Ficus Bonsai Pruning

The Ficus bonsai, also known as the Fig, including the Weeping Fig and the Chinese Banyan, is an absolutely gorgeous tree for a houseplant. However, it grows very quickly and tends to grow too tall and wide sometimes, thus it requires regular and careful pruning to be made. Because some species grow large leaves as well, leaf pruning can be done to reduce the leaf size.

You can more or less prune your ficus bonsai tree all year round for minor pruning, but by far the best time to be doing the heavy pruning is after new growth has stopped. And because new growth happens for most trees in spring or early summer, late summer or early fall would be the best time to do it. You can prune the dead branches or the broken ones at any time. You can do it as well in winter, before heavy growth starts, but only if you have no other option. Keep the first option as preferential.

You can gently prune the new growth by pinching throughout the growing season. Prune back to 2-4 leaves after 6-10 leaves have grown.

You need to periodically examine your tree, to see where exactly it needs to be controlled, if it’s the height or the width (or both) that need to be adjusted.

The place where leaves or twigs join the stem are called a node. You need to look for this node when you want to prune your ficus bonsai, because you want to cut the branch just before it. But remember to always leave at least one node on a branch, otherwise new growth might stop there. This is a good thing to remember if you are pruning your fig bonsai and you want to eliminate a branch: just cut it close to the trunk, so that no nodes are left on it. If you remove a larger branch, it is very important to seal the wound with a cut paste.