Any starter trees you buy from us have been previously root pruned and put into a plastic pot to recover and start growing new feeder roots. I never recommend putting a tree in a Bonsai pot after its first root prune as it can be very hard on a tree and this is where trees are at the greatest risk of dying. We like to ensure our trees are healthy when they leave us.

Before you start, Potting mix is considered a hazard if inhaled. I recommend only potting outside and the wearing of gloves when potting.

Ensure drainage mesh is over the drain holes.
Put a light layer of potting soil in the bottom of the pot.
Gently remove the tree from the plastic pot.
Carefully brush the soil off the top of the root mass to expose as much trunk as possible.
Check to see if the tree will fit in the pot as it is.
If it is too large, use your hand to rub of dirt along the sides and bottom. If necessary trim a little of the extra root off.
Position the tree in the pot looking for “the front” which is where the tree looks best. This position isn’t great.
This is better but I don’t like the angle it is sitting on so I place a lump of soil under the right hand side of the roots.
This looks much better.
Fill the pot with the potting mix making sure soil goes down the sides as well as on top of the roots.
Put a layer of decorative sand or propagating sand over the surface of the dirt. This not only gives a nice finish but also helps keep the dirt in place when watering the tree.
Finally, immerse the tree and pot in a tub of water until the bubbles of air trapped around the roots have stopped coming to the surface and the potting mix is nice and moist.
This tree is sitting a bit to the left of the pot so I can place a stone as a decorative element. Nestle the stone into the decorative sand so it looks like it is embedded and not just floating on top.
Place your tree where it will have morning and late afternoon sun but is sheltered from any fierce heat at midday.

For more information on how to care for your Bonsai go to the Care For Your Bonsai page