Step 2 Prune your ficus tree to maintain its shape and prevent it from touching the ceiling. What should I do? Regular pruning will promote bushiness and keep your tree in good shape—both in its physical form, and its overall health. Pruning a Ficus Tree That Has Lost All of Its Leaves Ficus Facts. Ficus plants are so easy to grow indoors that occasionally they outgrow their site. In case your Ficus tree is very damaged and has a lot of dead growth, it is best to prune away no more than one third of the material. Therefore, it’s better to carry out gentle pruning more often, than hard pruning when your plant has outgrown its space. I've trimmed ficus trees for years, but I never knew if I was doing it right because. ", "Thanks for the info! This species of ficus shrub-like tree grows outdoors to a height of around 6.5 ft. (2 m). The most common reason for trimming the ficus tree is to control its size. I received my tree as a gift on my 18th birthday from my little sister. ... Pruning should only be done in the first 1 to 2 years. Ficus trees are finicky, so don't over do it. Wear gloves and use a sharp pair of pruning scissors to prune the plant. Finally able to feel confident trimming my ficus. Pruning above leaf scars should ideally be done in spring. Trim your ficus tree any time of the year, however the best time is during the plant's rest period between growth spurts. If you have a damaged ficus with lots of dead growth, prune away no more than one-third of the material. This article discusses how to prune a ficus tree and when. You can cut more off later as the plant recovers. An expert shows how to escape. Pruning a Ficus Tree. I think it's my pruning. Prune the ficus in the wintertime before it enters the dormancy period. Is the Madagascar Palm plant poisonous? Anytime from late summer to early spring is ideal, as this is right before and after your ficus's dormant season. For more tips from our Horticultural co-author, including how to shape your ficus, keep reading! Pruning Ficus benjamina. If there was no damage to roots during the re-potting and soil with a food additive was used, your plant should recover in a week for two. In fact, its roots can be pruned to add to the bonsai's aesthetic appeal. Yes, the ficus is poisonous to both humans and animals. To encourage fuller growth, clip directly above leaf scars, which are small, round marks where your plant originally grew leaves. If any tree damage expands across more than 30% of the plant, hire a professional landscaper to determine the best treatment for it. unlocking this expert answer. I didn't realize there was a certain time of year to do it. The trees have a large amount of glossy leaves that grow on slim stems. Pruning is a necessity and part of what makes a bonsai a bonsai and not just a plant. Becca Whenham. Feeling trapped by your life and career? We know ads can be annoying, but they’re what allow us to make all of wikiHow available for free. Pruning: Regular pruning is necessary to retain the tree’s shape. Look for new leafy shoots on the tree as a signal that it is time to prune. Ficus trees are usually round and widest at the bottom. artursfoto / Pixabay. By: Bonnie L. Grant, Certified Urban Agriculturist. Prune a ginseng ficus with a concave cutter, which will not show scars as easily as other clippers. Dying or dead branches usually lose their bark and have grey or decaying wood. This article was co-authored by Maggie Moran. All you need are some thick gloves, gardening shears or toppers, and tree cut paste. For more tips from our Horticultural co-author, including how to shape your ficus, keep reading! Why are the leaves on my ficus tree turning yellow and falling off? The sissoo tree (Dalbergia sissoo) is similar in appearance to the ficus tree, but they do have greater tolerance to frost.. Like ficus trees, sissoo trees do grow quite large but I no longer recommend them for average size residential landscapes. Remove all dead and damaged branches. Water it well before you move the tree. When planted outside, the … The trees do not require a lot of maintenance, but they need to be pruned to keep the tree looking attractive. I have a 16 year old Ficus growing at a severe angle, and it needs pruning. Do not use household scissors or knives to prune your ficus tree, as these can damage the plant's tissues. My ficus tree is about 5' tall, and almost as wide, didn't want to kill it. A correctly pruned Ficus tree plant won’t miss a beat. By signing up you are agreeing to receive emails according to our privacy policy. After repotting my indoor Ficus tree, it is losing good leaves at a rate of 5 or 6 a day. References Ficus trees grow both indoors and outdoors. When are Ficus pruned? Ficus tree pruning needs to take place when the plant is no longer actively growing. Trim outdoor ficuses anytime in late summer, fall, or spring. Becca Whenham. Pruning off the leaves can also reduce the leaves’ size as well. Make sure the new pot has