Taking Care Of Bonsai Trees
Caring for bonsai trees is not as hard as one may think. Some bonsai trees are easier to care for than others. The Ficus bonsai is by far the easiest to care for because of it is low maintenance and resistant against most pests. The ficus’s leaves are poisonous for pets and should be kept away from all pets.
About The Ficus Bonsai
The ficus bonsai are mulberry plants, with 800 to 2000 different species. They are tropical, which means they are best grown indoors. The most popular species of Ficus is the Ficus Retusa, which has dark green, oval leaves and an s-curved trunk. Another is the Ficus Ginseng, which also has dark green, oval leaves and a thick trunk.
Ficus trees in the wild can sometimes grow over 1000 feet tall. All figs have milky sap that leaks from their wounds. Some can produce flowers, though some have hidden flowers in which fruit can grow. Only a specific kind of wasp can pollinate these flowers. The fruit grown can be red, yellow, green, or blue-purple.
The ficus tree is an indoor bonsai that cannot stand frost. This tree can only be placed outside in the summer if temperatures are consistently above 59 degrees Fahrenheit (15 degrees Celsius). Because it is a tropical tree, it needs lots of light, direct or indirect. Placing the tree in front of a South facing window where it can get as much light as possible is favorable. Figs can survive in low or high humidity, they’re not picky, but they thrive better in high humidity.
Just like any other bonsai, the Ficus should never be watered on a routine, but when the soil gets dry. Room temperature tap water will do fine, but it is suggested that you should let the water sit overnight to allow for any chlorine in the tap to evaporate. Because they are not so picky, they can withstand occasional under- or over-watering, but try not to too often.
Because the Ficus is tropical, it has no dormancy period in the winter. As such, the tree can be fertilized relatively consistently throughout the year. In the summer, you can fertilize every week or two, and every two to four weeks in the winter if the growth is consistent.
Thin and medium-strong branches are the easiest to wire because of their flexibility. However, the wires cut into bark very quickly and should be checked on regularly. When wiring strong branches, guy-wires should be used as they can stand wiring for a longer period.
After 6-8 leaves have grown on a branch, 2 should be pruned. The trunk should be left alone for a year or two if a thick trunk is desired. And if small leaves are wanted, pruning can be used to do so.
Every one to two years this tree should be repotted.
For the highest success possible, cuttings should be planted in mid-summer, but they can be planted any time. Air layering can be done in spring for best results.
Speical Training Techniques
Plant parts can be fused together by just touching each other with some pressure. Roots, branches, and trunks alike can be fused together. This technique can be used to fuse a bunch of little plants to make one big healthy plant.
Pests and Diseases
As mentioned before, the ficus is resistant against pests. In the winter, however, problems can still arise. Low light and dry air can cause the tree’s leaves to fall off. During these conditions, the tree can become infested with spider mites or scale. Using any insecticide sticks or sprays will get rid of the bugs, but the damage to the plant must also be taken care of. Artifical lighting can be used 12 to 14 hours a day as well as misting the leaves frequently will help significantly.
While most all bonsai tree’s are easy to care for, the Ficus bonsai are the best choice for beginners. Watering should be done when needed, which can be every few days depending on your plant, but never on a routine. Fertilizing should be done every few weeks. Pruning should be done regularly to ensure your plant is healthy, and wiring can be done to make your tree as appealing as you want it to be. Repotting should be done every few years or so, propagation should be done in the summer for best results, and trees can be fused together very easily. These trees are extremely resistant to pests unless they are damaged in the winter. Ficus bonsai are the best option for beginners and the easiest to take care of.