Knowing what kind and how to grow is just part and parcel of successfully growing a bonsai tree. In order to provide the plant with the best possible care, it is important that you are equipped with necessary and appropriate tools. For beginners, it is advised to own some basic tools as a start and invest of more sophisticated once as you progress.
There may be a lot of brands that offer different bonsai tools. However, in order to get the best value for your money, it is important to buy those with unquestionable quality. They may be a little bit more pricey than the rest but they are more cost effective.
Why Not Use Normal Tools?
You may wonder why do you have to purchase different tools for your bonsai tree. Can you not use ordinary gardening tools? The answer is no. bonsai plants may be a little delicate compared to normal plants. Thus, specialized tools specifically designed for growing bonsai is necessary to prevent any untoward damage to the plant
Here are some of the basic tools that every bonsai grower must have:
Concave Pruner – this is the most basic tool and a must have for every bonsai grower. Concave pruner is used to prune or remove branches in a manner that it promotes fast healing of the cut part. When used, it leaves a concave shaped cut or wound where it got its name. The concave wound on the trunks is intentional as wounds from pruning generally heal from the sides instead of from the top. The most common type of concave pruner is 8 inches long. This size can be used to branches no more than one and a half inch in diameter. Always make sure to follow the basic rule of thumb when it comes to tools. You should not use tools to cut branches whose size is is larger than half of the size of the pruner.
Bud Scissors – if pruners are for branches, bud scissors are for leaves, buds and small branches. The tip of this tool is made up of short yet sharp blades that enable you to reach the interior parts of the bonsai to trim with excellent precision. For better tool efficiency, never use bud scissors on cutting sturdy branches and twigs. Always use tools for their intended purpose.
Bonsai Wire Cutters – at one point, you will eventually have to shape your bonsai into your desired form. After all, that is one of the reasons why people grow them. Guys wires and aluminum wires are more commonly used in wiring bonsai trees. During the wiring process, you may use ordinary wire cutters that you can see on hardware. However, when the time comes that you need to remove those wires, it is now a different story. This is where you will be needing bonsai wire cutters. This tool is specially designed to cut wires that are very close to the branches of the tree without cutting the bark itself. The short, yet sharp blades, of this tools gives you a mechanical advantage maneuvering through the wired branches.
Knob Cutter – you may not use this tool as often as the others but it has its unique purpose. Designed to have tips like that of sphere cut into two, knob cutter can easily bite in the trunk of the tree removing unwanted stubs. You may also use this tool to get rid of undesirable roots on the trunk and callouses. It is a good practice to oil the knob of this tool to prevent rusting and corrosion.
The Root Cutter – as the name implies, it is the best tool to be used in pruning the roots of your bonsai tree. Remember, the root system of most bonsais are delicate and sensitive. If you are not using the appropriate tool, you may end up killing the tree. It has thicker and coarser blades specifically designed for root pruning during re-potting of the plant. In some cases, you can use the root cutter as a substitute to your concave pruner should the latter is small enough for the part that you want to cut.
There still miscellaneous tools that you may need as a bonsai grower. These include root hook for untangling roots, saws, tweezers and carving tools for shaping the bonsai and moisture meters to determine the water content of the soil. All of the tools must be carefully cleaned and maintained for a long lasting use. If a grower uses bonsai tools properly, you may need not to purchase a replacement anytime soon.