House Plants/ficus tree


have had this ficus for over ten years in same place. About month ago it started shedding leaves everyday there are hand fulls. It is looking very sad. Should I try and re-pot it it is about eight ft tall and in a large pot. The leaves have pale white on them but it isn't any kind of insect or bug Please help

Hi Carol,

I need more specifics to be able to help you properly. Ficus trees are notorious for dropping lots of leaves, but for different reasons, including inadequate light, very high temperatures, failure to prune and improper watering. I would need more information to be able to determine which is the cause in this case.

A slight whitish film on Ficus leaves is caused by oxidation and it not a problem. However, if the white stuff looks like tiny bits of white cotton, then you have a mealybug infestation. If so, let me know and I will tell you how to treat them.

~Will Creed  

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Will Creed


I am the only expert in this category with professional hands-on experience and knowledge of all indoor plants. I can answer questions regarding light, water, fertilizer, repotting, pruning and humidity and temperature requirements. I can identify plant pests and provide information on safe, effective treatments. My answers are based on 35 years of professional experience and scientific research and are clear and easy to understand. I do NOT use search engines to find answers to your questions. If you read my previous posts here, you will get a good idea as to how thorough and professional my answers are.


I have over 35 years of professional indoor landscaping experience caring for plants in homes, offices, building lobbies, stores, restaurants, and other adverse environments. I have written extensively on the care of indoor plants, including a 260 page book. My specialties include Ficus trees, low light plants, repotting, pest control, and re-blooming holiday plants. Be sure to check my ratings and nominations to learn why I am the top-rated indoor plant expert. I am the only House Plant expert consistently ranked in the AllExperts Top 20.

BA, Amherst College

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