Am I overwatering my ficus?


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Hi all! First time poster. I bought a healthy ficus Benjamina and placed it next to a north facing window.



for the first month. It only lost 2-3 leaves but recently it’s been dropping leaves like crazy. I watered the plant in full before I left for a week long trip and when I came back there were a bunch of leaves on the floor. I insterted a moisture probe and deep into the pot it reads medium. Here are some pictures of the leaves:
image.jpg

At this point I assumed I overwatered it before I left. I held off on watering and now parts of the soil read ‘moist’ while others read dry. Leaves are still dropping like crazy.

should I go ahead and water my ficus? I’m not sure whether I’ve been over or under watering.

image.jpg
 
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Right -- however, I've only moved the plant once when I moved into my new house and also once outside to take this picture and water it (tried watering outside the first time today.)

Using a moisture probe tells me the soil nearer to the roots is moist but the soil near the surface is dry.

Should I water?
 
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Welcome to the forum @aborodin :) - if I may say so, your ficus plant looks very healthy to me, and I think that you have no problems really. With watering, the best thing is to water it a bit more when there is bright light (which these plants like) and a bit less whenever it is dull. Another reason for the leaf loss could possibly be if the roots need a bit more space, so maybe you could check it is not root bound.
 
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I had one for 20 years. if you have it outside for spring/summer/fall experience, then you bring it in, it will lose leaves. Just hang in there. I would let mine, when inside, have a really good dry out, then give it a gallon of water. Mine was very tall, about 20 foot. Did get tired of it 5 years ago, put it outside on the deck and let it die in the winter.
 
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Don't be sad @Tetters , there comes a time in folks life where you want to throw stuff out. I am at that stage. Cleaning out bags of stuff. taking boxes to donation centers. Letting certain house plants die. The ficus really does not bring joy, does not flower, etc. my opinion. Have other houseplants. I have lots of garden books would love to send to someone, no one wants them.
 
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Don't be sad @Tetters , there comes a time in folks life where you want to throw stuff out. I am at that stage. Cleaning out bags of stuff. taking boxes to donation centers. Letting certain house plants die. The ficus really does not bring joy, does not flower, etc. my opinion. Have other houseplants. I have lots of garden books would love to send to someone, no one wants them.
I didn`t really think that the OP would want to know that while they are working hard to keep their plant healthy someone else would want to willingly just let any plant die - seems pretty sad to me!
 
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I had Ficus for thirty years in pots and found they prefer starvation. They were never fed, and watered once every two to three months. They also like to be pot bound. As said above they don't like being moved and prefer being in a light, draught free position. Your plant would prefer a south or west facing window.

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Wow, thanks all for the replies! I love this forum already.

My only light comes from a North facing window and I put the ficus right next to it. It gets plenty of indirect light.

Per everyone’s advice I didn’t water it and will wait until soil moisture levels read critical before I start again.

I haven’t lost leaves in the past few days — here’s hoping trend continues!


I had one for 20 years. if you have it outside for spring/summer/fall experience, then you bring it in, it will lose leaves. Just hang in there. I would let mine, when inside, have a really good dry out, then give it a gallon of water. Mine was very tall, about 20 foot. Did get tired of it 5 years ago, put it outside on the deck and let it die in the winter.
:oops: How do you move a 20 foot tall house plant back and forth into the house?
 

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Wow, thanks all for the replies! I love this forum already.

My only light comes from a North facing window and I put the ficus right next to it. It gets plenty of indirect light.

Per everyone’s advice I didn’t water it and will wait until soil moisture levels read critical before I start again.

I haven’t lost leaves in the past few days — here’s hoping trend continues!




:oops: How do you move a 20 foot tall house plant back and forth into the house?
we only did it at the 10 foot level, then we stopped, it stayed inside. the last time it went out took three of us to get it to the deck. pot first then the branches, they are kind of flexible through the door.
 
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I didn`t really think that the OP would want to know that while they are working hard to keep their plant healthy someone else would want to willingly just let any plant die - seems pretty sad to me!
Not really, a gardener knows when it is time to say "good-bye" to a plant. its a lesson for all that it is OK to get rid of a plant. Even my outside ones, which I have many. if it does not work after a certain time, it gets tossed.
 
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Not really, a gardener knows when it is time to say "good-bye" to a plant. its a lesson for all that it is OK to get rid of a plant. Even my outside ones, which I have many. if it does not work after a certain time, it gets tossed.
And why would the OP want to know how and why YOU killed your plant - they want to know how to nurture theirs, not cast it aside :mooning:
 
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