Which Is The Best Soil For Juniper Bonsai?

Packaged specialized soil for bonsai is the ideal pick you should go for

Best soil for juniper bonsai



Bonsai Juniper is known for its stunning and ornamental appearance. Whether you want to add them indoors or outdoors, they will flourish well. It’s because of their unique properties to survive in all kinds of environmental conditions.
But to keep this special plant happy and thriving, you need to take good care of it. It starts with choosing the best soil for juniper bonsais because, without good soil, it won’t get the nutrients it needs to flourish.
So, here we are sharing everything that you should know about choosing the perfect soil for your juniper bonsais. Firstly, go for packed options, rather than making it at home. Secondly, make sure the soil pH is not alkaline. And thirdly, the soil must be very well drained, moist and not too heavy that prevents aeration.

Juniper Bonsai Overview

Scientific Name Juniperus
Family Cupressaceae
Size 3–6 feet height and 1–3 feet spread
Soil pH and Type Neutral to acidic, well-drained, moist bonsai soil
Sunlight Full sunlight
Temperature Low temperatures about 10 degrees Fahrenheit


Which Is The Best Soil For Juniper Bonsai?

If you want to see your juniper bonsai growing healthy, it’s advised to go for a packaged soil mix specially made for bonsais. You can find various packed bonsai soil mixtures on the market. Make sure to pick one that is well-draining, and moisture-retaining. These qualities allow an easy flow of water and air toward the bonsai roots. Also, the pH should range from acidic to neutral, do not go for alkaline soil.
Component-wise, typically the best bonsai soil for juniper should include pumice, organic potting soil mix, fine gravel, and akadama. All of these are available at most plant stores and garden centers. These days you can even buy them online from well-known bonsai manufacturers.


Things That Degrade the Soil Quality For Bonsai Juniper

Choosing the correct soil for bonsai is a necessary factor that goes into growing a happy and healthy plant. On the other hand, if you choose the wrong soil, it can have a really bad impact on your bonsai plant growth.
So, here are a few things that you should remember to maintain the quality of your soil mix.

  • Avoid using regular potting soil which is heavy and compact. It is so because it can lead to problems like improper drainage and rotting roots.
  • Never add cat litter or wood ash to the bonsai soil mix. It will lead to increased water retention.
  • Lack of fertilizers or no fertilization can lower the nutrient content in your bonsai soil.
  • Likewise, adding excess fertilizers can damage the quality of your bonsai soil.
  • It should not contain any large size particles that affect the aeration and prevent oxygen flow towards bonsai roots.
  • The pH level of your bonsai soil should not be on the extreme side. The best soil for juniper bonsai tree has a neutral pH level between 6 and 7.5.


What Should You Do: Buy Packaged Bonsai Soil or Prepare Your Own Mix?

When it comes to bonsai plants, one of the most debated questions is – should I prepare a soil mix myself? Basically, the secret ingredient to Bonsai’s health is good soil and pruning. Of course, you can use a homemade soil mixture for your juniper bonsai. But we advise you to use packed ones.
This is so because packaged soils are prepared specially for growing bonsai trees after careful observation by experts. Hence, there is little to no chance of things going sideways. On the other hand, if you prepare the soil yourself, it is a possibility that the composition could go wrong adversely affecting the plant.

What Options Do You Have In Packaged Soil Bags For Juniper Bonsais?

Choosing the right bonsai soil is quite important for the ideal growth of junipers. You can find many commercially available options when it comes to the best soil mix for juniper bonsai. Here we have listed a few options available online:
A. Brussel’s Bonsai Professional Blend Soil – It is a well-formulated soil mix created for all kinds of bonsai plants like jades, Chinese elms, junipers, Ficus, and other species.
B. Bonsai Soil Premium All Purpose Blend – If you want to nourish your plant, so it can thrive properly, just go for this soil mix. It’s a premixed and ready-to-use soil that will support your plant growth. It is ideal for all varieties of bonsai like bald cypress, azalea, and more. The good part is that it improves the absorption of fertilizers and enhances the aeration of the roots.

Fertilizing Juniper Bonsai

If your bonsai is placed outside, you can add a nitrogen-rich fertilizer with an NPK ratio of 10:6:6. A water soluble fertilizer is ideal, but you could use other types as well for your juniper bonsai’s care.
Whereas, in spring and summer seasons, use a balanced juniper bonsai fertilizer such as NPK 6:6:6. In the autumn season, you should feed your plants with NPK 3:6:6 fertilizer which is low on nitrogen.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q. What can I use instead of akadama?

Ans. Some people might find Akadama a little expensive. Don’t worry. You can use perlite, grit, baked or fired clays, and turface as a substitute for akadama.

Q. Is cat litter good for bonsai?

Ans. We advise against using kitty litter. It is so because it increases the water retention in the soil causing drainage issues and water pooling.

Q. Is perlite good for bonsai?

Ans. Yes, perlite or say pumice is a prominent component of the juniper bonsai soil. Being lightweight, it easily floats on your plant’s water surface. Since succulents like juniper bonsai need quick drainage of water, adding perlite to its soil mix is a perfect option. It improves water retention and the aeration quality of the soil.


Q. Is cactus soil good for juniper bonsai?

Ans. Of course, juniper bonsai loves to flourish when planted in cactus soil. This type of soil is perfect for their growth because bonsai plants have great water-retaining ability (just as needed) and highly permeable texture. Plus, it is composed of inorganic elements that promote healthy juniper growth.
Related: Japanese Juniper Bonsai Care Guide

Summing up…

So, the best bonsai soil for juniper would be a well-draining one with the ability to hold moisture. Also, texture wise it will be a grainy one with lots of sand, grit, perlite, or akadama. If your soil needs extra nourishment, use a good-quality water-soluble fertilizer during the growing season. They can easily seep through the bonsai soil mix.