How to Care for a Braided Ficus Tree

Overview

When young, the ficus benjamina stalks are tender, and specialty growers sometimes braid them together. As the trees grow, the braided stalks fuse together to form a woody trunk with a beautiful pattern. Care for them as you would a non-braided ficus.

Step 1

Place the braided ficus tree in a location where it will receive sunlight, but not direct sun rays, for at least half the day. A room with windows will work, as long as sunshine is coming in the windows and the tree isn't placed directly in the sun.

Step 2

Water every two or three days, depending upon how fast the soil dries, but make sure it drains well. Because ficus benjamina tends to lose its leaves every time the soil dries out, you don't want the soil to become dry but you also don't want the roots to sit in water, so your watering schedule may change with the seasons, in order to keep the soil from drying.

Step 3

Prune annually to remove branches that are in the way, growing at odd angles, or to keep the top rounded. Use sharp hand-held pruning shears and avoid removing large branches.

Step 4

Repot if you want the tree to grow larger. Ficus trees can grow huge and for indoor use, you probably don't want a tree you can climb. Once it reaches the maximum size you prefer, keep it in that pot.

Step 5

Fertilize annually with spiked tree food that will activate as the tree is watered.

Things You'll Need

  • Water
  • Pruning shears
  • Fertilizer spikes

References

  • Ficus Benjamina
  • Ficus Houseplant Care
Keywords: braided ficus, ficus care, ficus tree

About this Author

Lisa Russell has been a freelance writer since 1998. She's been published in "Rethinking Everything Magazine," "Playdate" and "Home Educator's Family Times." She has a professional background in education, cosmetology and the restaurant industry. Russell studied early childhood education at Antelope Valley College, and is pursuing a degree in law.