Ficus Defoliation Day

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Ficus Defoliation Day

Post  sulrich on Sun Jun 06, 2010 4:28 pm

Hi,

this recent posting by amazonida: http://ibonsaiclub.forumotion.com/bonsai-f1/ficus-sp-where-to-go-from-here-t3213.htm#32073 tempted me to try this with my Ficus retusa too. I got it last winter and it's growing quite well, even in the rather low light conditions indoors in winter. Here's how it originally looked in February 2009 after purchase:


After repotting and wiring in Summer 2009:




and here's a picture from one month ago (we had a very chilly spring, so I only put it outside a few weeks ago):


Now the weather forecast is sunny with 28 to 32°C (that's 82 - 90°F) for the next week, and I had fertilized it a few weeks ago, so now seemed a good time to defoliate. I also cut back the long shoots to the points where I wanted the ramification to develop ... now let's see how it will react.





Best regards,
Stefan


Last edited by sulrich on Sun Jun 06, 2010 5:04 pm; edited 1 time in total

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Re: Ficus Defoliation Day

Post  Hawaiian77 on Sun Jun 06, 2010 4:53 pm

Howzit Sultich,

Nice job. ThumbsUp It's looking really good. I like your choice of pot. Very Happy

A Hui Hou,
-Tim Cool

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Re: Ficus Defoliation Day

Post  Jerry Meislik on Sun Jun 06, 2010 7:41 pm

Keep us posted on the progress of the defoliation.
Jerry
www.bonsaihunk.us

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Re: Ficus Defoliation Day

Post  sulrich on Sun Jun 06, 2010 8:06 pm

Hi,

will do Smile

Best regards,
Stefan

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Re: Ficus Defoliation Day

Post  WOG on Sun Jun 06, 2010 8:44 pm

super ficus

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Re: Ficus Defoliation Day

Post  amazonida on Sun Jun 06, 2010 9:44 pm

i like your ficus! thanks for being you "inspiration" Cool where are you located? US? for how long you have been growing that Ficus? is it a Ficus Microcarpa "tiger bark" right?

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Re: Ficus Defoliation Day

Post  sulrich on Sun Jun 06, 2010 10:27 pm

Hi,

amazonida wrote:i like your ficus! thanks for being you "inspiration"
Ah, if only I had access to that kind of material that you've shown here ... you could have one or two of my fine Peter Krebs pots in exchange Smile

where are you located? US? for how long you have been growing that Ficus? is it a Ficus Microcarpa "tiger bark" right?
I guess so - however I didn't really "grow" it - that would take a heated greenhouse and many years in my climate (southern Germany) ;-) It's an imported tree (allegedly from Indonesia) that I just bought about 1 1/2 years ago, in the state shown in the first picture above.

Best regards,
Stefan

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I just defoliated my F. Benjamina

Post  Zootenval on Mon Jun 07, 2010 1:09 pm

Hi:

New to the forum. I defoliated my Ficus Benjamina last Sunday, 5/30. It is already filling in nicely with smaller foliage. Comments appreciated.


Before defoliation 5/30/2010


After Defoliation 5/30/2010


One week later 6/30/2010

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Re: Ficus Defoliation Day

Post  sulrich on Mon Jul 12, 2010 7:41 pm

Hi,

This is how my Ficus currently looks like - due to a cold snap in June, it took a bit longer for it to leaf out:





Best regards,
Stefan

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Re: Ficus Defoliation Day

Post  Jaco Kriek on Tue Jul 13, 2010 7:50 am

Hi Sulrich
Is there more ramification and are leafs smaller?
Jaco.

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Re: Ficus Defoliation Day

Post  sulrich on Tue Jul 13, 2010 8:29 am

Hi Jaco,

can't tell about the leaf size for sure since the leaves are still growing, but the ramification has definitely improved; here's a closeup from a few weeks ago that shows better that there are several new shoots on most of the branches:


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Re: Ficus Defoliation Day

Post  Hawaiian77 on Tue Jul 13, 2010 9:23 am

Howzit Stefan,

It's coming along nicely..... just wish you had more sun light and warmer weather. Smile

A Hui Hou,
-Tim Cool

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A note about leaf size

Post  Billy M. Rhodes on Tue Jul 13, 2010 12:22 pm

After defoliation regular pruning is required to keep leaves smaller. The first leaf is always smaller, so when your tree has produced two new leaves from each bud, cut just before the first leaf. As an alternative you can break out the growing bud. Either way those new leaves will not get any larger in size and new growth will form. This is how you get smaler leaves and ramification on Ficus.

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Re: Ficus Defoliation Day

Post  sulrich on Tue Jul 13, 2010 7:34 pm

Hi,

Billy, thanks a lot for your advice! I was planning to let it grow unhindered for a while, as recommended in Jerry Meislik's Ficus book for non-tropical growing conditions, but since it's very vigorous now and I also had tried this more aggressive pruning approach on a smaller Ficus microcarpa before, I think I'll cut it back now - it's just at this stage where most shoots have more than 2 leaves already.

Tim - well actually we're having quite a heatwave, it's been around 30°C/86.00°F for 2 weeks now, with 20°C/68°F at night, I think I couldn't stand much more of it ;-)

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Re: Ficus Defoliation Day

Post  Hawaiian77 on Tue Jul 13, 2010 7:43 pm

sulrich wrote:
Tim - well actually we're having quite a heatwave, it's been around 30°C/86.00°F for 2 weeks now, with 20°C/68°F at night, I think I couldn't stand much more of it ;-)

Howzit Sulrich,

I "LOVE" that kind of weather!! ThumbsUp It's like that almost all year round here on Maui. Dance In the summer it gets up to the 90's but the humidity is high. Anything below 74 degrees is to cold for me. lol! lol!

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Re: Ficus Defoliation Day

Post  sulrich on Sun Jun 05, 2011 10:29 pm

Hi,

update after one year - I defoliated again, and thanks to Billy's pruning tips, the ramification is developing nicely!

Also changed to a glazed, oval Tokoname pot which seems to fit the style better ...


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Re: Ficus Defoliation Day

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