THE AGRONOMIST ANSWERS ON HOW TO GROW AND CARE FOR PLANTS
HOW TO REPOT THE BENJAMINA FICUS
QUESTION OF NOELIA
I found your site on the internet, I'm not a plant expert, I'm a 22 year old girl and I bought a little ficus yesterday .. hoping it gets used to the environment more easily than a bigger one .. I know that there there are many different species and I think, but I'm not sure, it is the ficus Benjamina.
I noticed that it has 1 or 2 cm of small roots out of the pot .. should it be changed? because we are at the end of March but the weather is a bit ambiguous between hot and cold and I don't know if the plant would suffer ... the leaves are deep green .. some lighter and others darker .. only one leaf had a small piece dry and has only two small leaves on the soil .. I noticed that more leaves are sprouting ...
I answer your questions:
- ficus (benjamina?)
- for now I have placed it in the house, I also have a garden, but I would prefer to keep it in the living room
- it is near a window .. it is positioned to the west
- I have had it for 1 day (I know for a short time, but I would like to be safe than sorry .. :))
- the plant seems to be fine, even if I noticed in the leaves some small yellow dots in the upper outer part of the leaves .. maybe it is a characteristic of the plant .. (I am sending you the photo)
- I haven't watered it yet
- I don't see parasites ..
- and I saw some spots on the leaves, some light drops .. on the white I don't know if it was treated with some pesticide ...
- not known insects
I am sending you the photo so you can observe it. Thank you for the nice service you do.
Dearest Noelia, congratulations on the care you want to give to your new friend Ficus but one thing I recommend to you from experience: do not treat it too much.
So, let's go in order. It is a Ficus benjamina and from the photos it seems that he is fine.
Surely it needs to be repotted but not now for two reasons: the first is that you have to give the plant time to adapt to the new environmental situation it has just made a "move" and then moved from the greenhouse, where it was at its most blissful, to the your home which will surely become as much bliss for her only that you have to give her time to adapt; the second reason is that, as you also say, the weather has not yet stabilized even though we are in March. For these reasons I would wait at least a month before repotting.
For repotting, choose a pot that is larger than the current one but without exaggerating and that is terracotta and not plastic as terracotta allows the earth to breathe while plastic does not. Choose a good peaty soil and a leaf soil and mix them in the ratio of 4 parts of peaty soil and one part of leaf soil. Place pieces of earthenware on the bottom of the pot to help drain the water. I recommend that you do the repotting by simply taking the roots with all their bread of earth and putting them in the new pot adding the new earth. Do not cut the roots that you see sprouting from the pot but simply interred. After that you give her some water, don't overdo it, no fertilizer and leave her alone.
Probably the white flecks you see on the leaves of yours Ficus they are really pesticides (you know in nurseries they go with a heavy hand) so don't worry, at least take a soft and damp cloth and clean them.
Those curious spots you see on the leaves I think are due to the fact that it is probably a particular variety as I see them well localized and on all the leaves, so no problem.
I would also recommend that you read the crop card ofFicus so you will get a better idea of how you need to treat it.
When the good weather arrives, around May, you can also put it outside in a place sheltered from direct sunlight and away from drafts, it will be fine.
Always keep one thing in mind: the Ficus it is a plant of tropical origin for which light, heat and good humidity are optimal for it.
That little drop you see on the trunk is an exudate from the plant. Do not worry. The plant is adapting. Only if it should persist and emit several of them can we worry but for now there are no problems. The plant is showing a state of discomfort. But that's normal. Nebulize the hair in order to give it some humidity because the air is certainly too dry but don't overdo it.
Let me know and if you have any doubts write me again.
Dr. Maria Giovanna Davoli
Dear Dr. Maria Giovanna Davoli My name is Noelia, Thanks in the first place for your precious advice regarding my little ficus, it is fine and in these days I will proceed with the repotting ... it seems that the plant is adapting to the new environment.