I have a Ficus tree in my Living Room. I bought it a long time ago; unbraided the funky stems, repotted it, and it grows a little every year. It drops leaves in the Fall, and grows new ones in the Spring, but even though it fills the corner very nicely, it is a very uneventful plant at the best of times. (Unfortunately, it resists any type of neglect, and it chooses to ignore my bored looks when I sigh over its predictability). I even put fairy lights on it at Christmas, wanting to like it, but we both know it is not my favorite plant in the house.
At least Fifty percent of the homes I visit have fake Ficus plants. The idea is good; they add height, and a splash of dark green without the maintenance, but they all look exactly the same. I promise, I am not going to diss artificial plants anymore (there are too many of them around for me to keep protesting) but with a small amount of effort, your fake Ficus can become a real, decorative part of your home, instead of some wicker-clad, dusty accessory.
So, for everyone who is holding onto their fake, and telling me they can’t grow plants inside, here are some ways to make it look a whole lot better…..
– Wipe the leaves and stems with a damp cloth to remove dust etc. – Treat it like a real plant. Buy a large pot (at least as large as the basket it came in) and a plant saucer for it. – Remove it from the basket, and take out as much filler as you can. – Re-pot it into the larger pot, with potting soil. (If it feels too light, add some rocks, or a brick, to the bottom so that it doesn’t tip over). – Put it in a corner, or by a window (somewhere that makes sense for a living tree). – Take care of it; wipe it with a cloth now and again, and check the soil. – If it starts to fade, and look sad or shabby, take a deep breath, say good-bye and throw it away.
* Photograph from Singapore Florist online shop
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