The Creeping Fig is commonly known as climbing fig or ficus pumila. Originally from East Asia, it is a species of flowering plant in the mulberry family.
It grows naturally in some regions of the southeastern and south-central United States.
Creeping Fig is a skilled climber and can withstand severe pruning better than sensitive plants such as English ivy. It’s a cute little houseplant that I love. It is one of the smaller ficus species.
The Ficus genus contains over 850 different species, many of which have gained popularity as indoor plants for good reason. It is a great and moderately hardy houseplant that is attractive and easy to grow. Can tolerate a wide range of different environments and some degree of mild neglect.
Creeping Fig Plant
The Creeping fig is a 2.5-4 m tall, woody, evergreen liana. Creeping figs are also often referred to as climbing figs which are primarily grown outdoors as climbing vines. Ficus pumila is also grown as an ornamental houseplant
Compared to the mature leaves produced as the plant matures, juvenile foliage is significantly smaller and thinner. The ovate, cordate, asymmetrical leaves have opposite veins.
It climbs trees, rocks and other structures up to a height of four meters or more while crawling or behaving like a liana. It has been awarded the Garden Merit Award by the Royal Horticultural Society.
Creeping Fig Plant Overview
- Botanical Name: Ficus Pumila
- Common Name: Climbing Fig, Creeping Fig
- Family: Moraceae
- Plant Type: Evergreen Perennial, Vining plant
- Mature Size: 10-15 Ft
- Sun Exposure: Partial
- Soil Type: Well-drained
- Soil pH: Acidic, Neutral
- Bloom Time: Rarely flowers indoors
- Flower Color: Green
- Hardiness Zones: 9-11 (USDA)
- Native Area: Asia
Creeping Fig Plant Species
Creeping figs come in several varieties. Take a look at a selection of the most popular varieties
(1) F. pumila ‘Variegata’: The name of this cultivar alludes to its lighter-colored, bordered variegated leaves.
(2) F. pumila ‘Minima’: Its leaves are smaller than other varieties, making this variety suitable for indoor use.
(3) F. pumila ‘Curly’: It thrives in hanging containers where its wrinkled tendrils can trail down the edges.
How To Grow Creeping Fig Plant
Choosing the right location for creeping figs is important. If you are growing outdoors, choose a spot with some shade. They thrive as houseplants in cooler areas. Use the right soil When planting outdoors, make sure the soil is well-drained and has a slightly acidic pH.
During the first growing season, water your plants regularly. Before attachments, allow for new growth. They can reach a length of three to six feet. If you need to make room for additional plants, cut them back as needed. Avoid pruning in fall and winter when the plant’s growth rate is slow. Instead, prune in early spring when new growth begins on the plant.
Pruning is an important component of creeping fig maintenance. Spray its vines once a month to control their aggressive growth. When trimming, be careful to avoid removing more than one-third of the plant at a time as this will damage the plant.
Indoor plants will also cling and climb walls and other buildings if you’re not careful. Spring is the best time to do significant pruning on both outdoor and indoor plants.
Stem cuttings are used to propagate creeping figs. Pick a branch from a healthy plant that has new leaves growing on it, and using garden shears or a pair of shears, cut off a 6- to 8-inch section of the branch. Cut 3 inches from the bottom of the creeping fig and remove the leaves.
Place the cutting wound side down in a glass or container filled with filtered water. Change the water once a week and check the stem cuttings while emptying out the old water.
The stem cuttings are ready to plant in the ground when the roots begin to grow 2 inches long. Maintain a consistent watering schedule for a plants after planting. It is time to transplant you creeping fig to a new location as it begins to grow and form strong roots.
Creeping Fig Plant Care
Optimum warm, moist air, plenty of humidity and strong indirect light are essential for a thriving fig plant. It’s important to keep in mind that even the most healthy and well-kept plants can only survive in their pots for a short period of time because their basic structures are designed for aggressive and spreading growth.
Propagate creeping fig plants every other year if you want them to live longer than their normal indoor lifespan. If you decide to grow creeping figs in the outdoor garden, keep in mind that you will need to clip them regularly to prevent them from encroaching on surrounding plants.
Soil And Fertilizer
Creeping fig plants may grow in a range of soil types as long as the soil is well-drained. Regarding the soil types employed for its growth, the plant is quite adaptable.
Most aerated potting soil mixes work well for creeping figs. They also prefer organic peat-based potting soil. Use an NPK 5-5-5 or 10-10-10-balanced liquid fertilizer to fertilize creeping figs once a month in the spring and summer. You may speed up the growth of a creeping fig by using the correct fertilizers.
Light And Water
Creeping figs in gardens have strong roots and require minimal irrigation except during times of drought. Once grown, plants draw more water from the soil and require less water.
Creeping figs grow rapidly in summer. When the temperature is high, give out more water. It needs to be watered once every two weeks during the winter months when the temperature drops. If it is dry, spraying will make the air more humid.
Bright indirect light is preferred for creeping figs. Indoor potted plant leaves can burn in direct sunlight, hot climates or insufficient ventilation. Place it in a location with moderately strong sunlight during the winter months to ensure vibrantly colored foliage. It thrives in low light areas and tolerates shade.
Temperature And Humidity
Creeping figs require a humidity level of at least 60%. If you live in an arid region and want to grow creeping figs you may need to provide the plants with an artificial supply of moisture. The same applies to indoor creeping figs as it does to outdoor vines: humidity is a critical ingredient.
Creeping figs do best in temperatures between 65 and 75 degrees Fahrenheit or 18 and 24 degrees Celsius. The environment with a moderate climate is good for growing creeping fig.
Plants find it difficult to thrive in this range during the cold winter months. At such times you can always grow the plant indoors.
Pests And Diseases
Creeping figs thrive in moderate levels of direct sunlight, but too much sunlight can dull the vibrant green color of the leaves. Root rot can easily damage creeping fig plants, so it’s best to avoid overwatering the plant and choose a container and soil that allows for good drainage. Watering the leaves can cause fungal problems.
Aphids, mealybugs, scale, and whiteflies are just a few of the frequent indoor pests that can damage creeping figs. If possible, spot the infestation right away, and treat the plant immediately with a horticultural oil such as neem oil.