Juniper Bonsai: How To Grow And Care?

Juniper Bonsai

Don’t you love the idea of growing a bonsai in your home? But which is the best choice for bringing a bonsai home? 

A bonsai that needs low care is ideal to bring home. It can not only bring an aesthetic appeal but also can bring a feeling of mental peace and positivity to your home. 

So, the question is how to grow and care for a juniper bonsai if you bring one home.

In this article, we will discuss everything about Juniper bonsai from caring to growing which you should know, but first let us begin with why Juniper bonsai is so popular all over the world and why it is so important for you!

About Juniper Bonsai

Juniper bonsai is said to be one of the most popular bonsai trees. It is a plant that is available around the globe and also has more than 50 different varieties in them. They are very attractive and are wanted by everyone. Juniper bonsai is easy to care for and produces needle-like foliage, which enhances its beauty more. Also, the foliage that juniper bonsai forms are in various colors from steely blue-green to light green.

They are evergreen plants and grow at a steady pace, which makes it easier for the planters to look after them. Juniper bonsai can be shaped into any structure by pruning and wiring. They are also excellent for deadwood. It grows veins from below, the dried-out branch forming deadwood. Further, this deadwood is bleached and polished by climatic conditions making it durable. It is an indoor plant that can thrive if provided with the correct amount of care and attention.

Now you know why a Juniper bonsai is so important to bring home, let us now know about its types and how to grow and care for this bonsai!

What Are The Types of Juniper Bonsai?

Juniper bonsai has more than 50 different species of trees. They are one of the most popular bonsai trees in today’s time as they are available throughout the world. A few of the most popular juniper we have are listed below:

1. Common Juniper

It has needle-like foliage and is found anywhere in the world. They are very adaptable and are especially found in wind sites.

2. Chinese Juniper

It is the most picked bonsai by the planters as they are beautiful and elegant to look at. It has scale-like foliage and creates a twisting form.

3. California Juniper

They are more like shrub-grown bonsai and are prominent in drought-tolerant gardening which is usually found in Southwest regions of the world.

How To Grow A Juniper Bonsai?

Growing a juniper bonsai requires minimum steps. It is grown like every other bonsai plant. You just have to first decide on which type of juniper bonsai you want and then accordingly plant it. 

  • Firstly, select a young juniper plant from a nursery. 
  • Then, you change its container into a bigger one to provide wide space for the plant to grow freely. But before doing this, you gently remove the plant, clean and untangle the roots before placing them in the new container. 
  • After this step, water the plant at regular intervals to have a steady and controlled growth. Also, provide a drainage system to the plant to avoid any overwatering. 
  • Once the basic steps are finished, then wait for their growing period, which is between mid-summer to spring to fertilize the bonsai thoroughly. Fertilizers provide the needed nourishment to the bonsai that the regular soil cannot give. 
  • You can also start with pruning and wiring during the same time so that they can start taking the desired shape early. 
  • The last step you should do is repotting every 2 to 3 years for younger juniper bonsai and 3 to 5 years for the more mature and old ones.

How To Care For A Juniper Bonsai?

Juniper bonsai are very easy to care for and grow. It can even be grown by beginners as it can easily be structured, adaptable to the surroundings, and well-suited to bonsai techniques. Also, juniper bonsai prefers wiring to bend them into the desired shape since they are very durable.

Juniper bonsai trees have two types. One is scale-like foliage, and the other is needle-like foliage. You have to first learn to identify which one is which before you start taking care of them. Moreover, both will have differences in their growing method. A scale-like foliage tree is a Chinese juniper, and needle-like foliage is Japanese needle juniper.

1. Watering requirements of the Juniper bonsai

Every plant needs water to develop fully. Water is one of the most important necessities for a plant since it helps in the transport of nutrients from the soil to the complete plant. Maybe not all plants require a large amount of water, but they need to be cared for and given water at regular intervals.

Juniper plants do not require much watering and can survive dry environments too. But this does not mean that they don’t need water at all. The plant owners have to check the plant and then decide when to water the juniper bonsai. And as to determine when the tree needs water, simply put a finger or a stick inside the soil to an inch depth. Once you remove it you will notice that if it’s damp that means that the plant has enough water, but if it’s dry then supply it with the necessary amount of water.

Also, ensure that there is a proper drainage system for the juniper bonsai tree because if there isn’t then the plant can face overwatering, causing root rot. Try keeping the soil moist but not damp to prevent any formation of fungus.

2. Light requirements of the Juniper bonsai

Sunlight is necessary for all plants to make their food by the process of photosynthesis. Although, the amount of sunlight for every plant or bonsai will differ according to their nature and adaptiveness. The juniper bonsai needs direct sunlight for at least 6 to 8 hours a day. Due to this reason, the tree should be kept outdoors.

You can also keep the juniper bonsai plant indoors but ensure that you have provided the tree with the proper amount of light and ventilation space to grow freely and actively. If the plant does not receive the required sunlight then the leaves gradually change into a white color meaning that the plant is slowly dying, so to prevent this situation give juniper trees the needed lights.

3. Humidity requirements of the Juniper bonsai

Along with sunlight, humidity is also another factor that is very essential for most plants. Usually, people place a humidity tray under the juniper plant to encourage humidity, especially during winters. But you have to be careful to not submerge the roots into the water since it can cause root rotting. Without any humidity, the juniper bonsai plant can wither away and die.

