There are hundreds of varieties of the Ficus, but the most popular one for Bonsai is the Ficus Ginseng, which has a thick, pot-bellied trunk, similar to the Ginseng roots and has oval, dark green leaves.
Most ficus Bonsai trees can produce aerial roots in their natural habitat, which are often presented in appealing Bonsai creations with many aerial root pillars or root over rock styles. To enable aerial root growth in our homes a humidity of nearly 100% must be achieved artificially. You can use a glass cover or fish tank to achieve this. Aerial roots grow down vertically from the branches and when they reach the soil they develop into strong pillar-like trunks. In tropical climates a single tree can become a forest-like structure and cover an enormous expanse.
The leaves of most Bonsai ficus species have special pointed tips from which the rainwater drips off. The trunks have a smooth grey bark in most cases. Typical for all fig Bonsai species is their milky latex sap, which will leak from wounds or cuts. Ficus Ginseng Bonsai plants are poisonous for pets, it can be especially dangerous if they eat the leaves. The trees should be placed out of the pets’ reach.
The ficus Bonsai tree is an indoor Bonsai which cannot endure frost. It can be kept outside in summer, if temperatures are above 59 degrees and it needs lots of light – full sun is ideal, in the house as well as outside if the tree is exposed to the ultraviolet radiation gradually or if it is defoliated before placing the tree outside. A very shady position is unfavorable. The temperature should be kept relatively constant.
The Ficus should be watered normally, which means it should be given water generously whenever the soil gets slightly dry. The Bonsai Ficus can tolerate occasional over- or under-watering. Soft water with room temperature is perfect. The warmer the position of the fig during winter the more water it needs. If it overwinters at a cooler place it only needs to be kept slightly moist.
Figs can endure low humidity due to their thick, waxy leaves, but they prefer a higher humidity and need extremely high humidity to develop aerial roots. Daily misting to maintain humidity is advised, don’t overdo this otherwise fungal problems can appear.