Bonsai Training Information

Ulmus parvifolia
Chinese Elm

Chinese elm is fast growing, deciduous or evergreen depending on its location, forms a graceful upright rounded canopy with shiny, dark green leathery leaves. Several dwarf varieties, sports of Ulmus parvifolia, exist which grow slower than the ordinary Chinese elm. Chinese Elm produce a fine network of twigs and branches help them turn into impressive Bonsai in a short time. A versitile and very popular species of Bonsai, especially with those just starting out with Bonsai.


Formal upright, Informal Upright, Slanting, Cascade, Semi-cascade, Literate, Broom, Rock-over-root, Clasped-to-rock, Twin-trunk, Clump, Sinuous, Straight Line, Group planting, Saikei




The Chinese Elm can be grown Outdoor or Indoor Tree. If grown outdoors it should be grown in full sun. During the hottest months of peak summer, need some protection from scorching heat, move into a semi-shaded area. Also during the coldest months of winter best to protect from sever frost, move into cool green house or cover with fleece.


Loves frequent watering, but avoid letting pot water log. Do not let plant dry out. During extremely hot weather - water regularly. In spring and early summer when the plant supports lots of new growth water frequently and keep soil moist.


To retain and produce small leaves, do not feed high nitrogen fast-acting fertilizers. Feeding three or four times a year is sufficient to maintain good color and healthy growth without enlarging the size of the leaves. Do not feed when tree is without leaf.

Leaf and Branch Pruning:

Most shaping can be done by pruning. Heavy pruning is best left to when the plant has gone dormant just before spring.

Re-potting & Growing Medium:

Repot younger plants every year and older plants every 3-4 years. It can deal with most types of soils as long as they are well drained. Use a deep or larger than normal pot as the tree is well rooted and likes room to grow. Soil Mix: 1 Part Akadama, 1 Part Fuji Grit, 1 Part Leaf Compost, 1 Part Pine Bark.


Not normally necessary most shaping is done through pruning. If wiring is required, be wary as the Branch are quite brittle and the flakes and bark marks quite easily.


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