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Banyan tree (scientific name Ficus benghalensis, also spelled Banian) is a multiple-fruit bearing tree with large, leathery, glossy, green, and elliptical leaves. It is popularly known as the National Tree of India. Aerial roots are the distinctive visual draw to banyan-style bonsai trees. Making a banyan bonsai is about encouraging aerial roots to form on bark in the upper tree and grow down into the soil. The roots that drop near the base can fuse with the main trunk, giving the tree a larger profile. Roots that drop from farther down the branches create secondary trunks, giving a single tree the look of a dense grove.
Plant Type: Indoor Plant, All Season Plant
Product Height: 1 – 2 feet (Including pot)
Age: 12 years
Sunlight: The Banyan is a tropical and sub-tropical species that requires sunlight, but likes to live indoors. You can ‘let it out from time to time during spring and summer, but not for long periods of time!
Position: It is advised to set up your Banyan near a window and rotate it throughout the day or week so it can find sunlight on every inch! Keep the tree in warm temperatures. The tree can survive temperatures in the lower 40’s and upper 30’s, but will not be in the high growth phase that produces aerial roots. If you are trying to encourage the roots during a season other than summer, this may require bringing the bonsai tree indoors.
Watering: Water your Banyan daily throughout the year. Water it by misting with a misting bottle. If you cannot water it for a couple of days and cannot get a neighbor to, place the pot in a tray with about 1cm of water for it to uptake slowly. Ensure your soil has adequate drainage but do not allow it to dry out. Either extreme will kill it.
Feeding: Feed your Banyan through the growing season (Spring), use a low-nitrogen fertilizer.
Pruning: The Banyan Bonsai tree is generally slow growing and can be pruned easily at the start of Spring and then throughout Summer. Prune back as much growth as you like. Ensure you prune all growth in early Spring and ensure the branches are all evenly spaced and of similar length.
Repotting: Repot your Banyan Bonsai tree every 2 years. Trim off a third of its roots.