The Japanese Black Pine is one of the most famous and cherished species used for bonsai. A beautiful conifer that flushes twice per year, these are suited to almost any style of bonsai you wish to create. They can be grown large relatively quickly, or be twisted up with wire into an interesting shohin specimen. Specifically, these are Mikawa Japanese Black Pine which are known for their ability to thicken up quickly and produce great bark. Grown from seed at Kaede Bonsai-en, these trees are well established in 2 1/4" containers.
Common Name(s): Japanese Black Pine, Kuromatsu
Latin Name: Pinus thunbergii
Type: Evergreen conifer
Native to: Coastal Japan and South Korea
Climate: Hardy from Zones 5-9. They enjoy hot summers as long as they are watered adequately and also benefit from the cold of winter. Here in Zone 7b, we overwinter our Japanese Black Pines outside on a bench in a semi-protected area (next to a building).
Care: The Japanese Black Pine will grow vigorously if provided adequate sun, water, and fertilizer. Make sure that the soil is well-draining though, as they do not do well in extremely wet environments.
Notes: This is a pine and the soil is likely to contain mycorrhizae, a beneficial fungus that has a symbiotic relationship with pines. This is a white fungus that occupies the soil that some may mistake for mold or other harmful fungi. Do not fret if you find mycorrhizae in your soil, it is a great sign of soil health!