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Overview : The Cotoneaster is a hardy, easy-to-grow plant, whose small, attractive leaves and flowers make it an excellent candidate for bonsai cultivation. There are a wide range of varieties - both deciduous and evergreen in spreading, upright or prostrate forms. In the spring, the Cotoneaster's glossy green foliage is covered with tiny white flowers and for some varieties, shortly after with masses of minute bright red berries. It is suited to many styles, particularly cascade, informal upright, root over rock, root on rock and clump, best shown as small to medium size bonsai.

Varieties most suited to bonsai are: Cotoneaster horizontalis, Cotoneaster Compacta Nana, Cotoneaster Congestus, Cotoneaster Microphyllus.

General Care : Should be kept in a sunny position for maximum results, but able to grow in shade. Protect from frost.

Water frequently during summer, less during winter but prevent soil from drying out. This applies especially for evergreen varieties. Fertilise during growing season, except during the fruiting and flowering period.

The Cotoneaster is very tolerant of heavy pruning. Constantly trim back new shoots during growing period to keep the plant neat. Cut back old growth during the spring.
Wiring can also be done at this time.

Other Comments : Extremely easy to propagate. Either take some cuttings from an established plant in your area, or purchase a plant from a nursery and grow it as a parent plant to take cuttings from to make many more plants.

People usually grow Cotoneasters in extravagantly-colored pots such as aqua, ultramarine blue and bright green to contrast with the bright red berries produced in early spring. Pots can also be chosen to complement or contrast the glossy green foliage.

The Cotoneaster's miniature leaves, flowers and berries make it particularly suitable to mame, or mini bonsai.

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