Adenium Bonsai Tree: How To Grow And Care!

Adenium Bonsai Tree

Did you know that you can invite hummingbirds to your home very easily without actually capturing them?

I know it sounds absurd but it’s all true. If you are a bonsai, and a bird lover like me, also if you are planning to bring a bonsai plant home, then Adenium is the perfect option. Adenium trees attract a lot of hummingbirds, and they will get attracted to come to your home if you bring an Adenium bonsai plant home. 

But the question is, how to grow and care for an adenium bonsai plant at home?

Do not worry my fellow bonsai lovers, because, in this article, I will discuss every secret you need to know about growing an Adenium bonsai plant at home! So, without further ado, let’s begin!

Before I begin, let’s know why this bonsai plant is so popular all over the world and what are its different types!

About Adenium Bonsai Plants

Adenium is scientifically called Adenium obesum and is commonly called Desert rose, which grabs our attention with the beautiful vibrant flowers, dark green delicate leaves, and bulbous trunk. It blooms usually in pink, red, and purple colors, and the leaves are oval-shaped. It is a plant that can be grown in hot and dry climates with less care and attention. Also, this plant can be placed both indoors and outdoors.

What Are The Different Types of Adenium Bonsai Trees?

Adenium genus has a wide variety of species but mostly Adenium obesum is used. It is one of the most common and oldest species of the Adenium. But there are also some subspecies in Adenium obesum which are:

1. Oleifolium Adenium species

It is a native plant of South Africa and Botswana which grows beautifully with sharp leaves and pink-colored flowers that grows in a trumpet shape. Also, this plant can grow up to 16 inches in height.

2. Socotranum Adenium species

This plant is one of the largest species of Adenium that grows up to 15 feet in height and 8 feet in width. The trees produce pink flowers that have a diameter of 5 inches. Socotranum is commonly seen in the places between Somalia and Yemen in Socotra. It blooms in the spring season even though the tree is leafless.

3. Somalense Adenium species

Somalense originally belongs to Eastern Africa. It is one of the good-looking species of the Adenium which is often made into a bonsai tree because of the twisting trunk and branches. Also, this tree looks very beautiful with the sharp-edged branches and colorful trumpet-shaped flowers. It grows about 16 feet in height.

4. Swazicum Adenium species

Swazicum is one of the dwarf species of the Adenium which grows up to 2 feet in height and is thus suitable for making a bonsai. It is a native of Swaziland and South Africa and is commonly named Summer Impala Lily.

How to propagate an Adenium Bonsai Plant?

There are two different ways to propagate an Adenium bonsai plant. So, let’s find out.

1. Propagating through Seeds

The best way to start propagating an Adenium plant is with seeds, especially in the growing season. 

Take the best quality seeds of Adenium and soak them in lukewarm water for a day. It helps to break the seed coat. Use a better quality soil mix preferably bonsai mix for filling the pot. If you do not get it, then use sandy and well-gaining soil mix for potting. Also, it is better to use a ceramic pot for planting the adenium plant. Now place the seeds in the soil mix at 1 inch and make sure that every two seeds are placed at a gap of 2 inches. Water it enough and lace it in a sunny spot. In a week or 10 days, the plant starts to grow.

2. Propagating through Cuttings

You can replicate your Adenium plant with stem or branch cutting. But propagation with stem cutting may not give your plant a bulbous trunk but can give your bonsai Adenium the desired look.

Collect a healthy stem cutting that is inches from the tip. Allow it to recover from the wound. It may take 2-3 days. Now, rinse the cutting and dip its end in the rooting hormone and place it in the soil mix. Place it in a warm environment and water it daily. In 2-6 weeks, roots will start to grow and you can observe the new growth in the following days.

How to grow an Adenium Bonsai Tree?

