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The evergreen indoor plant Ficus Benjamina was named after the famous British botanist Jackson Benjamin Daydon. Ficus Benjamin belongs to the Mulberry or Moraceae family and is a very popular houseplant among flower growers both in our country and abroad.
Ficus Benjamin is incredibly popular among lovers of indoor floriculture, masters of phytodesign and landscaping. Proper care contributes to the rapid growth of Benjamin. A plant can reach a height of two or more meters.
The following species and varieties of ficus are the most popular among flower growers:
- Ficus Danielle
- Ficus Exotica;
- Ficus Monique;
- Ficus Barok;
- variate ficus Starlight;
- variegate ficus Reginald;
- small-leaved ficus Natasja;
- small-leaved ficus Kinky;
- small-leaved ficus Wiandi.
Ficus Benjamin has erect shoots, a round stem part and a very peculiar foliage. Leaves can be glossy, smooth, thin-leathery, oblong-oval and have a pointed top. The average length of the leaves varies from 6 to 13 centimeters, the width can vary from 2 to 6 centimeters.
Whole leaves are arranged alternately and are formed in one plane. The feathery-loop-like type of venation is characteristic, the central vein has a weak severity and branches into eight or more lateral veins. Petiole rarely exceeds a couple of centimeters. Coloring of bark is gray with insignificant impregnations of brown color. The crown is wide, the type of branches drooping.
Benefit and harm
Benjamin's ficuses are practically harmless, however, growing these plants at room conditions requires caution if there is a tendency to allergic reactions, which is associated with the peculiarities of the ficus milky juice. The main benefits brought by this plant can be considered cleansing and improving indoor air quality. This property is due to the ability of ficus to absorb toxic substances such as formaldehyde, phenols and benzenes.
In some countries, Benjamin's ficus is used as a remedy for cancer of the female genital organs. Tinctures from the leaves of this species of ficus are used for diseases such as osteochondrosis, radiculitis and arthritis.
How to crop Benjamin's ficus
Benjamin's ficuses are unpretentious and easily withstand insufficiently professional care, which makes it possible to recommend their cultivation even to beginner growers, as well as people who are limited in their free time.
A permanent place for the plant should be well lit. A good option is the windowsill. In summer, Benjamin's ficus can be taken out onto a balcony or loggia, but at the same time, the plant should be protected from atmospheric precipitation and wind.
For ficus Benjamin, direct sunlight is a significant danger. Therefore, it is important to shade the plant. In winter, the ficus will have to be illuminated with fluorescent lamps. The temperature should not fall below 15 degrees heat. The plant should be protected from sharp temperature fluctuations.
Too low humidity in the room can cause ficus. To ensure sufficient humidity, it is often necessary to spray and rinse the plant with warm and clean water.
Watering and feeding
Watering is carried out after drying of the upper layer three centimeters in depth. Ficuses are easier to tolerate a slight overdrying of the soil than a gulf of soil. Watering should provide an even distribution of moisture over the earthen coma. Excess moisture should not accumulate in a pan under a flower pot. For irrigation, it is recommended to use settled water at room temperature.
The first couple of months after planting or replanting the plant does not need to be fed. Further, special fertilizers are used for top dressing, which are sold in flower shops. Feeding ficus Benjamin is produced in the spring and summer. Fertilization is carried out twice a week. Organics should be alternated with mineral fertilizers.
At the stage of active growth and development of the plant, fertilizers should be used, which contain a significant amount of nitrogen. Fertilizer must be added to water when watering. In the winter, the plant goes to the resting stage and ceases to need additional nutrition.
Transplantation of ficus Benjamin is required in case of:
- complete braiding of the earth coma by the root system of the plant;
- drying out the soil too quickly after watering;
- exposing the root system of the plant and the insufficient size of the flower pot.
Two centimeters of drainage, two centimeters of high-quality planting soil substrate should be laid at the bottom of the new pot, then the plant is transferred from the old container to a new one by transshipment. Next, the entire volume of the pot with the plant should be filled with soil.
For ficus, the transplant process is stressful. Immediately after transplantation, a slowdown in development or falling of foliage is observed. Watering during this period is recommended to partially replace with spraying.
Proper pruning of ficus not only promotes the acquisition of the desired shape by the plant, but also allows you to rejuvenate it. The formation of the crown consists in shortening and trimming the branches, as well as directing them in the right direction through the use of stretch marks. In order to form a more magnificent and beautiful crown of the plant, pruning of shoots should be carried out in the spring. Activation of the growth process after winter holidays is the best time for pruning.
After reading the corresponding article on our resource, you can learn about the secrets of forming a beautiful and non-standard crown in ficus.
Indoor plants quite often can be affected by various microorganisms that cause diseases. Ficus Benjamin is no exception and can be affected by diseases as a result of:
- unsuitable for plant lighting;
- violation of the temperature regime and moisture indicators during cultivation;
- irrigation regime violations.
Plants weakened by improper care are often affected by infectious and fungal diseases, among which the following are especially common:
- powdery mildew;
- black or black fungus;
- root rot.
In order to treat and prevent diseases, special fungicides are treated.
Benjamin's ficus can be invaded by a variety of pests. Among them:
- scale shield;
- flower aphid;
- spider mites.
Treatment should be started as early as possible. It is allowed to use both folk remedies against plant parasites, and highly specialized chemicals.
Ficus Benjamin: Transplant
Ficus Benjamin is an excellent indoor flower plant. From other varieties of ficus, this houseplant compares favorably with elegance and unpretentiousness, which makes it a favorite of most beginner gardeners. Observance of simple rules will allow you to grow a very useful and beautiful plant with minimal time and effort.