The f. benjamin is a species native to tropical Asia; in nature it reaches the size of large trees, such as oaks or beeches. In pots, however, it remains of more modest measures, generally not exceeding 2-3 meters in height. There are also varieties selected for their particularly modest size, which do not exceed 65-75 cm in height.
The ficus has foliage of modest size, glossy and slightly coriaceous; the colour is dark green, but on the market there are species with variegated foliage or with leaves with wavy margin, slightly more decorative than the typical species.
- In nature, the ficus elastica is a large tree, which reaches 25-30 meters and grows in the tropical forests of Asia, in pot has erect habit, poorly branched, and reaches 200-300 meters.
- Ficus benjamina belongs to the Moraceae family and is native to Southeast Asia and Oceania. It is a tree that can reach 30 meters in height where it is endemic (or in areas with climates of up to …
- It is a shrub or a small evergreen tree, native to central-southern Asia; in the wild, the adult specimens keep their dimensions close to the 2 m of height. They have thin stems and ramify…
- Evergreen tree originating in Australia and New Zealand, the ficus australe or ficus rubiginosa can reach 8-10 metres high in the wild, but in a container it can be kept within 2-3 metres of height.
This is also a tropical plant, in pot it keeps below two meters in height, but in nature it reaches 20-30 meters over the years; from this plant, in the places of origin, latex is extracted to produce a type of rubber, the rubber. The foliage of the elastic ficus is large in size, oval, very leathery and thick; dark green in colour in the species, however, there are varieties with leaves streaked with yellow or white.
often the thin bracts that wrap around the leaves that are sprouting are pinkish, very decorative.
Very similar in appearance to the ficus benjamin, the ficus retusa has thicker and smaller foliage, is very often grown as bonsai, because it is easily grown in very small containers and quickly reaches the appearance of the old tree typical of bonsai. There are also varieties cultivated for their particularly small foliage, with which they produce bonsai in a very low number of years.
Ficus – Ficus benjamin: Growing
These majestic plants seem to have adapted perfectly to the climate of our homes, where they develop luxuriant and healthy, but fear some particular conditions, which can cause serious damage.
The ficus do not fear much the cold, and can remain even at only 10-12°C of temperature for long periods of time, therefore they might find room also in a temperate greenhouse or in a stairwell. What they fear most are the temperature changes: a sudden drop in temperature of 5-8 degrees causes the yellowing and the fall of large quantities of foliage, so it is good to place the plant in a place not subject to temperature changes, then away from heat sources, doors, windows.
Another fundamental element for the good cultivation of these species is the water; these plants do not need too regular watering, it is always good to wait for the soil to be dry before providing more watering, and, especially in winter, can withstand short periods of time with the soil completely dry, but it is essential to provide good room humidity, especially during the hottest and driest months or when in the house we have active heating or air conditioning.
To keep the ambient humidity high, it is sufficient to periodically vaporize the entire canopy with demineralized water.
At the end of the winter, let’s repot our plants, mixing with the soil some slow release granular fertilizer, which will provide mineral salts for the whole summer season; if possible, let’s bring the plants to the open air, where they will enjoy a good air exchange and a good ventilation.
When we move our ficuses from the inside of the house to the outside, on a sheltered terrace or in a shady garden, we take advantage to clean the foliage from the dust of the house, possibly making the plant a nice “shower” with the lance of the garden.
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