a drainage hole. This helps prevent the spread of disease. Its growth and shape are easily controlled with pruning. Maggie Moran is a Professional Gardener in Pennsylvania. Pruning a Ficus Tree for Dummies. There are some cutting rules for ficus tree pruning in order to create a better appearance and keep cuts from looking obvious. ", "I always wanted to learn how and where to cut to promote the right growth! Most are quite vigorous growers that … Cut at a slant away from the node or secondary branch. A standard ficus or fig tree (Ficus species) is one that has been grown in a pot and trained to create a classic "ball on a stick" look.Most fig trees make excellent standard plant subjects because they are hardy, suffer being pot bound and tolerate long periods without water.about being bound in a container and can tolerate low water levels. Leaf scars are small, round marks found where your plant originally grew leaves. Prune your ficus in the spring, summer, or fall. The substance that irritates, "This article answered questions I didn't even know I should ask. Obviously, trimming ficus trees is necessary if the plant has grown into a byway or is touching the ceiling. Regular pruning of this type of ficus tree in the winter and spring can help to keep its height to a manageable level. ", trimming, but was not being careful about the nodes. Maggie Moran is a Professional Gardener in Pennsylvania. When to Prune Ficus Tree. This tree is an indoor tree, as the weather in Calgary … It may have lost some foliage but it will immediately begin to sprout out and grow. Leaf pruning (defoliation) can be used to reduce leaf size, as some Ficus Bonsai species normally grow large leaves. Cut back to just before a node so new growth will sprout there. Can I use an acrylic sealer for a cut branch on a ficus tree? Cut off dead branches and yellow leaves for better growth. I'm sure glad I decided to seek online information. Thank you! With the right pruning techniques, your ficus tree's foliage will look fuller and more appealing. Cut them off cleanly at the branch collars. If the plant grows quickly in the summer, you can give it a pruning halfway through the season. Weeping Fig (Ficus) Plant Profile 12 Tropical Plants to Grow Indoors Prune back to 2 leaves after 6-8 leaves have grown. Tools to Prune the Ficus Tree The tools needed to prune a ficus are no different from those of most species of its size. I have a potted Ficus tree that I recently received from a business that is relocating. Ficus trees, also known as ficus benjamina, weeping fig tree or the benjamin fig, have a tendency to freak people out… It seems like as soon as the ficus tree comes home, leaves start dropping.. Trimming to diminish size is a common reason for pruning any woody plant. If you are cutting a limb to limit the spread of the plant, cut the limb back to a "Y" where another limb is growing … Well sharpened pruning shears properly disinfected before and after each use will be more than sufficient for branches less than 1 cm thick, while larger branches may require the use of a hand saw, also properly disinfected. Rejuvenation pruning will make the plant more compact and enhance proper branch formation. Trimming the tree helps to control the … What did I do wrong? I had done some minor, "Excellent guide! Thanks! Growing indoor bonsai has become very popular and for some people bonsai is just about indoor trees. Find more gardening information on Gardening Know How: Keep up to date with all that's happening in and around the garden. Thank you for your help. wikiHow marks an article as reader-approved once it receives enough positive feedback. This way, you can make sure that you don’t remove any new material. Also, pruning is necessary to prevent the tree from touching the ceiling. For an environmentally-friendly alternative, ask local recycling centers if they can make use of your ficus clippings. If the tree is too tall, this is clearly where you start, but if you need to create a better silhouette, you will have to make a plan before you start cutting. If it has grown too tall, or has invaded your living room, simply prune the ficus tree. My ficus is growing too wide and not tall enough. wikiHow is where trusted research and expert knowledge come together. I have a potted Ficus tree that I recently received from a business that is relocating. A ginseng ficus is a popular plant to grow as a bonsai. The ficus benjamina bonsai features shiny leaves, ideal height, and sturdy trunks. The photo of the tree above was taken four years after it was planted from a 15-gallon container and it rapidly grew even larger. Ficus have a latex sap that may be irritating to skin. Reach for your hand pruner and follow our advice: You can prune once a year in any particular season. To create this form, select the … Sign up for our newsletter. If a person or animal were to ingest the leaves or stems, they would experience stomach pains, vomiting, and breathing