonsai, you can add a dose of Miracid to the soil.

Styles :

Murraya paniculata Bonsai can grow in a variety of styles. It is best kept at a height of 20 inches or more. You can grow the Murraya paniculata Bonsai in cascade, semi-cascade, twin-trunk styles. You can also group them or try the slanting and clump styles.

How to Plant and Grow Murraya paniculata Bonsai

Murraya paniculata is an easy to grow tropical bonsai. It grows well in part shade and part sun environment. And is usually not affected by pests. During summer, it can be taken outdoors and during winters it can be brought indoors. When pruned properly it makes for an attractive ornamental bonsai.

Here are few pointers to help you grow Murraya paniculata bonsai.


Propagation of Murraya paniculata bonsai can be done with the help of seeds and cuttings. If seed it has to be planted immediately after removing from the fruit. But the growth is very slow. If cuttings are used then it is best to remove all its leaves and plant it in any rooting medium like sand. Add a rooting hormone if required. Once the roots are firmly formed, then transfer it to a different container.

Pruning and wiring:

Pruning keeps the plant in shape. Murraya paniculata bonsai should be pruned regularly during its period of growth. When the young shoots are almost eight inches long or have six to seven leaves, then prune it down to one to three leaves. If the specimen is older, prune it when the growth is four inches long. Prune branches that rub. Remember, the flowers start blooming early summer. So plan your pruning ahead of time.

The wiring of Murraya paniculata should be done with care. This is because bark can easily separate from its sapwood. Wire when the branches are lignified and are one or two years old.


Repotting should be done when the roots cover the whole pot. Or it can be done every two to three years, preferably at the end of spring. Repot in bigger, wider pot if you want the trunk of tree to increase in diameter.

Before repotting trim off dead wood and branches. Then water the container for easier transplantation of the plant to a new pot. The watering also ensures that there is no damage to roots of the plant.

The soil for repotting should be fertile, well drained and free of round worms. Go for organic soil for faster growth of plant. Keep the soil warm. This will help the roots to regenerate well.

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How to Care for Your Murraya paniculata Bonsai

As a tropical plant ,mock orange loves moderate sun. Therefore, it is best grown in USDA zones 9B through 11. The great news is that you can plant them any time. It needs a well-drained, fertile soil i.e. slightly acidic and free of nematodes.

Murraya paniculata bonsai should be positioned where there is no direct sunlight. A minimum of four to six hours of sunlight ensures that it grows well. It needs to be watered regularly during summer, the soil should be moist. Keep it away from strong winds.

During its growing season ensure that a fertilizer is applied fortnightly. Otherwise, once a month will suffice. Use a water-soluble fertilizer. Also keep a look out for early iron deficiency in the plant. You can use liquid iron as a foliage spray if required.

Prune the orange jasmine regularly to keep it in shape. Avoid harsh pruning. Repot once every two to four years. Prune the roots during repotting.

The bonsai looks best when it is grown at a size of 20 inches. And because of its glossy leaves, white fragrant flowers and red berries it makes for a perfect bonsai tree. A major part of its care also includes pest and disease control.

Pests and diseases:

There are certain pests that can prevent the healthy growth of the bonsai. Common problems associated with orange jasmine is scale, spider mites, white flies, sooty mold and nematodes.

Scales are white lines on stem and leaves. They suck the sap of plant. Sooty mold is a fungus occurring on leaves and preventing sunlight on the plants. White flies transmit diseases, increase growth of fungus. Nematodes or roundworms can attack plants.

Go for nematode free soil, prune regularly, do not over water, and use neem oil to prevent pest problems.