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The little brother of the Ficus benjamina is quite easy to care for and therefore the ideal houseplant to grow as a bonsai.

The scientific name for Ficus Ginseng is actually Chinese fig or bay fig (Ficus microcarpa). However, since his intertwined foot is reminiscent of ginseng roots, his nickname quickly caught on. And the name comes up quite often, because both in offices and in furniture stores, it is quite undemanding for a bonsai. houseplant very popular. In order to enjoy the plant for a long time, you must know its basic needs.

Ficus Ginseng Care: The Ideal Indoor Tree for Bonsai Beginners

A potted Chinese fig (Ficus microcarpa) on a windowsill
The unusual foot of the Chinese fig (Ficus microcarpa) is reminiscent of ginseng root. © agefotostock/Imago

While the laurel fig can reach heights of 25 meters in Malaysia, its growth as a houseplant remains compact, rarely exceeding the two meter mark. If you buy the Ficus Ginseng in the garden center, it has usually been raised, grafted and cut for 15 years, explains the portal haus.de.

If you let things take their course it will grow bigger and bigger, if you want to grow it as a bonsai the plant needs constant pruning. This also keeps the leaves small. At least every year, in spring, it must be cut to a large extent, but only the branches and the crown of leaves, not the trunk of the plant. The portal bonsaiempire.de advises cutting the ficus to about two leaves after they have grown to six to eight leaves.

However, it should be noted that the ficus ginseng is a poisonous dwarf, the milky sap that becomes unpleasant when touched is in all parts of the plant. Especially cat owners. must be carefull

Spring is also a good time to shape Ficus Ginseng if you want to keep it as a bonsai.

You can find even more exciting gardening topics in the regular newsletter of our partner 24garten.de.

Normal houseplant care for Ficus Ginseng

No matter how big the ficus grows, it has the following requirements in terms of location and care:

  • Location: bright and without direct sun. If the ficus is too dark, it loses its leaves. In summer it likes temperatures around 18 to 22 degrees Celsius, in winter between 15 and 18 degrees Celsius.
  • Watering: moderate with soft water keep moist without drying out the substrate. Absolutely avoid waterlogging.
  • Fertilize: every two weeks from March to September with a normal fertilizer for green plants.
  • Repot: every two years in spring.

If the ficus loses its leaves, this can also have other causes: too much irrigation water, too much drought or a change of location.

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