Ficus Nerifolia Bonsai Tree #95051
Ficus bonsai have long been a popular variety among enthusiasts, but surprisingly little has been written or published concerning their care and cultivation.
This is unfortunate because of the more than 800 species of ficus, many make excellent material for bonsai. Ficus (figs) are in the Mulberry or Moraceae family and are generally tropical or sub-tropical (no freezing).
The four most commonly used for bonsai cultivation include: Willow leaf fig (Ficus salicifolia); Chinese Banyan (Ficus retusa, nitida and/or green island); Weeping fig, (Ficus benjamina, including varieties such as kiki, too little & several others) and Creeping fig (Ficus microcarpa, pumila, repens).
Ficus have several characteristics which have helped them to survive over the centuries. For one, they are “epiphytic.”
This means they have the ability to begin life on another tree. Seed deposited by the wind or a bird on the bark of another tree will begin to grow.
In time the fig will send down roots to the soil and foliage upwards into the canopy of its “host”.
Once the figs roots reach the ground it is only a matter of time before the plant will overtake and eventually “strangle” its host. Hence the term strangler figs, which describes this unusual characteristic typical of many figs.