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Wisconsin's Tropical Gardens

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FICUS maclellandii 'Alii'

With origins in Thailand in elevations from sea level to 1,600 feet, this plant was brought to Hawaii and named 'Alii' which means "Chief". It is more closely related to Ficus benjamina than the other 40 or so Ficus species that are commonly grown for house plants. However, it grows about 25% slower and displays foliage that is quite different than Ficus benjamina. Its relatively thick leaves are long and narrow, growing from 3 inches to 10 inches long. New growth is sometimes tinted bronze and later matures to a deep, rich green.

This plant is more durable and easier to grow than the typical Ficus benjamina. It lacks the finickiness and tendency to shed leaves. It tolerates lower light conditions and more erratic watering far better than the benjaminas.

LIGHT: Provide filtered sunlight or bright indirect light. This transaltes to a bright east, west or south-facing window.

TEMPERATURE: This plant prefers a temperature range of 55° to 75°, although exposure to lower temperatures above 45° is tolerated for short periods of time.

WATER: Allow the soil to dry out between waterings. When watering, water thoroughly and completely. This may mean watering once and then again an hour later as the dry soil begins to absorb water. Do not allow the plant to sit in water.

This plant is sometimes available in 8" pots, more often in 10" pots or larger specimen sizes.