Like all natural things our plants grow and change over time, but don’t worry if your Bonsai starts to look a little different and you think it's time for a trim. The first and most important thing to remember is that pruning your Bonsai tree is relatively easy and can actually be quite fun! There are generally two types and purposes of Bonsai pruning; maintenance-pruning which involves maintaining and refining the existing shape of a Bonsai, and the other is structural-pruning, a type of more rigorous pruning to give a tree its basic shape.
The general approach to pruning is to cut any leaves on a branch that are growing over around 5 or more leaves. The young shoots that will come through are flexible, which makes trimming them much easier. However, when the tree grows mature branches, you can still cut them off to help maintain the health of the Bonsai and promote growth elsewhere.
Indoor Bonsai trees can be pruned all year round, not just during the growing season, so when you notice that it has started to look a little over grown you can begin pruning. If you notice any discoloured branches and leaves, these should always be pruned because dead branches can carry disease which could pass on to the rest of the tree, killing your Bonsai overall.
Remember, only cut a little at a time. Step back and look at your plant before deciding to cut more off. Pruning your Bonsai should be an enjoyable activity that brings happiness and relieves stress, so take your time and get creative! Don't worry if you have made a mistake, it's all part of looking after a Bonsai.
Any household scissors will suffice, but we recommend pruning-specific scissors for smooth cuts which we sell on our site to make Bonsai care all the more easy for you. Visit the link here to find them, alongside our Bonsai fertiliser, on our website: