Podocarpus Bonsai Care Tips
General Information: This upright, dense evergreen has pointed, leathery, dark green leaves arranged on stiff, symmetrical branches and works very well as a screen, hedge, strong accent plant, or framing tree. The crown forms a somewhat pyramidal to oval outline. Able to reach 90 feet in height, Nagi Podocarpus is usually seen at 30 to 40 feet in height due to the moderately-slow growth rate. Compact branching habit and very dark green foliage make this a dense tree in full sun, more open but surprisingly dense in shade.
Old Podocarpus bonsai are impressive with their stately elegance. Although trunk and bark formation always takes quite a few years, Podocarpus growth varies with climate - slow-growing indoors and towards the cooler end of their range, fast-growing in sunny areas. Their evergreen leaves are similar in formation and shape to yews, although Podocarpus leaves are larger - just under 2 inches to a maximum of 4 inches.
Lighting: Likes direct sunlight. Too little light will result in large, elongated needles. Can survive, however, on as little as 800 Lux. In very sun-intense areas, Podocarpus may suffer leaf-burn if not given shade during the hottest part of the day.
Temperature: Zones 9 through 11. Will survive light frost, but for best results, keep above 55F. Can be grown successfully indoors in a well-lit spot. Prefers winter temperatures between 61-68F.
Watering: Likes slightly moist soil, but be sure to provide adequate drainage. Gray needles are a sign of overwatering. Daily misting is appreciated by indoor plants.