It’s the middle of summer and you walk out to your front yard to find that your ficus tree is on its last legs. The leaves are wilted and brown, the branches are drooping, and there doesn’t seem to be any life left in it. Don’t worry, we’re here to help! In this blog post, we will discuss how to save a dying ficus tree.
How to Save a Dying Ficus Tree?
Fiscus trees usually die due to incorrect watering, lack of sunlight, nutrient deficiencies, diseases, and pests. If you think your ficus tree is dying, the first step is to try to save it!
If you’re not sure what’s wrong with your ficus tree, the best course of action is to take a sample of the leaves to your local nursery or gardening store. They will be able to help you diagnose the problem and recommend a course of action.
Once you know what’s wrong with your ficus tree, you can take steps to correct the problem. If your tree is not getting enough water, make sure to water it deeply and regularly. If it’s not getting enough sunlight, try moving it to a sunny spot. And if there are pests or diseases attacking your tree, you can treat them with the appropriate pesticides or fungicides.
I will now go through each of these problems in more detail so that you can save your dying ficus tree!
1. Incorrect Watering
If you are watering your ficus tree too much or too little, it will start to die. Ficus trees need to be watered deeply and regularly, about once a week. But if you were like me, you tend to think that if a little water is good, more water is better. This couldn’t be further from the truth!
Too much water will actually suffocate the roots of your ficus tree and cause the leaves to turn yellow and drop off. Plus, root rot can set in, which will eventually kill your tree if you don’t take corrective action.
On the other hand, not enough water can cause drooping leaves, wilting, and eventually death. So make sure you’re watering your ficus tree deeply and regularly, about once a week.
The best way to test if your fiscus tree needs water is to stick your finger in the soil. If the top inch or so is dry, it’s time to water your tree. A moisture meter is also a good investment if you want to take the guesswork out of watering your ficus tree.
2. Lack of Sunlight
Just like all plants, ficus trees need sunlight to grow and thrive. If your tree is not getting enough sunlight, it will start to die. The leaves will turn yellow and drop off, and the branches will become spindly and weak.
If you think your ficus tree isn’t getting enough sunlight, try moving it to a sunnier spot. Make sure the spot you choose gets at least six hours of sunlight a day. You can also try using grow lights to supplement the sunlight if moving your ficus tree is not an option.
Be careful though – too much sunlight can also be harmful to your ficus tree. If the leaves start to turn brown and curl up, it’s getting too much sun. Try moving it to a spot that gets less sunlight or providing some shade with a sheer curtain or cloth.
3. Nutrient Deficiencies
Ficus trees need nutrients to grow and thrive. If your tree is not getting enough nutrients, it may wilt, the leaves may turn yellow and drop off, and eventually, the tree will die.
There are a few ways to make sure your ficus tree is getting enough nutrients. The first way is to fertilize it regularly with a balanced fertilizer. You can also try top dressing your tree with compost or manure. It’s generally regarded that the ideal NPK ratio for a ficus is 3-1-2. This is because ficus is a nitrogen-loving plant.
Other nutrient deficiencies that can kill your ficus tree include phosphorus, potassium, and magnesium. These can all cause similar symptoms like yellowing leaves, stunted growth, and leaf drop.
If you suspect your tree has a deficiency of one of these nutrients, you can get a soil test done to confirm it. You can then take corrective action by adding the appropriate fertilizer or amendments to your soil.
The ficus tree is vulnerable to many pests that can cause it to die. These include aphids, whiteflies, spider mites, and mealybugs. All of these pests can suck the sap out of your tree, causing the leaves to turn yellow and drop off.
To get rid of pests on your ficus tree, you can use a variety of methods. You can start by spraying the tree with water to knock the pests off. You can also use insecticidal soap or neem oil. If these methods don’t work, you can try more aggressive pesticides like pyrethrin or malathion.
Be sure to follow the instructions on the pesticide label carefully. You don’t want to harm your ficus tree or the environment more than you have to.
Ficus trees are also susceptible to several diseases that can kill them. These include fungal diseases like anthracnose and root rot, as well as viral diseases like the ficus mosaic virus.
The best way to prevent disease is to practice good sanitation and avoid wounding your ficus tree. If you do get disease, you can try to treat it with fungicides or antivirals. However, these treatments are not always effective and may not save your tree.
Neem oil is a great fungicide that can help prevent and treat disease in ficus trees. It’s also safe for humans and the environment, which is always a bonus.
If your ficus tree is dying, don’t despair – there are several things you can do to save it! Start by making sure it’s getting enough water, sunlight, and nutrients. You can also check for pests and diseases and take steps to control them. With a little care, you should be able to revive your ficus tree in no time!
Do you have a dying ficus tree? What are you doing to try and save it? Let us know in the comments below!
Tim is an avid gardener from the UK. He was the founder of PlantCarer.com from 2021 to Sep 2023. He sold PlantCarer.com to Aaron. He has since started his own business called Seed To Supper, which provides new gardeners all the materials you need in a box (pots, seeds, compost and instructions) to grow your own delicious and nutritious vegetables and herbs from start to finish – no garden required.