Ficus benghalensis (Banyan Tree)
Native to tropical rainforests of western and central Africa
Medium to bright filtered. Avoid low light. Tolerates some direct sun.
18-24°C. Keep above 10°C. Protect from sudden temperature drops and hot or cold drafts.
Weekly. Water moderately and allow thoroughly moist potting mix to dry within top 2-3”. Sensitive to overwatering and susceptible to root rot. Always check moisture level before watering. Aerate mix to improve its condition.
Every 2 weeks (spring-fall). Use organic houseplant fertilizer, according to packaging instructions.
Every 1-2 weeks, rotate plant to ensure even growth. Every 1-2 months, mist leaves heavily to free accumulated dust and inspect for pests, when doing so. Remove spent leaves. Prune annually (spring) with sterile shears. Cut back to just above leaf node, as far down stem as desired. Apply paper towel to stanch sap flow from wounds; let dry overnight.
Potting and Repotting
Soil-based potting mix. For small plants: every 1-2 years (spring) move plant into a planter 1-2” larger (diameter and depth); or, repot in the same planter, using new potting mix, after cleaning planter and partially trimming back roots and foliage. For large plants: every 2-3 years (spring) move plant into a planter 2-4” larger (diameter and depth); or, repot in the same planter, using new potting mix, after cleaning planter and partially trimming back roots and foliage. Top dress annually, once maximum convenient planter size reached.
Special Points/Common Problems:
- Brown tips with yellow edging may suggest overwatering.
- Fully yellow leaves and crispy brown tips without yellow edging may suggest underwatering.
- Isolated, brown spots, cracks or tears on an otherwise healthy leaf and plant may suggest damage from physical trauma. Scars remain unsightly for the plant’s life.
- May drop leaves when transplanted, moved or subject to environmental changes in light or temperature.