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Questions Wintering Three Trees 1 week 6 days ago #73818

  • BonsaiBae
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Hello Bonsai Empire,

This is my first post (many to come) here at Bonsai Empire! I've been cultivating bonsai since I was a teenager. Over the past few years, especially during the pandemic, I've started to incorporate bonsai care into my daily regiment. Both myself and my bonsais have benefited greatly, and I honestly don't know how I would have survived isolation and the lockdowns without them.

I currently have three trees, two junipers and a flowering cherry tree. All three trees were purchased in 2018 and have made great progress.

Cherry Tree 2018

Cherry Treet (Junipers in Background) 2021

I feel a connection with my three trees unlike anything else.

Unfortunately, I've always struggled with wintering. I live in Toronto, Canada which creates a unique challenge come winter time as the temperature can fluctuate widely. Most winters we see temperatures between +5°C (41°F) and as low as -30°C (-22°F). All three of my trees are on the small to medium size and are all incredibly sensitive to rapid changes in temperature. For the last two years I've been wintering them by placing them by my windowsill inside my house. I know this is incorrect and the overwhelming amount of posts saying so on these forums are what drove me to post.

Last winter the shock of the low humidity in my house and the change from being an indoor tree for four months and then being placed back outside, almost killed my cherry tree Blossom. She bounced back fairly quickly after dropping all of her leaves but this winter I want to do better and put less stress on all three. Fortunately, we've had a fairly mild fall here in Toronto up until now, and I've been able to keep all three bonsai outside as temperatures haven't gone much lover than +5°C (41°F).

Over the next few weeks it looks like it's going to get much colder (-7°C (19.4°F)) and sadly I still don't have a good solution. Please help! I have a number of indoor and outdoor spaces at my disposal and a wide range of grow lights and humidity/temperature control systems that I've used for other gardening projects. I live in a fairly small townhouse but have access to a garage that I'm currently using as a maker space into which I may introduce humidity/temperature control.

Garage/maker space

In light of the above, what would be a good setting/setup to winter these three trees?

What are the light, temperature and humidity needs of cherry and junipers during their dormant period?

Because I've never properly wintered my trees before what changes can I expect in my bonsais? (dropping/colour of leaves, dried foliage, change in bark colour, etc...)

Any advice is welcome.


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Questions Wintering Three Trees 1 week 6 days ago #73820

  • Tropfrog
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There is a coreleation between a trees need for light and the temperature. The lower the temperature, the less light is needed. For most trees 5c is very good and not much light is needed. At that temperature the humidity is next to allways enough as relative humidity is also dependent on temperature.

Junipers can be outdoors all year, no problem.

Check out nigel saunders "the bonsai zone" on Youtube, I think he is local to you.

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