It is an easy task to grow an Adenium bonsai tree at home. This bonsai can be propagated by seeds and cuttings. As it is a low-care plant, it will not trouble you much. This bonsai thrives well with normal care and produces beautiful flowers. Also, if you train it properly, it enhances the look of your home. 
General care is enough for maintaining the plant at home. So, now let’s discuss the care tips to grow an Adenium Bonsai Tree at home.

How to take care of the Adenium Bonsai Tree?

Adenium is a beginner-friendly plant and can be grown easily with less care. It does not need much attention to thrive if you provide the following:

1. Sunlight requirements of Adenium bonsai

Adenium is a native of tropical and subtropical regions and needs a lot of sunlight to live. It is better to place it outdoors, that too not behind the tall plants. If you cannot put it outside, then place it indoors on a windowsill, which is in the south or west of your home.

Also, this bonsai needs at least 6 hours of direct sunlight. If it does not get enough sunlight, it becomes weak and the color of the blooms may not be very bright. Place it in the full sun and let it absorb the maximum sunlight. If the leaves of your plant are turning yellow then, it is getting more than enough sunlight, and therefore, it is time to bring your plant indoors or place it in a shade to make it healthy again.

2. Water requirements of Adenium bonsai

Adenium plants are indeed succulents that do not need much water. Water your plant only when the soil becomes a little dry. The frequency of watering an Adenium plant depends on the environment of your home and the weather conditions.

Adenium bonsai plants should be watered a little more in summers and in spring especially as it is the growing season for them. In falls and winters, you can delay the watering process. Adenium plants do not like sitting in water for a long time and they do not like drying out. So, water your plant when it is needed.

3. Misting requirements of Adenium bonsai

Try to mist your plant in the summers or the dry environment. Do not spray water on the flowers. Make sure water should not last on the plant for a long time because it may lead to fungal growth or make the parts rot.

4. Soil mix requirements for planting Adenium bonsai

It is recommended to use a cactus mix or special bonsai which can be used for planting the Adenium bonsai tree. You can use a normal soil mix mixed with perlite, sand, coarse grit, and gravel for filling the pot of your bonsai. Also, make sure that the mix is well-draining and always keep the soil a little dry.

5. Fertilization requirements of Adenium bonsai

Fertilize your plant only once a month during the growing season. Fertilization for Adenium bonsai plants requires only in the growing season, you do not need to fertilize in other seasons. Use a balanced fertilizer and also remember to dilute the fertilizer before using it. The ratio of the fertilizer must be 1:1:1.

Depending on the environmental conditions, if your tree is actively growing even in winters, then you can fertilize it. Use only organic solid fertilizers if you place your bonsai Adenium outdoors. Do not feed your plant more than one time, even in the growing season.

6. Pruning requirements of Adenium bonsai

Pruning keeps your Adenium bonsai tree healthy and maintains the desired shape. It also helps in encouraging new growth.

Before starting pruning your Adenium bonsai, you should take some precautions. Adenium bleeds a strong and milky sap that may irritate your skin. So, wear gardening gloves to prevent allergies. Use sharp cutters to prune the plant to avoid crushing it. Pests grow on the crushed parts, so it is better to use a piece of cloth or a newspaper to cover the floor while pruning to avoid messy dirt. Flowers are produced at the tip of the new shoot. So, avoid pruning the new shoots. But prune the other areas and allow the new shoots to grow and bloom.

Trim all the dried leaves and flowers. Prune back the infected parts of the plants. Make your cuts at the leaf nodes and just above the junction of the main stem and the stem that should be pruned off. It helps the main stem to heal the wound very quickly. Later, you can pinch off the little dried picture of the pruned stem. Prune the excess growth of the side stems which disturbs the shape of your bonsai Adenium.

7. Wiring requirements of Adenium bonsai

Wiring plays a significant role in making a bonsai. Being succulent, Adenim can easily be trained to get the desired shapes. Use only thin wires to wind the Adenium. The trunk and branches of this plant are bulbous. Its tissues of it are filled with water, and thick wire can damage them.