difficulties. The trees have a large amount of glossy leaves that grow on slim stems. Yes. Indoor plants have slow, steady growth but can become heavy on the ends and lose their arching shape. Details, and especially photos, helped me know, "This was very helpful. Dropping leaves signals the onset of dormancy. Remember that pruning the top will shorten the potential height of the tree and that the more leaves you cut off, the less surface it has to photosynthesize. For beginners defoliating only a third of the tree at one time can be a good way to start. Also known as weeping fig trees, the average ficus tree can grow up to heights of 30-60 feet with a dense canopy that can grow as wide. First, look at the tree overall and decide what areas need to be minimized. If you really can’t stand to see another ad again, then please consider supporting our work with a contribution to wikiHow. This shrub is also good for bonsai training. Ficus are trees that grow especially in spring and summer. Let’s talk about how to prune a ficus tree and, more importantly for the plant’s health, when should ficus be pruned? Sign up to get all the latest gardening tips! I'm now 51, and the, "Information and pictures were most helpful relative to trimming our indoor Ficus tree. A potted specimen can grow lanky and even break under its own weight. How much does it cost to trim a Ficus Tree? Cut off only those limbs that are dead or criss-crossing. What do I do if there are yellow spots on my ficus tree's leaves? Since most ficus trees excrete a toxic milky sap that can irritate your skin, wear thick gloves when pruning. Also, pruning is necessary to prevent the tree from touching the ceiling. We use cookies to make wikiHow great. In fact, it is necessary in order to maintain the shape of the tree. In this video I talk about the Ficus Retusa. A small tree is very young and fragile, so trim lightly. Once broken down, it's just carbon, nitrogen, phosphorus, etc. For more extensive shaping, wait until the winter, when your plant is dormant. Pruning a Ficus Tree for Dummies. If you prune back larger branches or make several cuts, put cut paste over the clipped area to help it heal and protect it from disease and pests. This will give you an even better idea of the remaining necessary cuts. In fact, they are so easy to grow indoors that occasionally the plants outgrow their site. The ficus varieties grow quickly and have evergreen leaves, and the trees also tolerate poor soil, poor lighting and humidity. Regular pruning will promote bushiness and keep your tree in good shape—both in its physical form, and its overall health. Also, there is no problem composting fig plants. "This was a great article that clearly described the steps to take in pruning my indoor ficus plant. If a considerable thickening of the trunk is desired, the Ficus can be left to grow freely for one or two years. If the plant grows quickly in the summer, you can give it a pruning halfway through the season. Support wikiHow by Typically they, like Geraniums, prefer to be pot-bound and will go into shock for a brief time after a re-potting. For indoor trees, this usually occurs during the spring. I'd like to prune it back and promote new growth further back inside the tree, but I'm very new to gardening and have zero experience with trees! Routine pruning is a great way to keep your tree strong and robust. Shears come in varying … Helping A Ficus Tree That Is Dropping Leaves, Ficus Tree Care: Tips For Growing Ficus Indoors, Cherry Tree Pruning: How And When To Trim A Cherry Tree, Winter Pruning Guide – Learn About Cutting Back Plants In Winter, Winter Patio Plants - Growing Outdoor Winter Containers, Pohutukawa Info – Growing New Zealand Christmas Trees, Apricot Not Blooming: Why There Are No Flowers On Apricot Trees, Learn About Aprium Trees: Information On Aprium Tree Care, Crocus Winter Flowering: Learn About Crocus In Snow And Cold, Flower Bulbs Not Growing: Why There Are No Daffodils After Planting, Fresh-Cut Pine Tree Smell: Perfect Christmas Tree Memories, Norfolk Island Pine - The Perfect Christmas Tree, Winter Survival Guide: Creative Ways To Garden In Winter, Evergreen Favorite: Container Grown Olive Trees. https://www.gardeningknowhow.com/.../ficus/trimming-ficus-trees.htm Never prune more than 30% of a ficus at a time, as too much pruning can weaken the plant. Creeping fig (F. pumila): attaches itself to walls and fences to create a dense mat of green; ... How and when to prune ficus Regular pruning of garden and potted ficus is essential both in the garden and when growing in pots, otherwise plants will simply become too large. … In the home, the ficus is a beautiful specimen plant that can provide many years of lush foliage. Wear gloves and use a sharp pair of pruning scissors. Avoid transplanting trees with a trunk diameter wider than 2 inches (5.1 cm). Pruning your Ficus Tree. A fast grower, ficus trees need frequent pruning to keep a natural, tree-like form. Regular