For many beginners, growing bonsai trees seems challenging. If you think so, it is time to dive into the Ficus microcarpa.
Not only is it striking but also forgiving. Moreover, this complete guide will help you unearth the Ficus microcarpa ginseng care.
Typically, you can find Ficus ginseng plants in house furniture stores. They surely make an incredible gift for fellow gardeners too.
If you are a hobbyist, growing them is a smart move. So, let’s find out all things Ficus microcarpa here!
Basic Ficus Microcarpa Ginseng Care
Despite its name, Ficus microcarpa doesn’t make an exotic tea. Thus, the Chinese term ‘ginseng’ itself stands for roots.
As the name implies, it boasts thick aerial roots that appear like a human’s pair of legs. Luckily, Ficus microcarpa ginseng care is minimal.
In their native habitat, people grow Ficus microcarpa ginseng plants effortlessly in warm and humid environments.
Unlike fragile bonsai plants, it needs simple care.
Further, when it comes to Ficus microcarpa ginseng care, you must find an ideal place for it. This gorgeous bonsai plant thrives in warm climates.
Place the Ficus microcarpa somewhere with temperatures hovering around 15-25 degrees Celcius or 60-75 degrees Fahrenheit year-round.
Drafts can cause the leaves to fall off since they suck moisture from the Ficus microcarpa plant’s foliage.
Therefore, do not place the plant in hallways or corridors.
Consider spraying the Ficus microcarpa with water, especially during the colder months. After that, shade the plant from the glaring sun.
When you turn your heating system on, place your Ficus microcarpa away from the radiators.
Ficus ginseng is fond of indirect yet luminous light. This plant should get plenty of indirect light, especially during hotter hours.
Hence, keep it out of a spot with bright sunlight.
This plant loves bright, diffused light. However, it needs protection against the scorching sun rays in summer and spring.
The overly bright light will make the foliage burn out. You can even grow this impressive plant in artificial light.
Watering Ficus Microcarpa ‘Ginseng’
People also know Ficus microcarpa as a Chinese banyan tree or pot-bellied ficus. Additionally, it hails from the Oceania islands and Southern China.
If you grow Ficus microcarpa in proper moisture conditions, it can produce attractive aerial roots. Then, they will bring the plant pot composition to the next level.
This plant does well in humid and warm surroundings. Due to this fact, you must keep the soil perfectly moist throughout the summertime.
For a more humid condition, place the Ficus microcarpa on a tray. Then, fill it with some water and pebbles.
However, its roots should not sit in water.
Moreover, water the Ficus microcarpa plant once every 3-4 days or ten days. It depends on the air’s dryness.
You should water the plant moderately. Therefore, its foliage will not fall off and turn yellow. Keep checking the drainage.
Besides, feel free to give the potting soil some cactus soil mix.
During the wintertime, Ficus microcarpa requires less water because the growth slows. Just water the plant twice a month.
To prevent thermal shock, avoid watering Ficus microcarpa with cold water.
First, add some tap water to a jug. After that, put it near the pot for 2-3 hours. The cap should open too.
Apart from raising the temperature, it lets chlorine out.
Speaking of Ficus ginseng propagation, you can start with upper cuttings about 4 inches or 10 cm in spring.
Make sure it features six healthy leaves or more. Place the Ficus ginseng cuttings in a greenhouse.
Use a combination of perlite and peat. Then, set the temperature to 25 degrees Celcius or 77 degrees Fahrenheit.
You can pre-treat them with heteroauxin, too.
Set the cuttings for germination in indirect light conditions. Four weeks after, till the stalk. Also, check the roots.
If they grow, remove all the leaves except a pair of the upper ones.
After 2 weeks, you can apply diluted fertilizer to the plant. Then, 90 days after rooting, place it in a pot with a 10 cm diameter.
In addition to growing Ficus microcarpa plants from cuttings, you can propagate them by seeds, root offspring, and layers.
Ficus Ginseng Fertilizer
Apart from requiring proper moisture, Ficus microcarpa also needs liquid fertilizer. During the spring and fall months, you have to give fertilizer to the plant every 14 days.
When fertilizing the Ficus ginseng plants, you should alternate between mineral and organic fertilizers.
The discussion about Ficus microcarpa ginseng care is not complete without knowing its growth rate.
When we are talking about the ficus ginseng growth rate, it is not very tall. Indoors, this plant can only attain a height of 0.4-1 meter or 16-40 inches.
