Baobab African Bonsai for sale | Kremetart | Adansonia digitata

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Can Baobab be grown as a bonsai?

Baobab (uniquely identified by it's scientific name Adansonia digitata) is an iconic African tree. It is a "must" for inclusion in our African Bonsai product range (#AfricanBonsai). The species' gigantic size, thick-set trunk and bulky, short branches are unique in the landscape. Baobab is a deciduous, slow growing tree. It buds in early spring and sheds leaves in late autumn, leaving the tree leafless for about 3 months. During this time you can enjoy Baobab's statemen-like presentation. Adansonia digitata bears showy cream-white flowers, which develop into large ovoid fruit. It is unlikely though, that it will flower and fruit as a bonsai. Baobab is one of the of trees of the Kruger National Park that can also be grown as a bonsai. It is included it in our Kruger Park bonsai gallery. (Search #KNPAfricanBonsai). Figure 1 shows the distribution map for Adansonia digitata.

Baobab distribution map | Adansonia digitata

Figure 1. Distribution map of Baobab. Courtesy Keith Coates  Palgrave 2002.

Cities per country (dots) from left to right:

Namibia  -Walvisbay

                -Windhoek

South Africa  -Cape town

                       -Gqeberha (prev Port Elizabeth) 

                       -Bloemfontein

                       -East London 

                       -Johannesburg

                       -Durban 

Botswana   - Gaberone

Zimbabwe  - Harare

Mozambique - Maputu

                       - Beira

Specimen Baobab tree in mid-summer. Image taken on Njalaland hiking trail, Kruger National Park 

Specimen Baobab tree | Kremetart boom | Adansonia digitata, Kruger National Park

The baobab species grows really big! Image taken on Njalaland trail, Kruger National Park.

Really BIG Baobab tree | Kremetart boom | Adansonia digitata, Kruger National Park

Elephants graze the bark of Baobab. Modest to even severe grazing does not harm the tree. Repeated severe grazing will eventually kill it.

Baobab tree showing elephant inflicted damage | Kremetart boom | Adansonia digitata, Kruger National Park

Baobab African Bonsai shapes and size

Our size and shape information is based on observation in nature, experience gained by growing Baobab at our Treeshop nursery and descriptions found in authoritative handbooks.

Observed the upright trunk of the tree, which breaks into a few thickset branches at more or less the same height.  Some grow upward to form a dome-like canopy; some grow horizontal and even slightly downward, thus forming a crown that is approximately as wide as the tree is high. Branches form at a trunk height about one third of the tree's mature height. (See images above). At Treeshop we use these geometric guidelines to create a bonsai that truly reflects the mature shape of a specimen Baobab tree. Adansonia digitata's natural shape, as illustrated in the above images, make for an iconic African style. It is our view that Boabab is the only species worthy of this style. Other Southern African species should not be (artificially) trained to represent it. Rather research other species' growth forms to find their respective styles. Each one deserves its own unique place in the African Bonsai space. 

The Table below gives approximate height that Baobab bonsais may achieve in different containers sizes:

Container size          |  2-6 Liter  |  25 Liter  |  80 Liter  

Bonsai tree height   |     20cm    | 40cm       |   120cm  

How do I care for my Baobab African Bonsai?

Baobab is a slow grower and must shaped and pruned with care. It takes time for the tree to develop those characteristic swollen trunk and branches. Place it in full sunlight during the growing period (from just before budding up to late autumn). Provide for good air circulation around the tree. We recommend that you reduce watering in autumn to force it into rest. You can (and should) take it inside if your winter temperature falls below zero. Although big trees are remarkably frost tolerant, small trees (and bonsais) are not.

Water needs depend on climatic conditions and leaf mass. The species is very water wise. Generally, it requires moderate water in summer and almost nothing in winter.

Feed your Boabab African Bonsai with a leaf stimulating fertilizer in late winter, at least 4 weeks before leaf budding, and again in mid-summer. More on this topic in our blog post. (To follow)

Baobab is not pest prone. The best way to control pests is to keep it in in a sunny, well-ventilated spot. Keep your tree healthy and avoid the use of pesticides.

Baobab African Bonsai stock for sale

 

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To enquire, please fill out our contact form. Remember to provide stock numbers (printed in yellow on image) for the products you are interested in. Please note stock tagged as "Bonsai in training" is currently not for sale.

Stock available in small pots (2-6 Liter)  

Baobab African Bonsai for sale | #baobabafricanbonsai | Kremetart boom | Adansonia digitata

Stock available in medium pots (25 Liter)

Work in Progress

Stock available in large pots (80Liter)

Work in Progress