Coconut Bonsai: How to Grow and Care

coconut bonsai

Are you wondering how to grow bonsai coconut trees? 

As with regular coconut trees, there are no branches or cambium on the trunk of a coconut bonsai. Therefore, it might seem difficult to grow coconut bonsai in a container. However, you can grow a fruit coconut bonsai tree by restricting the root growth and trimming the leaves.

Also, we have studied bonsai coconut trees in-depth and have more detailed information for you. Today, we will discuss everything about coconut bonsai. 

With that said, let’s jump right into this topic!

About the coconut bonsai plant

Botanical nameCocos Nucifera
HeightUp to 25 meters (80 feet)
Leaves size4 m
LocationSunny spot
TemperatureAbove 85°F (30°C)
Humidity High
LightFull sun
SoilSandy, well-draining soil 
FertilizerOrganic Fertilizer
Life span60-80 years

How to Grow a Bonsai Coconut Tree?

A bonsai coconut tree is made from a young coconut plant. Luckily, this palm-size piece of art is easy to maintain. And if you are a plant enthusiast, you won’t be disappointed with the steps below.

Following are the things you will need:

Plastic bag or container
Sandpaper or sharp knife
Pruning saw
Palm fertilizer

The best way to bonsai a coconut tree is to start from the seed. To do so, follow these steps:

1. To begin, carefully select a coconut from a healthy, mature tree.

2. Take a plastic bag or container and place your coconut inside.

3. Place the sand and dirt in your container, with the coconut’s stem facing up.

4. Once the coconut’s shoot reaches 25 centimetres, remove it from the container.

5. Next, gently peel off the outer layers of the coconut shell.

6. Using sandpaper or a sharp knife, smooth off the coconut.

7. To remove dirt and debris, wash your coconut in water.

8. Plant your coconut carefully in nutrient-rich soil with fast drainage.

9. After you water your coconut bonsai thoroughly, you are ready to go!

There is more to coconut bonsai than just growing them. So, if you want your coconut bonsai to thrive for a long time, you must take good care of it. You can take care of your bonsai coconut by following the below instructions.

Coconut Tree Bonsai Care


The coconut tree grows best in tropical regions with high humidity (at least 75%). The ideal temperature in summer is above 85°F (30°C), and the minimum temperature in winter is always above freezing. Also, coconut bonsai need direct sunlight for at least half of the day.


Bonsai coconut trees thrive in the sun. Hence, give your plant at least six hours of direct sunlight each day. In nature, palms struggle in the shade; that’s why it’s essential your indoor plant gets plenty of light.

Artificial light

In winter, place your bonsai plants under a lamp or other artificial light. By doing this, you will be able to compensate for the loss of sunlight.


In order to keep coconut bonsai healthy, they need a sufficient amount of water. When you renew your coconut tree’s soil, add sand or vermiculite for excellent drainage.

Coconut trees are thirsty trees, so make sure the soil remains moist all the time. Soak the soil with warm water at least once or twice a week. Also, prevent the container from becoming waterlogged since this can rot the roots.


A high humidity level is essential for the growth of coconut bonsai. Moreover, keep your plant moist. Use an in-room humidifier and spray the plant with warm water frequently.

Additionally, keeping the container on the tray of pebbles raises the humidity around the plant. However, don’t let the bottom of the container touch the water.


The bonsai coconut tree needs strong fertilizer throughout the year. The best fertilizer to use is organic solid fertilizer, but liquid fertilizer is also an option. Also, due to their heavy feeding habits, coconut palms require regular fertilization. 

A lack of nutrients is one of the problems with coconut trees. Hence, it is advisable to use fertilizers that contain boron, manganese, and magnesium, as well as other basic and micronutrients. 

Adding nitrogen fertilizer to coconut trees with large green leaves will help them thrive and flourish. To achieve this use a 1-1-1 grain fertilizer. 

Pruning and Wiring

As previously mentioned, coconut trees do not grow new branches, so you only have to prune the leaves. By reducing the leaf size, you can control the growth of the plant.

Pruning is only necessary to remove dead and damaged parts of the tree. For this, use a sharp knife or pruning shears to gently remove the damaged part.

Coconut bonsai do not require wiring.


Repotting is done once a year. During repotting, use soil that drains well. Also, it is important that the soil is able to retain a little bit of water. This is because they dislike drying out.

Repot sprouted coconuts in 3-gallon pots with 12 inches of soil. Since coconut roots are shallow and small, they do not require much soil during the early growing months.

As soon as the coconut roots grow about 6-8 inches long, repot them in a container of 10 gallons. To avoid excessive soil moisture build-up, make sure the container has ample drainage holes.

