Bo Tree Culture
Answered by: Inge Poot
Question from: Kathy Rogers-Hartley
Posted on: August 15, 2001

I have a pair of bo trees I purchased last summer. I have had nominal success growing them over the winter ...they are still alive! What are their growing requirements? I have searched your data base and found 2 Q&A’s about them and also searched the internet with no useful results. I noticed that they should be re potted when they outgrow their pots. I just moved the pair of them from their own 4 inch (10 centimeter) pots into a single large 12(ish) inch (30 cm) pot. Will I ever be able to prune them to keep them in this size of a pot? I don’t mind separating them, but I don’t want it to outgrow the house. I’ve never had more than a few leaves at the top of a 12 inch high stalk, so I hesitate to prune. Anyway, just tell me everything I will ever need to know about these plants, and I’ll store it away in my computer for future reference.

The most useful tip would be to treat it like a Ficus benjamina. It is much like it but except for a long terminal projection on the leaves. It herefore does not like being moved around in place or orientation and will respond to such moves with a liberal drop of leaves! Both start out as epiphytes in nature and then grow roots to the ground that later turn into trunks. They like a humusy well-draining but moist soil and respond well to fertilization. They find it hard to adjust from the dim light of a house to full sun out of doors, but they love a summer out of doors in the shade. Water them well while out of doors and take indoors before the nights get too close to freezing. Keep in a south window during the winter and do not fiddle with their orientation once you have placed them in their winter spot. Water well to help them adjust to the lower humidity indoors.

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