However, the plant grows up to 25 meters or 82 feet in the wild.
Ficus microcarpa produces bulky and juicy-looking roots. They begin forming underground, however.
Furthermore, it takes this Ficus ginseng plant 1 or 2 years to have roots with a width of 3-5 cm or 1-2 inches.
At this stage, it may have developed a stem an inch wide and several feet high.
When it comes to the Ficus microcarpa ginseng care, provide this variety with an indoor plant soil mix.
Although the plant is not overly picky, it prefers fertile, well-drained, neutral, or slightly acidic soil.
Proper drainage is also crucial. If the upper layer is sand, the lower one must be claydite.
Repotting Ficus microcarpa
Ficus microcarpa ginseng care is uncomplicated. However, repotting the plant is necessary, every 1 to 3 years.
In addition, combine it with pruning and defoliating for a bodacious bonsai.
Repotting lets you replenish the plant with nutrients. Additionally, it enables you to check the condition of the potting mix.
When repotting Ficus microcarpa, you must eliminate roots that grow through drainage holes. This keeps the water from collecting around them.
The drainage layer should consist of gravel or clay pebbles. Besides, you need to add sand to the soil mix.
Pruning Ficus microcarpa
Talking about Ficus microcarpa ginseng care, pruning is vital. The plant can get huge in the wild. However, it must remain a lovely bonsai indoors.
Ficus microcarpa develops new sprigs straight from the trunk’s bark. Thus, it prevents you from making mistakes when pruning.
Here are two ways to keep the Ficus ginseng under control.
- Seasonal Pruning
You only have to check on the Ficus microcarpa once or twice a year. It is heavier than the constant pruning as well.
Spring is the right time for seasonal pruning. Just prune the branches by a 1/3 or ½. Feel free to remove unattractive shoots under the graft joint.
This type of pruning is more suitable for bonsai Ficus microcarpa plants featuring wires. When pruning, consider defoliating the tree.
No worries since new foliage will re-emerge.
- Constant Pruning
Constant pruning requires you to check on the plant frequently. You also need to get rid of displeasing twigs.
When you see ten new leaves, prune the sprigs. After that, remove 4-6 leaves. This will trigger new foliage and twigs.
You must keep the Ficus microcarpa covered all around. In the process, rotate the plant. Do not prune it if it does not produce new foliage.
Ficus Ginseng Benefits
Now that you have read up on Ficus microcarpa ginseng care, you should dive into its benefits. This plant is a type of fig tree that possesses teeny-weeny fig-like fruits.
The cute fruits only appear in ideal conditions. Moreover, they turn black and red. They are inedible for humans, yet birds enjoy feasting on them.
Since Ficus ginseng produces a toxic sap, you should not play apprentice doctors. Below are two benefits of growing it.
Detoxify the Air
Ficus microcarpa plants not only provide oxygen but also capture toxins. They clean the air by acting as indoor air filters.
Ficus ginseng reduces the amounts of chemical pollutants in building materials like ceramic and vinyl.
Thus, you should maintain its foliage year-round.
Bust a Bad Mood
Growing a bonsai plant successfully can create a sense of accomplishment. It is crucial for your mental health.
The plant also improves your mood after going through a stressful day. Moreover, it gives your life a bit of zen.
The Varieties of Ficus microcarpa
There are numerous Ficus ginseng cultivars. Here are some appealing Ficus microcarpa varieties you should know.
Ficus microcarpa ‘Moclame’
This ficus microcarpa variety boasts leaves that grow closely. Additionally, it possesses an eye-catching tree-like stem.
The plant reaches a height of 30-60 cm or 1-2 feet. You can braid or weave the stems easily.
Ficus microcarpa ‘Green Emerald’
This plant is ideal for bonsai tending. Besides, it employs tiny oval leaves with neat points. They are about 3-4 cm or 1 ½ inch long.
Ficus microcarpa ‘Tiger Bark’
It boasts stunning patterns on its bark and aerial roots. Furthermore, it makes a remarkable bonsai plant.
However, the patterns can disappear with age.
Ficus microcarpa ‘Green Island’
The plant comprises small round leaves attaining a width of 2.5-3 cm or 1 inch. This variety is suited to bonsai tending too.
Ficus microcarpa is equal parts fantastic and forgiving. It enables you to forgo complicated follow-up.
The guide on Ficus microcarpa ginseng care above helps you grow the plant with success. Also, it becomes a fun project for any plant lover, hobbyist, or gardener that lasts years.