Wednesday, October 5, 2011

The Mighty Ficus!

Snapped this shot in Casco Viejo, Panama
I thought I'd step back in time to this summer and show you the mighty ficus tree that grows in Panama.  "But what does this have to do with your tree series?"  Well this particular post serves two purposes.  One is about the root system of the tree you plant while the other is about the actual Ficus tree.  I love Ficus, but I also know my limitations.  I am not a God nor can I control the weather.  Fellow Tucsonans, do not plant this tree in your landscape.  It will freeze and die. And once it's fried, it's gone.  Take it from me.  I experimented and lost:)  Tomorrow's post is for you.  If you love Ficus, keep them in large pots in areas that are visible to you and others.  This post is for my Phoenix friends.  Awhile back, AZ Plant Lady(a true plant Goddess:) over at Ramblings from a Desert Garden around the Phoenix area wrote a great article on Ficus.  People love Ficus trees.  It's true.  They move from out of town and they want green green GREEN!  Well this tropical plant does not disappoint the Phoenix homeowner....until years later.....or during an extreme frost.  Most of my friends had to prune their trees after that nasty freeze we suffered here this past year.  Today, parts of their trees are coming back to life again. But here's the kicker.  These trees make not only nice green additions to your garden but also act as a bird refuge for our wildlife here.  Here's what's not so nice about this plant.  The roots.  They're invasive and will get into your pipes searching for water.  Even worse.  The roots spread across the ground destroying foundations and sidewalks.  Think twice before planting this mammoth in your yard...or certainly plant it far away from your home.  Many of my friends were really upset and sad that they had to remove their tree.  It was that or lose the side of their house and spend thousands on their water pipes.  "Why would people plant them?"  Click on the vid below and you'll see. Listen to the sounds and you'll understand.  Look at the shade it provides.  It's all kind of magical.  Standing beneath these giant trees, I felt happiness....and inspiration to write this post:)  Tucsonans more for us tomorrow.  I've got a tree that is similiar to the Ficus and does well here.  Homeowners....be aware of the root systems of your trees before placing them into the ground:)
video

6 comments:

  1. ....perhaps something manageable like Ficus deltoidea ....but for tree lover that's a totally different thing isn't it. I had a Ficus petiolaris once - that should do well for deserts - just make sure its roots do not touch your house or it will strangle it.

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  2. That's a superb tree. It would hate in here in the UK; it's already starting to turn cold, and we should start having frosts soon!

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  3. Thank you both for your comments and advice. The cooler weather arrived in Tucson yesterday and it's a welcome surprise:)

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  4. I've fallen in love with the Ficus genus. I just recently started some Ficus religiosa and Ficus benghalensis seeds. Then yesterday I ordered more seeds for Ficus auriculata and Ficus macrophylla. I'm crazy about figs! I'll just have to figure out how to control them as houseplants... :)

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  5. Nice sounds coming out of the tree! If your ficuses are older than 5 years old then they should not mind the frost in Phoenix... We had both experiences: lost a couple, kept a couple of them over time.

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  6. Thank you so much for the wonderful compliment and I completely agree with your views on Ficus :-)

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