OLD Bonsai is dying quick!

beharding88March 27, 2014

Hello, I am very new to Bonsai growing. I purchased a Water Jasmine Bonsai 4 months ago and it has been dying every day since. The death has started from the top and is working its way down the tree. I am giving it plenty of water in a pot that drains. It is inside under a light which I leave on for about 12 hours a day. There are some small insects in the soil that you can hardly see but they stay in the soil and are not on the actual tree. I am not sure what the problem is but I am going to post some pictures I just took. You can see one new branch growth in them from the bottom which makes me wonder why the rest is dying....hmmmm PLEASE any help would be greatly appreciated!!! This tree is like 20 years old and I dont want to me the cause of its death :(

This post was edited by beharding88 on Thu, Mar 27, 14 at 22:41

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Hi - my understanding of a 'water jasmine' is that it's a Wrightia religiosa', and the leaves look nothing like your tree's, though those look possibly like a Eugenia's, though that's just a guess. You need to get rid of whatever's living in the soil as it's probably killing the roots... not all pests live on the trunk. Until you find out what tree you have though, it's hard to advise otherwise. I'd try watering less often though and see how things go, plus give it a couple of more hours of light daily.

    Bookmark   March 27, 2014 at 5:36PM
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Thanks for the response! I am 100% sure it is a water jasmine that was imported from vietnamese. I will try to post a better pic of the leaves... What is the best way to kil the insects in the soil?


    Bookmark   March 27, 2014 at 7:02PM
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We need a better picture, possibly of the entire plant. Is the soil the same from when you bought it?

    Bookmark   March 27, 2014 at 10:10PM
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Thanks for the response! It is the same soil as when I bought it. How should I kill the insects in soil?

    Bookmark   March 27, 2014 at 11:21PM
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This post was edited by moochinka on Wed, Apr 2, 14 at 18:57

    Bookmark   March 29, 2014 at 6:22AM
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Safer's Insecticidal Soap - follow directions on bottle, or else immerse the pot in water (not warm or icy) for 10 mins to drown the things, though wait a couple of days or so til soil has dried a bit from last watering... you don't want to drown the roots too.

    Bookmark   March 29, 2014 at 6:23AM
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JimK1940(Zone 8a north of Seattle)

I am new to the Forum so here is a little background on me. I am 73 years old, retired from the Boeing Company for the past 14 years and have been working on Bonsai plants for about 22 years. Now am I an expert? Not in the least, I have not stopped reading, studying and learning since I started and will never be known as anything but a Neophyte.

There is one thing I do not like and that is the term "Indoor Bonsai."

I just have a couple of questions.

Where did you purchase your Bonsai?

You said you bought it a few months ago, have you taken it out of the pot and inspected its root system? If the answer is no, then why not?

A lot of times, the problem with just purchased Bonsai plants, is the fact that they are root-bound and/or potted in very poor soil. Having the plant in dirt is not the same as having it in good soil. Because the water runs out the bottom of the pot does not mean the roots are watered.

I am sure that you were told that it (your Bonsai) was an "indoor plant." Do your plant a big favor and put it outside where it can get Sun and wind.

WARNING. Don't take it out if you live in an area where there is a foot of snow or in Arizona where it's HOT. But if you have nice spring or summer weather, the plant should be outdoors.

You must learn and remember that your Bonsai depends on you to give it what it needs to survive and grow. Love it, because it's life is in your hands alone.

Other the other hand if you don't want the plant, leave it where it is and it will slowly die.

Tell us about the condition of the roots, that's a good place to start trouble shooting your Bonsai, after you get it outside.

Please, I would like to help you if I can. Have a nice day.

This post was edited by JimK1940 on Fri, Apr 25, 14 at 9:34

    Bookmark   April 25, 2014 at 9:31AM
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"You need to get rid of whatever's living in the soil as it's probably killing the roots... not all pests live on the trunk. "

I doubt it. He said hes giving it a ton of water, and has little flies in the soil... sounds like fungus gnats, and sounds like too wet soil.

Stop watering it unless the soil is completely dry all the way through.

    Bookmark   April 25, 2014 at 9:35AM
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