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I've a four and a half year old ficus bonsai. All of a sudden since yesterday, I spotted this root like structure from the woody stems at the neck of the tree. Can someone identify what is this and why this is happening. Is it bad? Should I get rid of it?
The weather over here is monsoon.

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  • ...that split on the left of the trunk from which the roots are coming and the bulk of the dying chunk that was separated needs to be removed...someday. Have you considered a Bonsai Class? This plant is 4.5 years old. Young but think about all that work all those years...Bonsai is our most artificial of all gardening techniques. Totally dependent on you for every little thing! There are Bonsai 'sitting' places for going on vacations! If someone can grow a Bonsai successfully, they will not have problems with any other gardening
    – stormy
    Commented Jul 18, 2018 at 3:25
  • Leave that new root alone for sure. Your Bonsai has one of the most gorgeous trunks I've ever seen for Bonsai. Looks as if you are doing just fine so trying to fix something that ain't broken makes little sense. Can you imagine 200 years old Bonsai? Or older? Bonsai is a major PET. Love it when people give a 25 year old plus Bonsai as a gift and the recipients know little about botany much less Bonsai. Usually disastrous. Your plant would wow the Master Bonsai teacher...that pot however cute needs to be upgraded. Amazing trunk!
    – stormy
    Commented Jul 18, 2018 at 3:55
  • The leaves look anemic. Have you fertilized at all? Make another question for that subject alone! Bonsai and fertilizer is an entire subject all by itself.
    – stormy
    Commented Jul 18, 2018 at 4:01
  • Yes! It's banyan. And you caught that right. This was under the care of someone else until it was gifted to me and I've been taking care of it for the past six months. I don't know much about botany i'm afraid. I haven't pruned it's roots before, I absolutely dread those, I guess I've to do it at some point. I have been watering once every day usually during the summer, subject to need. I prefer to check if the soil is sufficiently moist first. Is this a correct way to water? Thank you so much for your reply, the little plant is indeed awesome.
    – Chd
    Commented Jul 18, 2018 at 9:40
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    And it needs a new pot, that is too much soil for a Bonsai. See the water marks on the roots? I'd let it dry out a bit more in between waterings until you get a new shallower pot.
    – stormy
    Commented Jul 18, 2018 at 20:31

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Ariel Roots on Banyan Bonsai how to promote and protect

Clarissa, this must be an adventitious root, Ficus is known for this. Banyan Tree? What worries me is that this gorgeous beginning of a Bonsai is telling us it needs MORE of something. Your tree needs a root pruning and a Bonsai type pot (I would get a drain hole, they do come without but that is for Bonsai Masters). Have you any knowledge of root pruning? What are you watering practices? It is normal for Bonsai to be watered, soaked! every day or at least every other day depending on plant and pot and environment. Have you used fertilizer at all?

That split on the left of the trunk from which the roots are coming and the bulk of the dying chunk that was separated needs to be removed...someday. Have you considered a Bonsai Class? This plant is 4.5 years old. Young but think about all that work all those years...Bonsai is our most artificial of all gardening techniques. Totally dependent on you for every little thing! There are Bonsai Baby'sitting' places for going on vacations! If someone can grow a Bonsai successfully, they will not have problems with any other gardening, or at least fewer problems.

Yes, Clarissa, your watering habits are sound. If you take a bucket of water that the whole pot fits easily and immerse the entire pot until the bubbles stop that is the best way to water Bonsai. Have you ever seen a real one? In Hawaii? As kids we were nuts about them. Their roots make 'rooms' and a bit of a maze. Had to watch out for orb spiders tho. Ugh to run into one! Don't worry about root pruning yet. Look up how to 'root prune a Bonsai' on the internet first... I'll send a link. Get liquid Miracle Gro, use a little every OTHER time you water for now...

And don't forget to look for a new pot, that is too much soil for a Bonsai. See the water marks on the roots? I'd let it dry out a bit more in between waterings until you get a new shallower pot.

The first link I sent is fun, I love how Indians talk, seriously. Spraying the leaves and trunk and aerial roots is a good thing to remove dust. The rocks in the tray is the best way to raise humidity for plants indoors. It also allows for better drainage. Your pot should never sit in water but sitting on top of the pebbles is perfect.

I love it when the Banyan Hunter (?) tells you to MAKE a greenhouse for your Banyan Bonsai. Grins. I am assuming you live somewhere on the other side of the Pacific Ocean? That is where they call 'hurricanes' Monsoons or Typhoons. Lots of humidity. If you have a covered patio this plant would do well, out of the sun, under the roof of a porch, close to the home. Where is it that you live? The humidity out of doors might be perfect with no help from watered pebbles.

Pruning Bonsai This is a good video on pruning Bonsai, I liked the detail. I did NOT like pruning so drastically. Arghhhh! No plant should be pruned more than 1/3 at a time. Ugh. Plants amaze me at how tough they are! This guy knows what he is talking about. It is true that the entire point is to REDUCE vigor a bit. Hey, I am learning as well. I've had one gorgeous Bonsai that died because I went on vacation and someone forgot to water the entire time. Major bummer. Worse was that someone walked outside with my cockatiel.

Have fun with this baby!

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