Pests and diseases

Check the foliage of your coconut carefully, and if you notice any pests, identify them and use organic pesticides.

Disease Symptoms Prevention 
Bud Rot and nutfallChlorosis of youngest open leaves.
Leaves rapidly turning necrotic.
Pink-red tissue with a foul smell.
Good sanitation.
Using fungicides. 
Removing all dead trees. 
GanodermaOlder fronds turning yellow. 
Fronds collapsing and dying.
Make sure the trunk of a tree is not damaged by any tools or machinery.
Remove any dead or damaged part of the tree.
Gray leaf blight Small brown-yellow spots on the leaf.
Tips of leaflets turning Gray Canopy. 
Using fungicides.
Stem Bleeding Soft, yellow rot on the trunk.
Affected areas are dark and later turn black.
Oozing of reddish-brown liquid.
Using fungicides.
Lethal bole rotDestruction of the root system.
Reddish-brown rot. 
Infected part should be removed and burned.
Gray leaf blight
PestsSymptoms Prevention
Coconut bugBrown red adult insect with wings.Connect canopy with rope or sticks.
Coconut LeafrollerLarvae feeding under the surface of leaves.Insecticide. 
Coconut rhinoceros beetles V-shaped cuts in palm fronds.
Holes in leaf.
Large black beetle with a curved spine.
To prevent egg laying, plant a cover crop, as vegetation prevents eggs from laying.
Coconut ScalePale yellow spots on leaves.
Leave turning brown.
Red-brown colored insect.
Pruning infested part of the tree. 
Other chemical control may be necessary. 
Cocoa Mealybugs On a tree branch, an oval to round disc-like insect in waxy substance.Natural enemies (Lady beetle).
Chemical pesticides. 
Coconut leafroller
Coconut rhinoceros beetles
Coconut Scale

Container and Size

Coconut trees grow to a large size. So, plant your tree in a 3-gallon container. When the bonsai coconut tree grows, you will need a container that holds 10 gallons of soil. Also, to handle the pressure of a large root system, the pot needs to be sturdy (strongly built). For coconut bonsai, choose a sturdy plastic container or a well-made wooden barrel.


Can You Bonsai a Coconut Tree?

To bonsai a coconut tree, you must start from seeds. However, this process is tedious since coconut trees cannot be trained to stay small like other tree species. 

As we discussed above, it’s essential to choose an intact coconut from an established, healthy mother tree so your bonsai can grow. Additionally, it is important not to damage the stem or shoot of your coconut during its initial stages.

What is the lifespan of coconut bonsai?

The life expectancy of a coconut bonsai is 60 to 80 years, depending on how well it is cared for. Unlike their outdoor counterparts, coconut trees last a very long time as bonsai. They can even outlive them.

Nonetheless, if you don’t provide adequate sunlight and nutrients to your bonsai, it might not live for long. In addition, coconut trees take a long time to mature, especially for bonsai.

Do Coconut Bonsai grow indoors?

As with many bonsai, coconut trees make excellent indoor plants. Also, no tree can be considered an indoor plant technically, but bonsai are generally happier in the moderate and stable climate of their home.

Keeping your bonsai indoors is a good idea especially if you live somewhere with cold winters. However, it is critical to place your indoor bonsai near a warm, bright window, otherwise, it will not grow and bloom properly.

Are Bonsai Coconut Easy to Care For?

Yes, coconut bonsai can be kept pretty easily. If you provide enough water, a sunny location, and fertilize your bonsai coconut tree regularly, you should not run into any problems.

Tropical, humid climates are ideal for coconut trees. For this reason, you can even mist your bonsai every few days to make it appear as if it’s living on an island. Furthermore, coconut trees don’t require as much pruning as some other species, so you don’t have to worry about constant trimming.

What is the best way to make coconut bonsai leaves small?

If you want your coconut bonsai leaves to stay small, give them plenty of light. The more light they get, the smaller the bonsai leaves will remain, growing in clusters to conserve energy.

As with coconut trees, your bonsai shouldn’t be in low light because this can cause its leaves to grow. Also, a sharp pair of shears is another way to trim coconut tree leaves, although too much pruning is not good for a bonsai.


Coconut bonsais need special care, so it’s important to know how to maintain them. Also, the only way to grow them is from the seed, which makes this process a little bit difficult.

If you want to maintain your bonsai, make sure you water it well, but not so much that its roots become waterlogged. Also, make sure your coconut tree gets plenty of sunlight to ensure it grows all year long. Don’t be afraid to trim your coconut bonsai leaves if they get too big. Fertilize it seasonally wherever you live.

Are you interested in learning more about bonsai trees? Take a look at our helpful posts about bonsai plants!

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