How much light does my bonsai need?

gwtamaraJanuary 1, 2013

> It is very important for you to identify what type of bonsai you have, as different types of trees have different light requirements.

> Remember all trees live outside year round in their native habitat. Thus, the more sunlight they receive, the better they will grow.

> Some very general guidelines for temperate climate, woody trees are: Most conifers require a lot of light, full sun all day is preferable. Most broad leafed trees like a lot of light but will do well in partial shade. Some broad leafed evergreens like azaleas are shade tolerant.

> Tropical and semi-tropical trees are equally variable, and must be approached on an individual basis.

> Most trees will not survive indoors without supplemental, artificial lighting.

> For indoor wintering of tropical and sub-tropical trees in cold climates, many enthusiasts prefer fluorescent bulbs, one warm spectrum and one cool spectrum in the same fixture. Commercial fluorescent grow lights are also available. Place the trees as close to the bulbs as you can. Leave the lights on for 16-18 hours a day.

> Incandescent grow light bulbs are available but are not of much use unless used for one or two plants that dont need a lot of light. These bulbs get very hot and will burn foliage if placed too near a tree.

> When a tree gets diminished light levels, water and fertilizer must be applied with less frequency.

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