Ficus trunk chop and cutting

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Ficus trunk chop and cutting

Postby Kyle Goldcoast1 » February 9th, 2019, 5:42 pm

This was a few months ago started back in early December but thought I would post the progress. I bought a tall ficus from a nursery which has a really nice root flare but long bare trunk and a couple randomly long branches. Sorry I didn't take a photo of the original tree before the chop.
Anyway so I did a trunk chop at what I thought was a reasonable height to allow branches to form and make a nice wide apex and put that trunk into a nice big grow pot I had around which surrounded the trunk (again sorry but didn't take a photo of this point). My thinking was it would increase the humidity a little bit extra and allow better growth. I also added some of the root hormone to the top chop, at the time I thought it would help with keeping moisture in the tree and not leak out the top and dehydrating the tree.
These photos of the base were taken about 2 weeks after repotting and the chop.
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I took 2 cuttings from the tree. 1 was the top portion of the trunk, I cut about 15cm away and didn't think it would root being the middle of the trunk. I used some rooting hormone gel and let the trunk sit in the gel for a few minutes before planting in a small pot. The same went for one of the randomly long branches, except this one went into a square bonsai pot I had from a different pot belly fig I bought last year.


I had the 2 cuttings growing in a small greenhouse I made from leftover timber and some painters plastic drop sheet. I think it worked a treat as I didn't have many leaves drop and the growth went better than expected.


Fast forward 10 weeks and this is the growth of the trunk. Coming along nicely, I did keep an eye on it and cut some of the shoots off to focus on the growth of branches that were in alternating positions. It had a lot of shoots that were coming from the same spot or either 1cm directly horizontal or vertical to another. Trying to develop a good balance of branches around the trunk.

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I recently repotted the trunk cutting and wow was I surprised about the root system. It was root bound in the pot and had some solid roots. I did a little trim of the roots but didn't want to do too much as it was still developing. I repotted into a larger pot and had the wire on about 4 weeks into the first potting so that will need to be changed soon.

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The second cutting I am yet to report but I did get a few leaves drop and doesn't look like it has had much new growth so not sure how the roots will look on that one. I'm repotting that one tomorrow so will post the update.

Also does anyone know the type of fig this is?
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Re: Ficus trunk chop and cutting

Postby Raging Bull » February 9th, 2019, 7:14 pm

Looks like it could be a Qld small leaf fig. They're very common up here.
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Re: Ficus trunk chop and cutting

Postby Keep Calm and Ramify » February 9th, 2019, 8:12 pm

:lost: Looks like Ficus Benjamina (Weeping Fig) to me.
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Re: Ficus trunk chop and cutting

Postby DangerousDave » February 9th, 2019, 11:40 pm

I haven’t looked through your whole post yet, sorry.. but in the interest of what’s responding to what’s currently trending, and because I usually can’t help myself with throwing my :2c: in on an ID..

...agree.. looks like a benji to me..
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Re: Ficus trunk chop and cutting

Postby benbonsai » February 10th, 2019, 6:32 am

Definitely a Benjamin fig
I have done this to a few of them, they grow really fast so you should have something resembling a bonsai in a year or so.
Just select your branches wisely and continually trim it before the branches get too thick otherwise you won’t be able to shape it
Slow and steady wins the race
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Re: Ficus trunk chop and cutting

Postby MJL » February 10th, 2019, 7:52 am

Excellent thread Kyle, great to see your early success.

And you’d back ‘Ben’Bonsai’s advice given the tree appears to be his namesake! Just sayin’ ....


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