Portulacaria crassula loses leaves

Question: portulacaria crassula loses leaves

good morning, I recently bought this bonsai but a few days ago it made a strange mold on the ground and loses a few leaves, I keep it at home on the table in front of the window door in the room, I think it takes enough light and also watering it by immersing it in its saucer full of water about 1 to 2 times a week when the soil is dry below and above, I give him the fertilizer about every 10 days ... where am I wrong? I am desperate, my first bonsai died for a fungus, I would not repeat the experience…

Answer: portulacaria crassula loses leaves

Dear Geneva,
the portulacaria afra is a succulent, belonging to the crassulaceous family, in fact as bonsai two different species are sold, both with the name of portulacaria bonsai, or the portulacaria afra, and the crassula portulacea; they are both very similar, they are succulents, originating from Africa. They are resistant and vigorous plants, which can live even in quite cold areas, with lows close to zero (or even less if properly cultivated), and even in places that are not too bright. Probably yours is getting sick due to excessive watering, in fact these plants, in the months characterized by short days, must remain in an almost completely dry soil, to be bathed only sporadically; while more regular watering should be provided in the months with long days, such as the spring and summer months. In fact, the best place to cultivate these bonsai trees would be the terrace, in a semi-shaded area, with a few hours of direct sunlight per day, possibly not in the hottest hours. During the winter they may need protection, even when the vessel is placed near the walls of the house, in an area sheltered from the wind; a layer of non-woven fabric, which keeps the frost away, may be sufficient; in this case the plants will water only from April to September-October. Portulacaria bloom in late winter, but flowering does not occur if the plants are constantly grown in the heat, or in the apartment. Give a fertilizer for succulent plants, poor in nitrogen, from April to September, about every 20 days; and uses, for the cultivation, a very porous and very well drained soil, consisting largely of lapillus or pumice stone.