How to Grow a Ficus Bonsai

Ficus bonsai trees require special care.

Ficus bonsai trees require special care.

A Ficus bonsai tree is a popular choice for the novice bonsai grower. In the world of bonsai trees, Ficus bonsai varieties are relatively easy to care for and can survive the occasional mistake, such as overwatering. It is a very small, slow growing tree and will take several years before it needs to be transplanted into a larger pot. Your Ficus bonsai should be kept indoors year-round in an area where it receives indirect sunlight, and kept at normal room temperatures above 55 degrees F.


    Watering Your Ficus bonsai
  1. Place your finger about 1/2 inch into the soil around your bonsai. This should be checked daily. If the soil feels dry, your bonsai needs water.

  2. Water your Ficus bonsai by placing it in a container filled with enough water to reach the trunk. Most people find it easiest to simply fill a sink with water. Allow the tree to soak for about 10 minutes.

  3. Remove your tree from the water and allow the excess water to drain from the pot.

  4. Use a water bottle and mist the leaves of your Ficus bonsai daily. This is not a substitute for watering, but rather a way of providing necessary humidity around your tree.

    Fertilizing Your Ficus Bonsai
  5. Choose a fertilizer that is specifically for bonsai trees or use a fertilizer made for houseplants at half the recommended strength per the manufacturer’s instructions.

  6. Water your Ficus bonsai tree prior to applying the fertilizer.

  7. Apply the fertilizer per the manufacturer’s instructions if using a type formulated specifically for bonsai trees. If you are using a regular houseplant fertilizer, cut the recommended amount in half and apply as directed.

  8. Repeat the fertilization process once every two weeks.

    Repotting Your Ficus Bonsai
  9. Choose a new pot for your Ficus bonsai that is 2/3 smaller in diameter than the height of the tree, unglazed on the inside and has at least two holes for drainage. Repotting is recommended every two years, but you can transplant your tree sooner if it looks crowded. The best time to move your Ficus bonsai is in the early spring.

  10. Fill the new pot about 1/3 of the way up with a potting soil mix designed for houseplants. Place your Ficus bonsai tree in the pot and add potting soil, covering the roots and almost reaching the brim of the container. Pat lightly with your hand to ensure soil is compacted.

  11. Water your plant thoroughly, and place the plant in a shady location for several weeks.

  12. Return your Ficus bonsai to a location with indirect sunlight and resume normal care.


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