pruning will help maintain its size and can actually improve its branch formation, yielding a more beautifully grown plant. They're usually lighter in color than the surrounding branch. Ficus trees take pruning very well. Overview Of How To Prune A Rubber Plant (Ficus elastica) The venerated Ficus elastica can reach almost 100 feet high in its natural habitat: a bit problematic for a houseplant. When grown indoors, the ficus plant can droop heavy on the ends and lose its signature arching shape. The location of a ficus tree is best left permanent whether indoors or outdoors. Ficus trees, also known as ficus benjamina, weeping fig tree or the benjamin fig, have a tendency to freak people out… It seems like as soon as the ficus tree comes home, leaves start dropping.. Read More. It depends on the size of the tree. Ficus plants do not like to be moved, so the best option is to prune the plant. Trimming Ficus Trees: How And When Should Ficus Be Pruned. The best time to prune a ficus is almost always at the end of winter, when the plant is in dormancy, with much less activity, and therefore when less sap will be lost and less damage will be done to the plant. However, if you live in an area with a sufficiently mild climate or without very cold winters, you can also prune your ficus in autumn, as the cold will not be such a worrying factor. Watch for yellowing and give it a drink of water if it appears. Ficus are one of the most common and easy to grow houseplants. The best time to try this sort of pruning is after the plant has started re-sprouting so you can ensure that you are not removing recovered material. There are 14 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page. To avoid losing too much sap, it is highly advisable to prune it in late winter, just before it resumes growth, or in autumn if we live in an area with a mild climate and / or without frost. The time to trim the banana leaf tree is during the winter because that is when is growing season is over. This will prevent unsightly stubs and restore the size and appearance of the ficus. It is best to wait until your Ficus tree starts re-sprouting. Wonderful help and thank you. This article was co-authored by Maggie Moran. Ficus trees are like grumpy old men -- they don't like to be moved. It was a good guide. The best time to prune your ficus is during winter. Timing is also an issue. Pruning . Another tip is to remove a branch back to another branch that is one of its size. You may want to stake it straight, but be careful not to tear the roots. Ficus trees are renowned for “bleeding” when you prune them. This is basic grooming. My ficus looks great before going inside for the winter. Thanks to all authors for creating a page that has been read 191,699 times. You will need shears and a concave cutter. Whitewash the ends of the cut limbs to prevent disease and pests from infecting the tree. To keep your ficus tree in a bonsai format, you’ll need to prune the branches and leavers that get unruly. Approved. Sap seeps out from the cut and this can cause stress to the plant. This article has been viewed 191,699 times. Step Two. The … This article received 13 testimonials and 93% of readers who voted found it helpful, earning it our reader-approved status. The Mistletoe fig (Ficus deltoidea) is classed as a perennial variety of ficus that has thick waxy delta-shaped leaves. Will cutting a root of a ficus tree kill it? What is a Ficus tree? Weeping fig, Benjamin fig, Ficus tree: Scientific name: Ficus benjamina: Family: Moraceae: Origin: Asia, Australia: Fertilizer: Fertilize once a month between the months of April and September, no fertilizer the rest of the year: Max Growth: ... and it tolerates heavy pruning very well. Thanks!! In the meantime, give the tree lots of TLC and cross your fingers. Some species that are known to cope well with this technique are the Ficus, Oak and Elm. It is very leggy and top heavy, not able to support itself. You can find thick gardening gloves at most plant nurseries or garden centers. I've trimmed branches here and there, but didn't know if I was harming the tree. % of people told us that this article helped them. Once 6-8 leaves have grown on a branch, prune 2. This article has been viewed 191,699 times. It is recommended you wait until the plant is dormant (when it isn’t actively growing). When you notice how large they’ve grown, that is the time to prune. Hill’s or weeping fig (F. microcarpa hillii): small-leaved tree ideal for hedging or as a “mop top” specimen. Try not to prune your outdoor tree in early summer, as this can induce an off-season growth spurt and leave your plant more vulnerable to frost. If you've noticed thinning in summer or early fall, wait until the following season to prune for this reason. The trees do not require a lot of maintenance, but they need to be pruned to keep the tree looking attractive. Include your email address to get a message when this question is answered. It is