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Do I HAVE TO repot my ficus Benjamina (weeping fig)?

Posted: Sun Sep 28, 2014 2:16 pm
by Toujoursmax
I have had a weeping fig/ficus for 35 years. I have repotted it every 8 years or so, but now it weighs at least 50 pounds, and if I repot it, it will be even harder to handle. It is doing well but I can see that it is pot bound. Do I HAVE to repot it, or can I leave it as is?

Re: Do I HAVE TO repot my ficus Benjamina (weeping fig)?

Posted: Sun Sep 28, 2014 2:25 pm
by tomc
You can prune the roots (as well as the top) when you repot. Go slow and repot slightly smaller more frequently than every eight years.

I might stop before you get down to twelve inches tall....

Re: Do I HAVE TO repot my ficus Benjamina (weeping fig)?

Posted: Sun Sep 28, 2014 3:53 pm
by imafan26
Ficus are at least pretty forgiving and can stay in a pot a very long time, but eventually it will break the pot. Root and top pruning will help to keep it smaller. When mine got too big, I started another. I know sacrilege, the idea is to have something that can be passed down, but I know how big a banyan can get.

Re: Do I HAVE TO repot my ficus Benjamina (weeping fig)?

Posted: Sun Sep 28, 2014 7:50 pm
by applestar
I like tomc's idea 8)

My parents had a ficus benjamina that got too big for them to handle and they abandoned it outside in the fall a couple of years ago. Had I known, I would have adopted it and reduced it as described. :(

Re: Do I HAVE TO repot my ficus Benjamina (weeping fig)?

Posted: Mon Sep 29, 2014 1:03 pm
by imafan26
Your parents were lucky. If you forget a ficus on the ground long enough, it will root and it will be tough trying to get it out. I have to keep lifting my pot because the small leaved fig will send a root out the drain hole and I have pulled out roots that went 3-5 ft out more than once. Sneaky plant.

Re: Do I HAVE TO repot my ficus Benjamina (weeping fig)?

Posted: Mon Sep 29, 2014 4:42 pm
by ElizabethB
You have a beautiful specimen plant. I agree with Tom. Top and root prune. Root you top cuttings. I would not root prune drastically enough to reduce the pot size. Just enough to keep it in the same pot. Your Ficus will probably lose most or all of it's leaves but don't fret. Put it back in it's home. It will recover.

Beautiful plant.

Looking at your picture - a larger pot is probably a good idea. The diameter of the pot compared to the canopy is out of proportion. The pot is too small.