Hello from San Francisco, CA. I love house plants. And I need them.


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Hello from San Francisco, CA. I really only can have house plants since our tiny deck is northern exposed, underneath another deck and pretty much in a wind tunnel. I have two plants I have had for years, and that I love. One is a (I don’t know how to spell it) Scheffalera; the other is a ficus that I grew from a cutting more than 30 years ago. They have both done quite well...except my husband insisted on pruning the ficus constantly to keep it small. I’m now letting it grow as much as it wants. I did move them from the Southern exposed living room to the Northern exposed bedroom. This was a while ago, and they seemed fine. But now they are in trouble. The ficus has lost most of its leaves; and on the bottom shoots of the Scheffalera, the leaves are all drying up and falling off, including young leaves. I have some photos here. Please help!
 

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Welcome Mare. :)

The Ficus would prefer a light and sunny area away from draughts, they also dislike being moved around.

Thank you!! The ficus has come back amazingly well! I was shocked! Even though she is in a northern exposed room, she is in a window. I have lot’s of windows. The Shefalerra (sp) looks terrible. It was huge and beautiful and tall. I posted a photo of that plant when I joined in June, after it had began losing leaves. I thought it looked bad then...but now...!!!! Here are two new photos. I thought maybe I was overwatering, so I let it dry up. Leaves continued to be fragile and fall off the plant. Finally I saw the bugs (a couple of weeks ago). They are extremely tiny, black, skinny and elongated. I don‘t know what they are, but they were all over the plant, and all the leaves look bad. I cleaned every single leaf with alcohol, then sprayed water on it. I went back a couple of days ago, and there were still a few bugs. Used alcohol again, and thought I’d gotten them all. Yesterday I looked and found one bug on about every third leaf. Alcohol again. I’m afraid to look today! On a good note, I am seeing signs of new growth on the bare branches below. I’ve had this plant for about 20 years, and I love it. May I just knock the weak leaves off? Or prune it down to the bare branches? Or should I just throw it away? If I do that, do I also dispose of the soil? Any help you can give would be appreciated! Thank you so much! Mare in S.F.
 

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I'm glad to hear the Ficus has improved. :) I'm sorry, I know absolutely nothing about Schefflera's, perhaps someone else can help you.
 
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