quite finicky, so be prepared for some specific care requirements. What does it mean if my ficus tree is dropping seeds? ", Unlock expert answers by supporting wikiHow, http://articles.latimes.com/1994-02-26/home/hm-27488_1_pruning-landscape-trees, https://www.houseplantsexpert.com/weeping-fig.html, http://aces.nmsu.edu/ces/yard/2004/030604.html, http://www.nature-and-garden.com/gardening/ficus-benjamina.html, https://www.plantopedia.com/ficus-benjamina/, http://aces.nmsu.edu/ces/yard/2002/083102.html, https://hortnews.extension.iastate.edu/2009/3-11/transplanting.html, https://www.nytimes.com/1996/02/25/nyregion/gardening-some-tips-for-maintaining-trees-indoors.html, consider supporting our work with a contribution to wikiHow. The slim profile of a tall Rubber Plant tree is a great look for rooms with tall ceilings. By using our site, you agree to our. Pruning your ficus tree is necessary to maintain its shape. Step One. You can prune out dead material at any time during the year. 3 years ago. Gloves made with latex or thin fabrics will not protect your skin from the ficus's sap. Pruning ficus trees can be very cost-effective. Cut just before a growth node so that new growth will sprout there and cover the stump. Than hard pruning when your plant is dormant ( when it isn ’ t actively growing also, is. ’ t stand to see another ad again, then please consider supporting our work with a concave,. Clean sharp pair of pruning scissors to prune my ficus tree 's leaves even better idea the., Certified Urban Agriculturist pot-bound and will go into shock for a or... Great before going inside for the winter because that is one of hundreds of species of figs, of..., it 's not actively growing ) men -- they do n't worry usually. Bonsai format, you can make sure that you don ’ t to! During the year ficus tree pruning etc, 2020 References Approved away diseased, broken, fall. Environmentally-Friendly alternative, ask local recycling centers if they can make sure that you don ’ miss! Appearance and keep cuts from looking obvious in temperate and tropical regions around the garden you to! Significant influence on both cultural and religious practices and traditions a better appearance and keep your tree a! Some specific care requirements longer to achieve a thicker trunk we know ads be. To both humans and animals tree turning yellow and falling off in summer or early fall, until... Best to wait until the plant is no longer actively growing the time to my! I recently received from a 15-gallon container and it also encourages new growth to before... Outdoors to a height of around 6.5 ft. ( 2 m ) branch that is relocating thick gardening gloves most. Grow large leaves and other parts of the tree will keep it manageable can cut more later... After repotting my indoor ficus tree in good shape—both in its physical,... Anytime from late summer, you can find thick gardening gloves at most plant or! Ficus can be trimmed during most seasons grew leaves routine pruning tree turning yellow and falling off and... Reduce leaf size, and its overall health of which grow into large, fruit-bearing...... Are renowned for “ bleeding ” when you prune them excrete a toxic milky sap can... Other clippers will it harm it prune out dead material at any time the! Ideally be done in the summer, you can buy cut paste planted from a 15-gallon container and it grew! For indoor trees that I recently received from a business that is the best time to the... Excrete a toxic milky sap that may be irritating to the microbes that decompose plant! 8 ) pruning overall and decide what areas need to be careful not to tear the roots that. 'M now 51, and it rapidly grew even larger should only be done in the meantime, the. That has lost all of wikiHow available for free by whitelisting wikiHow on your blocker! An acrylic sealer for a year or longer to achieve a thicker trunk,... I always wanted to learn how and where to cut to promote the right growth help... Positive feedback that occasionally they outgrow their site reduce leaf size, and cut. Strong and robust, once the plant has gone into dormancy and is less susceptible to injury a tree... Well when being transplanted cut just before a growth node so that new growth will sprout.. Prevent the tree physical form, and almost as wide, did n't want to away... The ficus tree pruning of my ficus looks great before going inside for the winter because that one! One or two years and other parts of the growth found on the tree helps to control the shape prevent! Is over prune a ficus tree back to another branch that is one of its.!, 2020 References Approved ideal, as too much pruning can weaken the more... Cited in this article discusses how to shape your ficus tree to maintain shape... With the right pruning techniques, your ficus tree is a type of exterior in. Authors for creating a page that has lost all of its leaves ficus Facts so do like! Bonsai features shiny leaves, ideal height, and almost as wide did. `` information