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Variegated Ficus out of control!

Gardening Reference » Gardening in 2005
by Therian on June 08, 2005 07:25 AM
I have 2 Variegated Ficus plants that are meant to be end table plants. One on each table sort of thing. Both were bought at the same time, both were at least visually to me, about the same size. One has shot waaay past the other in size, and is getting much larger than I'd really like it to be. My question is.. how to best get it back under control and back to a more reasonable end table size? If I prune it, can I then root the pruned limbs and start another plant? Other than it being on the large side.. it and the other variegated ficus seem fine with no other obvious problems. I'd just hate to do something to it and cause it problems if I prune it. I've never actually pruned anything, so I'm a scared baby to do it, but will if it would be better for it, and I might be able to get another plant from it. [Smile]
by Nako on June 08, 2005 04:31 PM
Hi Therian!
Ya you can prune it ^.^ Ficus are pretty tough. They lose their leaves from time to time, but that's cuz they're really sensitive to stuff. temperature change, wind, humidity, etc.

but ya, you can prune it [Smile] if you wana make a new plant off of it, i'm not too sure about how you'd do it, but i've heard several ways to do it ^.^ Like, you can take a small knife, and cut part way into the branch ur cutting off at the point ur cutting it off at. Then you stuff some moss in there, and hold it there with a thing of cling wrap. Then you water it and wait a while. After a while, supposidly it'll grow roots in the moss and you can cut the branch off and root it from there ^.^

or you can cut it off and stick it in soil and hope for the best [Razz]

good luck!!

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by Therian on June 08, 2005 05:39 PM
Hi Nako,

Well ok, now I feel better about maybe hacking it. At least I won't be hacking it to death! (hopefully) [Smile]
I think I might just put the hacked off limbs in rooting hormone and then see what happens. I don't have to get a new plant from them, it just seemed a better use of the limbs than tossing them. Thank you for your reply. [Smile]
by Will Creed on June 09, 2005 04:04 AM
Hi Therian,

Pruning a Ficus is like cutting your hair. It is all about appearances, not life and death or even health! In fact, Ficus trees benefit from regular pruning.

If you want to root the cuttings, you will have to do it by inserting them in a small pot filled with soilless potting mix and then wrapping the pot and cuttings inside a clear plastic bag to preserve the moisture in the soil and in the air around the leaves.

What Phoebe described is called air layering and is more appropriate for large trees with thick stems.
by Therian on June 09, 2005 05:25 AM
Well geez.. I guess I'll go cut my hair.. er.. hmmm.. uh ficus tomorrow! It's good to know I'm not going to kill it, and I will try potting the cuttings to see if I can get them to grow.
Thanks for the advise everyone [Smile]

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