How to repot a Bonsai Tree videos


The repotting of a bonsai is an essential step in the growing process of your bonsai.

In the wild the roots system of a tree are becoming larger and are expanding in all direction (sometimes very deeply) to be able to furnish nourishment to the ever growing plant above the surface of the soil. For a plant in a container like the bonsai the roots are confined and need constant external supply of water and nutrient to survive.

After a while the roots are growing and gradually fill the pot eventually starting to grow out through the pot holes. This is what we call being “pot bound”. At this stage the soil is deteriorating and our tree begin to be in stress and to suffer.

The last thing we want to see is a bonsai suffering.

It is the perfect time for repotting assuming the tree is towards the end of his dormancy period when the stress of the process will be minimal. Then generally at the beginning of the spring season it will be easier for the bonsai to recover and repair its roots Repotting during the growing period can be highly stressful and fatal for the bonsai.

It is quite uneasy to give a definitive date for repotting, it depends of the tree species, the local climate, the direct environment. The rule of thumbs says that a bonsai has to be repot when it is pot-bound.It can take from one to five years according to the tree species, his age, the size of the container, the degree of development of the root-ball.

With a regular plant the aim of repotting is to provide a larger container to allow more space and fresh compost to rejuvenate the plant and to permit it to grow bigger.

With bonsai the process is similar although slightly different because we prune the roots. The art of bonsai is to keep the tree small isn’t it?. The pruning of the roots is like Hercules severing the heads of the Lernaean Hydra. When one of the nine heads w’s sliced off, two were growing instead.

The roots of the bonsai are like the mythological Hydra, for every root that is trimmed two or three new roots will arise from the root tip that was pruned.

Over the years, when the process of repotting and root pruning is repeated the root system will become denser and denser with a multitude of fine feeder roots. So for a defined volume of roots the capacity of water and nutrients absorption will dramatically increase.

When the time is coming for the repotting, be prepared. The less time you work, the less time the roots will be exposed to air.

Before you engage any action, like removing the bonsai from his present pot, write down every steps so you won’t be surfing the net for information or doing research at your local library while your bonsai is agonizing on the workbench.

Prepare the tools of the trade, the best appropriate bonsai soil you can get, mesh, wire and a ready to use bonsai pot that you choose according to the rules. 




Todd B. Hansen owner of Sanctuary Bonsai ( demonstrates step-by-step how to correctly re-pot and care for a Bonsai tree. Todd Hansen, apprentice Lydia Cruz, and many friends have created an Asian influenced garden and Bonsai nursery through a labor of love. Their goal is to provide beginner and serious Bonsai artists with top quality pre-bonsai whether nursery grown or collected.


How to repot a Bonsai Tree (Part 1)

How to repot a Bonsai Tree (Part 2)

How to repot a Bonsai Tree (Part 3)