Care and maintenance of bonsai hinoki
Hinoki bonsai

Hinoki bonsai

Hinoki cypress are native to southeast Asia. They are long lived and pest resistant. The striking color, compact foliage, and slow growth habit make hinoki bonsai highly prized. This advice is not a comprehensive guide, it's intended to tide you over until you can consult an authoritative source.

Watering. Don’t allow your tree to dry out. The easiest way to establish a watering schedule is to dig a half inch into the soil. If it’s moist you can go another day. If not moist then it’s time to water. With well draining soil you can establish a predictable routine.

Light. Hinokis will retain their best color in semi shade, but, will tolerate full sun.

Pest control. Hinokis are relatively pest free, but, a loss of color might indicate spider mites. Spray with a broad spectrum systemic pesticide.

Pruning. These trees are slow growing and do not bud back. If you let the branches grow too far out and then try to trim back to force back budding, you’re out of luck. To avoid this issue prune branches back as far as possible while still leaving some foliage. Remove both up and down growing sprays of foliage at least once a year. If the clouds of foliage get dense you can thin them out.

Repotting. Every two to three years remove the tree from it’s pot. Trim an inch or so around the entire root ball. Trim off about one third from the bottom of the root ball. Add soil to the pot and around the edges and you’re good to go. You will do this just as the tree is coming out of dormancy and starting to grow.

Temperature. These trees are hardy to zone five, but, a little shelter is a good idea.

Fertilizing. Any houseplant fertilizer will work. Apply once a month at the recommended level.