Ficus diversifolia and also known as Ficus deltoidea, is commonly called mistletoe fig as it resembles the common mistletoe plant. It is an evergreen perennial with thick, oval foliage and an upright, spreading habit. The plant resembles a miniature tree, slowly reaching an average mature height of three feet with a spread of two feet. Plants are hardy and relatively maintenance-free as well as drought tolerant. They work well as houseplants and are easily propagated through stem cuttings taken in springtime.
Sterilize your pruning shears before taking the Ficus diversifolia stem cutting so diseases are not transferred to the cutting and plant. Wipe the pruning shear’s blades with a cloth dipped in rubbing alcohol.
Snip a branch that is approximately 6 inches long and has at least three leaf nodules on it. Cut the branch right below a leaf nodule. Snip off all the leaves except the top two so the plant will put its energy into developing roots instead of forming foliage.
Fill a 4-inch container with peat and perlite, using 50 percent of each to create the soil mixture. The peat has a tendency to retain moisture and the perlite will make the mix lightweight for easier root formation.
Water the container until the soil is fully saturated and moist. The cutting requires a moist soil medium so the roots will develop at its end.
Pour a small amount of rooting hormone onto a paper towel and dip the end of the Ficus diversifolia cutting into it. Shake off any excess hormone. Dipping the cutting into the container itself can spread disease to the mixture, which will transfer to future cuttings.
Stick the end of the cutting into the potting mix approximately 2 inches, being sure the bottom leaf nodule is covered in soil. Gently pack the soil around the cutting to hold it upright inside the container.
Place a plastic bag over the top of the cutting and around the container, securing it in place with a rubber band. This will help the containerized soil retain moisture while the cutting develops roots.
Situate the container in an area that receives indirect sunlight for approximately two weeks and remove the plastic bag. Gently wiggle the cutting to see if its beginning to form roots and remain in place in the soil.
Repot the cutting into a larger container filled with regular potting mix after roots develop. Water after replanting and continue watering the cutting as the soil begins to feel dry.
Things You Will Need
- Pruning shears
- Rubbing alcohol
- Rooting hormone
- Paper towel
- Plastic bag
- Rubber band