Ficus Benjamina Care Sheet

Common name: Ben Fig tree, ficus, fig tree, figgy.

Scientific name: Ficus benjamina.

Lighting requirements: Moderate-bright light. Ficus benjamina does well with some direct light, but may scorch if left in direct sun. Ficus benjamina does well in an east window, or set back 2-3 feet from a south-facing window.

Watering guide: Ficus benjamina can dry out a little between waterings. Never let the plant sit in it’s own leachate. Check the top inch of soil between waterings–if it is dry your Ficus benjamina could use a drink.

Heat and humidity requirements: Ficus benjamina grows well at high temperatures. It will survive at temperatures as low as 60 degrees Fahrenheit, but will not produce new growth. Ficus benjamina enjoys humidity levels above 50%, and would definitely appreciate a humidity tray.

Soil requirements: Premium potting soil with 1/4 added perlite.

Fertilization tips: Feed your Ficus benjamina monthly during the growing season with a balanced 10-10-10 houseplant fertilizer. Cut feeding schedule in half during the winter months. Stop feeding all together during winter if your plant lives below 68 degrees Fahrenheit.

Propagation: Ficus benjaminas are easily propagated by taking stem and tip cuttings. These can be rooted in water or standard potting soil. Larger plants can also be propagated by air layering.

Troubleshooting: Ficus benjamina is notorious for dis-liking change. Don’t be surprised if you see some leaf-drop after moving your plant from one place to another. Ficus benjamina also loves heat and does best in temperatures consistently above 70 degrees Fahrenheit. Ficus benjamina is very responsive to pinching and hard pruning and is often used as a tropical bonsai specimen.


Two Ficus benjaminas that were rooted as cuttings


A stressed Ficus benjamina being repotted


A Ficus benjamina being trained as bonsai