I dont know why i dont know what this is

roelex14

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For some reason i can't remember what the heck this plant is.
found this in our tropical green house at school today
looks like its been here for a long time with little if any care.
it has fastened itself to the floor basically with its roots.

if u do know what this is, how well do they air layer?
 

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irene_b

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It's a ficus....just chop it...
 

Redwood Ryan

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Yeah these are so easy to take care of. Just chop it. The bottom part will back bud after a few weeks.
 

bonhe

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chop and it will reroot?
explain?
Wow, your school has very nice specimen. It will be very nice tree later on. Ficus is one of specimens that are hard to be killed. Bonhe
P/S: its pot looks old.
 

roelex14

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could anyone do a pic of where i should chop it?
that would be great. to give u an idea of how big it, the pot is about 12 inches wide
 

BonsaiMon

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could anyone do a pic of where i should chop it?
that would be great. to give u an idea of how big it, the pot is about 12 inches wide

Hi roelex.. you have a few options with your ficus..
i need a closer look at the leaves to give species???
btw i'm not surprised at what it has done.. only surprised someone didn't whack it earlier.. lol
i've seen some school greenhouses and drooled at the state of art and the ability to keep it at least 70F during the winter.. i have a greenhouse in east virginia near the coast zone 8 and it see temps in the 40'sF quite often.
You can chop it back hard as suggested and it will break with new growth. if you leave it in the current container and don't chop the roots going into the ground it will respond faster and grow more vigorous.
If you have to move it and want to repot it you can do this at the same time. A larger pot will help..
keep it shallow. Ficus like to root across the ground.. not deep into it. In the tropics they can't go deep as easily as horizonal across the ground.
i've included a pic to give you an idea of where you want the canopy to be and pot size.
The ficus does well with the banyon style. This tree has good promise.
You can airlayer and do cuttings.
enjoy :)
 

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cascade

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Ficus Retusa

could anyone do a pic of where i should chop it?
that would be great. to give u an idea of how big it, the pot is about 12 inches wide

Looks like a Ficus retusa to me. I would hard prune the tree back (in spring) to the red chop marks as indicated in the following picture. You will later get lots of new sprouts.
Next I would tilt the tree to the left and get rid of the high located aerial roots (blue). However, you can leave the left one of the two blue marked aerial roots on to ensure the top grows with the bottom, until you see a fattening in that spot. That's the time to cut this aerial root off.
I am just mentioning that because the retusa is branch dominant, meaning first branch gets nutrients first, then the second one and so on. The top grows much slower and needs more attention once the lower structure is set. High aerial roots can accomodate this task.
The other two aerial roots to the left (blue) have already started to develop reverse taper, they need to go now.
There is more than one way to prune this tree back and style it, my suggestion is only one of them.

Best,
dorothy

Ups, BonsaiMon was faster to post that me..did not see it
 

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roelex14

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thanks to everyone so far! i would love to see some more suggestions of ideas, but what i got so far is great!
one question, does it matter when it is pruned back? or can i do it now beings its is tropical?

p.s. i will try to get some more pics with an actual camera, not my phone asap and try to get the species.
 

irene_b

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I second what Cascade says....
And the chop back as well.
 

BonsaiMon

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i think cascade may be right about the species.. also a nice detailed plan of attack..
the temp lows will dictate when you do major work.
above 70F you can prune hard at any time.. i've done it when the temps drop on occasion below 40F and they take longer.
i've worked philipenesis, benjamina and green island..letting them go into the ground in my greenhouse.
another method would be to leave it as is except for tip prunning the branches.. forcing growth back.. when the canopy gets fuller it will drop aerial roots. This will bring greater girth to the trunk and present roots. the large roots going into the ground can be cut back severly when you repot.
from the size of the roots leaping out of the pot and canopy, i'd estimate a year in the ground.. maybe less.
are you planning on working in the greenhouse long?
 

roelex14

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i plan on taking it out of this green house, but moving it to another where i'd have room to work (this one is like the amazon forest). the temp is usually between 75 and 80 degrees.

then take it out of this pot and put it into a shallow growing flat. then start with the hard pruning.
 

irene_b

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The roots growing into the ground can be potted as well.
 

BonsaiMon

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75-80 F will keep it growing in the dark.. well.. almost dark.. :)
i'd cut it back somewhat when moving into a pot. it will be easier to keep it stable in the container.
what will the conditions be like in its new home?
 

roelex14

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75-80 F will keep it growing in the dark.. well.. almost dark.. :)
i'd cut it back somewhat when moving into a pot. it will be easier to keep it stable in the container.
what will the conditions be like in its new home?

im pretty sure it is lit all day.
just got the ok to work on it, will be going to start tomorrow afternoon.
will have step by step photos posted along with measurements

bonsimon - what do u mean cut it back a bit when moving into a new pot? roots right?
 

roelex14

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p.s. - would it be a good idea to wash out the roots when repotting?
 

BonsaiMon

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right now it is supported from falling out of the pot by the roots in the ground .. if you don't cut it back it will be a bit tippsy.. i would cut it way back to the first growth coming off all the branches going upward. Cascade's suggestion to remove the 'Y' in the two large branches is good advice.. you can do that now also.
Fresh soil won't hurt.. what is your soil mix? If it is in a good pourus mix it isn't absolutly necessary to wash it off totally but that will be your call.
After repotting give it a light feed.. osmocote works for me.. i also use espoma plant tone flowers and vegtables trees and shrubs.
 
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roelex14

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i am going to be moving it to another green house
is it ok if both roots and hard pruning are done at the same time. i plan to cut where cascade indicated. will these be proper spots?
 

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