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Plant Identification: SOLVED: Ficus Benjamina?

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Forum: Plant IdentificationReplies: 6, Views: 62
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Archbold, OH

November 25, 2012
10:16 AM

Post #9341999

I picked up this tree at Meijer. It was only listed as small bonsai. It was buried way in the back and was obviously not exactly a small bonsai anymore.
It looks to me like a ficus benjamina but I really don't know for sure. I repotted it and did some work on it, it is recovering from nicely so I am getting ready to defoliate it and let it recover from that then put it up for sale so it is really important to properly identify it.

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San Francisco, CA

November 25, 2012
12:16 PM

Post #9342113

your plant is not F. benjamina; it is not the "Chinese banyan", F. microcarpa either. It is one of the species that is regularly imported in large numbers from Asia, and is known in the trade as "Hong Kong fig". I cannot find a species to put together with that common name.

The other ficus seen as bonsai imports are the "ginseng fig", the "green island fig", "Chinese banyan", and "weeping fig" F. benjamina.

Ficus botany is perticularly vexing.
Archbold, OH

November 25, 2012
12:36 PM

Post #9342125

Thank you very much Vestia,

That gives me a good start, I googled Hong Kong Fig and it does look a lot like it. I generally make my purchases from a nursery where I know what the tree is and it will be healthy. I cannot pass up some of the cheap walmart type trees when I know they are underpriced though lol.


United Kingdom
(Zone 9a)

November 25, 2012
2:26 PM

Post #9342181

I'm not convinced it's a fig at all, I can't see the typical fig growing point form. Can you post a macro close-up of an active growing point?

Archbold, OH

November 25, 2012
2:56 PM

Post #9342212

I don't have a very good camera right now, hopefully these help a little.

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Spring, TX

November 25, 2012
3:40 PM

Post #9342254

Yup, it's a Hong Kong Ficus. So many of these with the same bent trunk are being imported and sold by Bonsai dealers to Home Depots and even some grocery markets. It is very common but a great plant for a novice or a master. They style easily and they are really tough to kill. Almost maintenance free. They can take dry conditions, wet conditions, sunny to shady places and thrive on neglect.
Archbold, OH

November 25, 2012
5:07 PM

Post #9342315

Thank you Everyone. I think it is solved.
I am going to do some work to this tree and try to make it into something special and hold onto it for awhile until it is something really sellable. I have seen others like it before in the stores with the bent trunk but what caught my eye was the size and maturity of this one. It was very root bound in its original pot, looked like it had been sitting around the store for awhile.

You all come up with the answers fast, I will post some of my other trees :)

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