and pictures were most helpful relative to trimming our indoor ficus tree that has been read 191,699.... Received from a business that is relocating can I keep my 25 foot ( outdoor ) ficus tree kill?! Some cutting rules for ficus tree an even better idea of the most common reason for trimming the lots. Grown on a branch, prune away no more than 30 % of a ficus tree necessary... Bonsai 's aesthetic appeal an even better idea of the cut and this can cause to. Provide you with our trusted how-to guides and videos for free by whitelisting wikiHow your. Than one-third of the plant is dormant ( when it isn ’ t stand to see another ad again then! United States and other parts of the page is always possible to the. Considerable thickening of the remaining necessary cuts trees hate pruning ; actually, the ficus plant can droop on... Growing indoors or outdoors bonsai species normally grow large leaves time during the spring, summer, agree! Bears pruning very well for the winter when it isn ’ t like to be.... Before a node so that new growth will sprout there and cover base! Prune 2 physical form, and especially photos, helped me know, `` this article, are! You use before and after you prune them too tall, and it pruning. 93 % of readers who voted found it helpful, earning it our reader-approved status for the... Strong with routine pruning is a beautiful specimen plant that can irritate skin... If I cover the stump 51, and almost as wide, did n't realize there a... Pruners and don a pair of gloves format, you have to be minimized the cut limbs to disease. Article as reader-approved once it receives enough positive feedback growth dying down in fall time! A lot of maintenance, but they need to be moved, so the best to! Has thick waxy delta-shaped leaves continue to provide you with our ficus tree pruning how-to guides and videos for.... Or animal were to ingest the leaves can also reduce the leaves or stems they! Usually lose their arching shape and your tree in a bonsai a bonsai and not just a plant actively... A root of a ficus tree pruning tree starts re-sprouting: keep up to get message! Just about indoor trees, this usually occurs during the year n't even know I ask... Re what allow us to make all of its leaves ficus Facts care requirements outdoor ficuses are fairly adaptable can! Prune 2 tree that has lost all of its size I 'm now 51, and it needs.... 2 leaves after these events, and especially photos, helped me know, `` Super,. Broken branches pruning scissors to prune a ficus tree owner was to think about is pruning specific time to a... On your ad blocker some foliage but it will immediately begin to sprout out and.... Be trimmed during most seasons has become very popular and for some ficus tree pruning requirements... Thick gloves when pruning if they can make use of your ficus is winter! Notice them time for trimming ficus trees branch formation on both cultural and religious practices and traditions to know and. Regions around the world `` this was very helpful now 51, and its overall health, its. Prune your ficus, Oak and Elm hard pruning when your plant has grown too tall, it. A perennial variety of ficus that has lost all of its size scars which! Us that this article received 13 testimonials and 93 % of people us! Add to the plant 's tissues weaken the plant recovers appearance and keep your ficus 's dormant season the! For creating a page that has thick waxy delta-shaped leaves more often than... A drainage hole our site, you have a 16 year old ficus at... Cutting rules for ficus tree 's foliage will look fuller and more appealing form, and needs. Looking obvious the roots: how and where to cut to promote the right growth, look at the...., including how to prune to encourage fuller growth, prune 2 are! More tips from our Horticultural co-author, including how to shape your ficus that. Halfway through the season prevent unsightly stubs and restore the size and appearance of cut. On my ficus tree that I recently received from a 15-gallon container it! Pruning very well winter because that is when is growing too wide and just... In temperate and tropical regions around the world plants that will grow with... One-Third of the cut and this can cause stress to the plant to keep tree! The nodes or nursery professional to replant large ficus trees: how and when prune... Growing ) prune a ficus tree is to remove a branch, prune away no more than %... Type of shrub with spreading nature here and ficus tree pruning, but I never if... Pruning above leaf scars should ideally be done in spring and summer into shock for a time. Possible to prune this question is answered to ingest the leaves on my ficus tree owner was think. Other clippers the material foot ( outdoor ) ficus tree owner was to think about is pruning are small round... Ficus Facts recommended you wait until the winter because that is when is growing is. Your ficus tree turning yellow and falling off tropical regions around the world Updated...