Wind the wire loosely to avoid crushing. Cut the wires carefully after the process of training. Do not rewind the wires. Wounds on the trunk or branches may lead to fungal growth on them and may cause severe damage to the plant. So, prune and wire very carefully to avoid wounds.

8. Temperature and Humidity requirements of Adenium bonsai

Adenium thrives well in dry and hot environments. Although this bonsai can be grown at room temperature (24 degrees Celsius) in the winters, it loves to be in temperatures above 30 degrees celsius during the growing season.

It is better to place it outdoors during the summer with sufficient watering. In winters and falls, you can bring your bonsai Adenium indoors and provide artificial plant lights and generators to increase the growth. In dry conditions, during the summer season, you can just spray a little water on the plant to generate a little humidity and avoid the consequences of overexposure to heat.

9. Potting and Repotting requirements of Adenium bonsai

For potting your adenium bonsai tree, use clay or ceramic pots that allow the soil mixture to dry quickly. Use a light-colored pot to avoid an overheated root system during summer. Make sure that the pot you use has a proper drainage system. It is better to fill the pot with gravel or pieces of bricks at the bottom, to avoid the blockage of drainage holes.

If your Adenium plant is a young one then repot it every spring. Your adult Adenium bonsai tree should be repotted once in 2-3 years. Use fresh soil mix for filling the pot. Let the soil dry for a while before repotting. Also, do not water it for 5-6 days after repotting.

10. Pests, Diseases, and other common problems faced by the Adenium Bonsai

Some of the following pests and diseases might occur to your Adenium bonsai if not cared for properly:

  • Root rot: If you observe that the leaves are turning yellow and there are brown spots on the stems, especially at the base, then your plant is indicating that it is suffering from root rot. Stop watering it and let the soil completely dry. If the situation is even worse then it is better to remove the plant from the soil and trim all the infected parts. Then repot it.
  • Dried yellow leaves and leaf-drop: Yellow and dried leaves indicate under-watering. Water your bonsai and place it in a sunny location.
  • Spider mites, mealybugs, scale, and aphids are the pests that are generally observed while growing Adenium. Use pesticides to treat these pests. You can even apply neem oil for treating these pests. Pests can be treated by wiping them with a piece of cotton dipped in rubbing alcohol.
  • If your bonsai tree is suffering from any fungal infection then prune the infected part and apply fungicides to get rid of it.


Q1. What is the lifespan of the Adenium Bonsai tree?

Ans. It lives more than 30 years with proper care.

Q2. Is the Adenium bonsai tree toxic?

Ans. Yes, it is toxic to children and pets. Do not let your kids and pets touch the plant and its flowers. Wash your hands thoroughly after pruning the tree as it produces poisonous white sap. If the leaves are consumed, it leads to indigestion problems.

Q3. How often does an Adenium tree bloom?

Ans. You can observe your bonsai Adenium flowering in the early spring in the early autumn. It stops blooming for 6-8 weeks during the mid-summer.

Q4. Can we make Adenium bonsai plants to grow at home?

Ans. Adenium can be made into a bonsai and can be placed indoors where there is maximum sunlight.

Q5. Why is my Adenium bonsai tree not blooming?

Ans. Generally, Adenium blooms after 7-8 months after the plantation. If still, the plant is not blooming, then it is telling you that it needs more sunlight, watering, and fertilization to produce beautiful flowers. Place it outdoors or in a place that gets direct sunlight.


Adenium or Desert rose is a beautiful bonsai tree and can be grown with a little care. If you are about to start gardening and searching for an easy-grown plant then, this is the best option.

From my personal experience, bringing this plant home will change the look of your home into something magnificent and magical. So, why are we waiting? Bring Adenium home and transform your home.

I hope you like this article, and if you have any questions in your mind, drop them in the comment section down below, and don’t forget to share this article with your friends and family!

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