4. Soil requirements of the Juniper bonsai

A potting mixture of the plants differs according to their requirements. For juniper bonsai trees, commercially available bonsai mix will give you the best results. The potting soil should be well-drained to allow the water and air to pass through easily. But ensure that the mixture is completely covering the container to prevent any air pockets.

You can even use organic materials to create the potting soil. It is up to you which soil you think will be suitable for your plant. Everything differs as it depends on the surrounding of the plant and its adaptability.

5. Fertilization requirements of the Juniper bonsai

All planters know how important fertilization is for the bonsai. Soil does not contain all the required nutrients that a plant wants, and hence, fertilizers should be used. Fertilizers contain nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium which are needed by all plants for better nourishment.

Juniper bonsai need regular fertilizing during their growing period, which is better from mid-summer to spring. It helps to increase their growth development. However, you should avoid fertilizing the plant during winters. You can use any organic or liquid fertilizers a month during their growing season to enhance their nourishment. Also, if you want to speed up their development, then use a nitrogen-rich fertilizer.

6. Pruning of the Juniper bonsai

All plants, even bonsai, require pruning to maintain health and proper growth. This process is done to give the bonsai the desired structure or shape that you need. Pruning is important since it allows you to manage the bonsai’s growth. This procedure makes it simple to make changes to the plant for growth.

Cutting for juniper bonsai trees is advised. It can withstand severe trimming, but be careful when doing it, since cutting the wrong section of the plant could further damage the bonsai. To prolong the bonsai’s growth, you don’t have to remove all of the leaves; just remove some of them. Since this is the juniper bonsai trees’ growing season, mid-summer to spring is the optimal time to prune them.

7. Repotting of the Juniper bonsai

Bonsai trees do not require repotting often since they are long-living plants and can withhold for a longer period. You have to be very attentive and caring towards the plant and also regularly check the plant to ensure its safety and needs. You can repot the younger juniper bonsai every 2 to 3 years and the mature ones every 3 to 5 years.

Repotting ensures better and fast growth of the bonsai plant. One of the main aims of repotting is to change the soil after it gets exhausted and completely drained. Repotting should be done to provide the essential minerals to the bonsai. Another reason is the cutting of roots.

You have to cut down the roots to an extent to control their growth. Prevent any heavy root pruning since it can lead the bonsai plant into a shock.

8. Pests and Diseases of the Juniper bonsai

The Juniper bonsai plant is usually not affected by any pests or diseases. You can also avoid such things from happening by taking proper care of the plant. But the one that attacks the bonsai is the spider mite. Spider mites suck the sap of the plant causing the leaves to droop and fall off. They are usually not seen through naked eyes. But can be seen when there is a heavy infection, and a fine web-like structure is seen on the leaves.

To prevent this you can heavily pour water on the infected parts of the bonsai or use insecticides to eradicate them. While doing this, be attentive to not damage other parts of the plant with the watering.​

Additionally, juniper suffers from several fungal diseases like rust and blight. Browning of the branch and leaf loss are symptoms of this disease. It typically occurs when these plants are situated in an area that is shaded, lacks adequate sunshine, and has poorly drained soil. Always make sure the soil is moist and not dried out. This will stop any fungal growth.


Q1. What are the alternatives to juniper for bonsai trees?

Ans. Many other options prove to be good bonsai plants like deodar cedar, Japanese maple, dwarf jade, Japanese cherry, and weeping fig. 

Q2. How long can a juniper bonsai live?

Ans. A juniper bonsai can easily live up to more than 100 years. But you have to take proper care and pay attention to their needs for healthy and better growth. 

Q3. Can juniper bonsai be in direct sunlight?

Ans. Yes, the juniper bonsai can be placed in direct sunlight but not too much because it can harm the bonsai. You have to keep a juniper bonsai tree in sunlight for at least 6 to 8 hours minimum to ensure better nourishment and growth of the plant. 

Q4. What is the difference between juniper bonsai and a juniper plant?

Ans. There is no difference between them. Juniper bonsais are the miniature versions of the juniper plant, which are pruned and trained thoroughly to develop into a shrub-like plant. 

Q5. How many times a day should you water a juniper bonsai?

Ans. You should water the plant every 2 to 3 days according to its location and environment. It could be watered once a week or frequently during the day. During watering, soak the roots of the plant in a container for 5 to 10 minutes and then let it drain out. 

Q6. Does juniper bonsai need repotting?

Ans. Yes, juniper bonsai needs repotting but the years depend on their age and growth. So young juniper bonsai have to be repotted every 2 to 3 years, and mature to old ones can be repotted every 3 to 5 years.


From the above-provided information, you might have understood almost everything about juniper bonsai, what types of juniper bonsai are present and how to care for the bonsai. They are the most basic and asked questions by plant owners. Juniper plants are beautiful to grow. It is found all around the globe as mentioned before. You just have to provide the plant with the needed amenities to grow in a comfortable environment.

You have to first learn the type of juniper bonsai you want, scale-like foliage or needle-like foliage. Then, accordingly, you can decide on how to care for the plant. Hope the above information given was helpful to you and cleared all your doubts regarding juniper bonsai.

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