Bonsai elm tree

Question: Elm Bonsai

I'm Martina and I have a bonsai elm for three years. This spring for the first time I have repotted it and since then I regularly use the fertilizer, despite this a few weeks the leaves have completely dried up and even if previously it had already happened this time I fear that it will not recover. What can I do? But above all, where can I have gone wrong? The bonsai is on the balcony in a sunny position

Answer: Elm Bonsai

Gentile Martina,
elm bonsai are outdoor plants, quite easy to grow; but they are living beings, and are cultivated in tiny containers, in extreme conditions; it is therefore not possible to decide once and for all the position to cultivate a bonsai, as over the years the seasons differ greatly from each other, and force the plants to a continuous adaptation. Which unfortunately is not always possible for a bonsai, which lives in a tiny vase, with the only watering you provide. The desiccation of the leaves generally takes place, typically, due to drought, or extreme heat, or even, on the contrary, due to cold and excessive watering. In your case I think it is an excess of heat, as your elm is placed on a terrace (and therefore in a place slightly sheltered from the weather and rain, and slightly heated by the walls of the house), in the middle of summer, in direct sun. Even the bonsai plants that love the strong brightness and the direct sun, during the summer months should be moved in half shade, especially during the particularly hot and dry seasons. If in winter the direct sun for many hours is pleasant for your bonsai, in July, with a night-time minimum above 25 ° C, your bonsai will like a semi-shading, so that it can receive direct sunlight only in the most hours. fresh of the day, when they do not burn it. An excess of sun, in addition to damaging the leaves directly, can also constantly dry the soil, even excessively, and thus cause the leaves to fall due to drought. I know that elms, in the wild, live in the sun outdoors, but elms grown in the open ground have a large root system at their disposal and all the land they want, where they can seek humidity in depth if necessary.