Newly Registered
Posts: 1
Joined: Thu Jun 10, 2010 4:24 pm
Location: louisville, ky

Questions about Ficus Retusa? help appreciated.

Hello, Just found this forum today, and I'm hoping someone can help me out.. I recently purchase a pretty large Ficus Retusa, ( about 2 ft. tall,) bonsai,

I'm currently dealing with what i believe to be THRIPS. i've read to cut back the curled leaves w/ the buggers in it... now where is the best way to trim back this tree. on the branch? not sure how to explain this... if i want to rid of a few leaves w/ bugs, curled, ext. where do i make the cut to ensure new growth ? i wish i had a picture..

above the node?

please help.

Green Thumb
Posts: 469
Joined: Sat May 22, 2010 5:15 pm
Location: NJ

Without a picture it's hard to tell. Depends on how big the canopy and how rigorous it's growing. You may want to be selective and cut more toward the ends on the softwood above the leaf bud if the growth is thin but if it has a lot of leaves and branch structure, can cut semi-hard wood or hard wood. They are fast growers and new leafs will come back in a week or 2. I'm sure there are also other suggestions by more experienced people on here.
ficus, maple, elm, juniper, pine

Green Thumb
Posts: 380
Joined: Wed Dec 24, 2008 7:05 am
Location: Elizabeth, PA

I can't help with the pest problem, but ficus will backbud wherever you cut it. If you take off the growing end, it will begin making new branches at the leaves just below the cut. If you cut through the petiole, it will create a branch where that leaf was. So it's really all in how you want the tree to look. Good luck with your pests, I'm sorry I can't be of more help with them.


Cool Member
Posts: 60
Joined: Fri Dec 26, 2008 8:13 pm
Location: South Florida

I have the same issue on both my ficus bonsai. In the past, the only thing I have been able to do to control the bugs is complete defoliation. I cut every single leaf off at the end of the petiole. More often than not, the bugs are gone after that. They come back two to three times a year, and I have had to do the same thing every single time. I have tried spraying the trees with soap and water solutions. I have tried tobacco and nicotine water solutions. I have used bug spray. Those little critters are stubborn and they do not seem to care at all. If you take away their place to lay eggs, they will go away.

Return to “BONSAI FORUM”