How to Propagate Ficus Pumila
Ficus pumila is a member of the genus "Ficus." There are over 1,000 members of this botanical genus, including Ficus elastica (rubber tree) and Ficus bejamina (weeping fig). Ficus pumila is also known as the "creeping fig" plant, because of the aerial rootlets along its stem that anchor themselves to trellises, arbors or walls. Planted directly in the ground, ficus pumila grows and climbs up to 20 feet tall. Although ficus pumila propagates by seed, air-layering or water rooting, Texas A&M University recommends propagation by water rooting.
Examine a healthy ficus pumila. Find a branch that is healthy, with leaves growing on it.
Trim a 6- to 8- inch piece off the healthy branch, using gardening shears. If you don't have gardening shears, use a sharp pair of scissors. Avoid breaking the cutting off with your hands, as this creates a jagged wound that is more difficult for the plant to heal.
Remove the leaves from the lower 3 inches of the ficus pumila stem cutting.
Fill a glass with filtered water, and put the cutting into the water with the wound side down. The use of rooting hormone is not necessary, because ficus pumila roots so well. If you want to speed up the rooting process, however, dip the wound into rooting hormone before placing the cutting into the water.
Change the water once a week, draining the existing water and replacing with fresh. Check the wound end of the cutting when you change the water, looking for root development. When the rootlets are 2 inches long, the cutting is ready to be planted in soil.
Fill a small flower pot with potting mix. Saturate the potting soil with water, and let the excess water drain out of the pot.
Make a hole in the center of the potting mix with your finger. Plant the ficus pumila stem cutting into the hole, and fill the hole in with more soil. From there on out, water the ficus pumila when the top inch of soil is dry to the touch.
- Small pruning shears
- Small flower pot with a drainage hole
- Potting mix
- Ficus pumila
- Rooting hormone (optional)