by Jerry Meislik
Ficus leaves can show damage for many reasons. Damage can be caused by mechanical injuries such as during shipping or in severe winds. Spotting of leaves can be from insects like spider mites, scale insects etc. I recently discovered yet another cause for leaf damage.
The leaf shown is from a Ficus destruens. I am experimenting with this species to see if it will work as a bonsai material. The plants in the cup are rooted cuttings and the leaves are severely spotted.
The damage is from spraying the leaves with a fertilizer solution. It is often recommended to spray leaves with a dilute fertilizer solution to aid in speeding plant growth. The fertilizer concentration I used is not toxic to most of my figs sprayed on the leaves or used as a soil drench. However, several species seem to be intolerant of this concentration of fertilizer.
Before using a foliar type of feeding process. Test your plants to see if they are sensitive to this type of fertilization or not.