Climbers

Ficus repens

The Ficus repens is known by several common names such as the climbing fig tree, the climbing or carpet ficus, creeping ficus, Chinese ficus or dwarf ficus. This is because it is a plant of the genus Ficus that has somewhat smaller leaves than the rest of the species. These leaves are characteristic for having a heart shape. Its climbing behavior makes it an excellent upholstery plant and for decoration both indoors and outdoors, as long as the climate and care are appropriate.

In this article we are going to show you what are the main characteristics of Ficus repens and what care it needs to take advantage of it as a decoration plant.

Main features

You will surely see the scientific name of Ficus pumila if you look for more information about this plant. It is also known by that name. The characteristic leaves of this plant are heart-shaped and are usually about 3 cm long. They are located along a trunk that forms a kind of stem. Being a climbing plant, it needs a large space to be able to develop fully. This is one of the drawbacks that this plant presents when we are developing it indoors. However, it is excellent for covering certain spaces in the garden with its covering power.

Normally, it is a perfect plant for decoration and can be used in different areas. We are going to list some of the structures where Ficus repens best hits.

  • Near wooden huts. If we have a wooden tool shed, the climbing fig tree can be placed extending over the roof of the same or along the side walls.
  • Garden trees. You can also place it on some branches of other trees to make it more jungle-like.
  • Walls of both the house and the porch.
  • In the bars or the entrances of the house.
  • Topiaries

Although these are quite interesting places to place this plant, it can be used in any type of container or pot. If you want, it even looks pretty good if we place it as a hanging plant. All this versatility of uses gives it advantages when it comes to being used. However, its limitation is the climate.

Although it is a plant whose characteristics are excellent, we cannot have them outdoors if our climate is usually mild to cold with night frosts.

Plantation of Ficus repens

To improve the decoration with this species of climbing plant, we are going to list some species with which it combines perfectly:

  • Passiflora
  • Mill palm
  • Bignonia Capreolata
  • Loropetalum

When it comes to planting Ficus repens we have to know that you can grow them out of season. It is not necessary to respect a fixed time. They are often used as a ground cover for other species. It serves to keep the soil moist and even prevent erosion. If you place it on a wall so that it has a climbing behavior, you will see that it is capable of reaching up to 6 meters in height.

Its propagation is quite simple once we take the roots of the stem to transplant it. We are going to explain to you step by step how you should plant the climbing fig tree:

  • Buy a good quality potting soil. The substrate can contain good nutrients without having to be expensive.
  • The planter should have drainage holes so that irrigation water does not accumulate.
  • We prepare the container with potting soil up to 5 cm from the edge of the plant. If the weather permits, you can sow it directly outside. Later we will see the care and requirements it has.
  • We will make a small hole in the ground to introduce the Ficus seed.
  • We add water abundantly so that they have good growth.
  • The location should be in a sunny place and with not too much exposure to the wind.

Once you have planted them, they will most likely stick easily to the wall. Do not try to remove it from there as it is not good for your fabric.

Necessary care

We are going to describe the care that Ficus repens needs so that you can enjoy it for a long time. In general, it is not a plant that has difficulty in its maintenance or care. It is difficult to make this plant not grow easily. One of the main tasks that you will have to do when you have it is pruning. To be able to have it with a suitable size and adapted to your garden, pruning is essential. Above all, if you plant it indoors, you will have to adjust its size to that of the room.

It needs a watering at ground level every 5-7 days. When we are watering we will not wet the foliage, only the substrate. The indicator to know when to water is to have the soil moist, never soggy. If when we water we let the irrigation water accumulate, we will be causing some diseases and the deterioration of the plant. Therefore, if we have it in a pot, it is important that the pot has drainage holes.

Once a month we will use a slow release liquid fertilizer. During the growing season we will give it to you once a month. However, when it has reached adulthood, it will only need to be used once a year.

As for the pruning mentioned above, it is quite free and to taste. The recommended time to do it is in spring, when temperatures are highest. With pruning, you can have the size and shape you want for decoration.

To keep the plant in good condition, it is convenient to clean the dust from the leaves with a damp towel to improve the decoration and avoid some pests.

Plagues and diseases

It is a plant that resists well to pests and infections by insects. However, you have to keep an eye on them in case anyone attacks you, especially outdoors.

The hottest season is the most dangerous for this plant. It can be attacked by:

  • Beetles
  • Mealybugs
  • Spider mites
  • Red spider

I hope that with this information you can learn more about Ficus repens and the care it needs.

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