Bonsai

Podocarpus - Podocarpus macrophyllus


GeneralitŠ°


evergreen tree originating in China and Japan; in nature it reaches heights close to twenty meters, as bonsai is suitable for all sizes. It has an erect stem and pyramidal or oval crown, generally the adult specimens have dense and rigid ramifications, while the young specimens may need a topping to produce numerous shoots along the stem; the coreteccia is dark and smooth, it takes many years to crack. The leaves are needle-like, long and flattened, similar to those of the yew, leathery, dark green; the male and female inflorescences grow on different trees, only on very old specimens, which also produce small berries containing seeds. The podocarps have slow growth and are quite suitable for beginners, although it is not always easy to give the hair the desired shape.

Pruning




this evergreen tree grows throughout the year, and the new branches tend to grow upwards, so it is necessary to constantly trim the shoots, just as it is good to gently remove the oversized leaves. The vigorous prunings are practiced preferably in winter. The wire can be applied all year round, being careful not to damage the bark, protecting it with raffia; the lignified branches bend with great difficulty.

Exposure


these plants love sunny, or very bright areas; growth with insufficient light causes very long leaves, excesses of sun can cause burns on the leaves. From March to September the plant can be placed outside, in a bright place, but partially shaded, especially in the hottest months of the year; the podocarp fears the cold and does not like temperatures below 10 ° C, in winter it should therefore be kept indoors, or in a temperate greenhouse, with temperatures around 15-18 ° C. In general it is better to avoid sudden changes in temperature and air blows.

Watering and soil


Watering: keep the soil quite humid, without exceeding it, it is always good to let the soil dry a little between one watering and another; it is also advisable to vaporize the foliage frequently with distilled water. Every 15-20 days, add some universal fertilizer to the irrigation water.
Soil: prefers rich, loose and very well drained soils; use a mixture prepared with two parts of peat, a part of sand, a part of leaf soil and a part of clay. Repot in spring every 2-3 years, cutting the roots slightly.

Podocarpus - Podocarpus macrophyllus: Multiplication and diseases


Multiplication: occurs by seed, even if the seeds are not easy to find; more easily you can practice cuttings, possibly using portions of the new shoots, since the branches already lignified root with difficulty.
Pests and diseases: poorly drained soil can favor the onset of root rot; excesses of drought or humidity can favor the attacks of mites or cochineal; in excellent growing conditions the podocarps are not affected by pests or diseases.