Small plant native to China and the Himalaya, the genus has about 50 deciduous or evergreen species with an erect or prostrate habit (C.Horizontalis); widely used for hedges and borders due to the compactness of the crown and the numerous branches, in nature it can reach three meters in height.
It has very small, shiny, bright green leaves that turn red in the fall. In spring it produces small white flowers, followed by orange or red berries, similar to very small apples, gathered in bunches, very decorative. The bark is usually dark and smooth, it becomes wrinkled in adult plants.
Plant highly recommended as a bonsai, even for beginners, since it does not present particular cultivation difficulties, it also has the advantage of being easily available, at low prices.
Pruning, display and watering
Pruning: it is carried out in the spring, before flowering, removing the oldest branches; during the growing season it is advisable to trim the shoots leaving 1-2 leaves. The metal wire can be applied at any time of the year, although it is not recommended to do it during flowering.
Exposure: the cotoneaster particularly likes sunny positions, even in summer. It does not fear the cold.
Watering: the soil must be kept constantly humid, supplying water frequently and avoiding water stagnation; in summer the cotoneaster also bears short periods of drought (one or two days). Every 10-15 days add bonsai fertilizer to the irrigating water, from March to October.