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Ficus Trees

Q.overwatering ficus benjamina

Zone Brussels, Belgium (zip B-1030) | Anonymous added on January 27, 2018 | Answered

I have two ficus benjamina in very similar positions and they have been quite happy there for over 18 months. Recently I noticed that one of them wasn’t absorbing its water. I stopped water, but the earth around the plant remained overwet. I have now taken it out of the pot, the earth is still completely wet … and there is a very strong rotting smell, maybe sulpurous. I wear silver rings and when stripping away some of the earth I noticed that the rings had discolored, which I believe is the effect of sulphur on silver. My plan is to repot … should I strip away all the remaining earth? Any ideas on why this plant is suffering like this, so that I can change its regime? It’s very puzzling as the other plant seems fine.

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Answered on January 28, 2018

It does sounds like you have root rot fungus in your plant's soil. In this case, it would be a good idea to completely remove the old soil, wash the roots of the plant with plain water and wash the pot with a 10% bleach solution then allowing it to dry completely before replanting the plant. This should help kill the fungus that is causing the root rot.

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