Ficus Bengali (Fícus benghalénsis) is a tree from the mulberry family. This plant grows in Bangladesh, as well as in India and Sri Lanka. It can occupy an area of several hectares, and the diameter of the crown of a ficus can exceed five hundred meters.
Description of Bengal Ficus
The ficus bengal plant is characterized by a special life form, which is called "banyan". The beginning of the banyan formation stage is due to the formation of powerful, horizontally located branches of the aerial root system. These roots are numerous, do not have hairs. Their growth is very slow. A significant part of the root system dries out after a certain period of time and does not reach the ground.
A small part of aerial roots still touches the soil and gets the opportunity to root. Then the aboveground part passes the stage of intense thickening and turning into trunks. The fruits formed on the plant serve as food for birds and mammals, which become the main assistants in the distribution of seeds and further propagation of the plant.
Like a significant part of the varieties of ficus from the mulberry family, Bengal ficus can be classified as the most unpretentious plant in indoor floriculture.
Ficus bengal is characterized by high growth intensity. With standard care, the plant can add in growth from fifty centimeters to one meter annually. To restrain growth, it is necessary to cultivate ficus in a tight container or perform pruning of roots at the stage of transplantation.
Ficus Bengali: care features
Bengal ficus is not very demanding on lighting parameters. The plant feels good in the conditions of spacious and fairly bright rooms. Allowed cultivation using artificial lighting. The uniform and proper development of the crown of this ficus requires regular rotation of the flower pot with the plant around its axis. This procedure allows all sides of the ficus to get an equal amount of light.
The plant requires compliance with moderate temperature indicators, which can range from 18 to 26 degrees above zero. Ficus Bengali is recommended to be protected from drafts and lowering the temperature of less than 17 degrees of heat.
The plant is quite voluminous and has some requirements for humidity in the room. Regularly remove dust with a wet sponge from the foliage of the plant. In addition, central heating batteries, as well as other heating devices in the room, which make the air too dry, can have a negative effect on ficus.
Watering and feeding
Watering should be regular and plentiful all year round, due to the lack of a winter dormant phase in the plant. Fertilizer under Ficus Bengali should be used with great care. It is advisable to feed twice a month with half doses of ready-made complex fertilizers for universal use.
A young plant of this type of ficus requires annual transplantation into a larger flower pot with a standard soil mixture for all types of ficus. Adult plants are quite problematic to transplant. It is recommended that the topsoil be replaced with fresh soil as necessary.
It is advisable to prune Bengal ficus in the warm season. As a rule, experienced flower growers perform sanitary and shaping pruning in the spring. All weak and dried shoots should be removed. This kind of ficus responds well to forming pruning, due to the implementation of which the plant acquires a more magnificent and compact crown.
You may also be interested in an article in which we talk about the problems encountered when growing ficuses.
Diseases and Pests
Pests infect Bengal ficus quite rarely. One can observe the appearance of such parasites on the plant that are characteristic of most ficuses, such as thrips, scale insects, and spider mites. Small-sized plants should be freed from pests by a stream of warm water from a shower head. Large plants with a massive crown require treatment with special insecticides.
Improper care, accompanied by violations of microclimatic conditions and the regime of watering and top dressing, can cause wilting, shredding or falling of leaves, as well as slowing the growth or stretching of the stem of the plant. These problems are addressed by reviewing sensitive care activities.
Ficus: indoor plant
Ficus Bengal is quite simple to grow at home. It is unpretentious and looks very original. Ficus will not cause big problems even for beginner growers and will be a wonderful decoration for both the living room and the office for many years.