Ficus ginseng trees (Ficus microcarpa) are beautiful, low-maintenance indoor trees that are rich in meaning. They’re especially good as beginner bonsai trees. But are Ficus ginseng trees safe for your pets? In this article, we’ll explain if Ficus ginseng trees are pet friendly.
Are Ficus Ginseng Plants Pet-Friendly?
Ficus ginseng trees are popular indoor trees with attractive pot-bellied trunks and waxy green leaves. These trees are native to parts of tropical Southeast Asia and Australia. Indoors, Ficus ginseng trees can grow between 1 and 2 feet tall, making them ideal for bonsai.
Unfortunately, Ficus ginseng trees aren’t pet-friendly because they’re moderately toxic to cats and dogs. Ficus ginseng trees are also toxic to humans if ingested. This is true of most types of Ficus trees that are cultivated as indoor plants.
Ficus ginseng trees are toxic due to the sap contained in both the stems and leaves. If one of your pets ingests part of a Ficus ginseng, they may experience various stomach problems. Ficus ginseng sap can also cause skin irritation if your pets come into contact with it.
If you think that your pet has ingested part of a Ficus ginseng plant, look for the following symptoms:
- Loss of appetite
- Excessive drooling
While the effects are not usually fatal, it’s always best to contact your vet and get their advice. The unpleasant symptoms should pass within a few hours. However, if your pet’s condition worsens, make an emergency appointment with your vet.
How to Keep Your Pets Safe Around Your Ficus Ginseng
If you have both pets and Ficus ginseng plants in your home, it’s important to keep them separate. There are several ways to keep your pets away from Ficus ginseng plants.
The easiest solution is to either put the tree out of reach. You can also keep it in a room that your pets rarely go into. Always keep the door shut if you can (but you’ll also want to be considerate of your ficus ginseng’s light requirements). For more, see our in-depth guide on where to position ficus ginseng plants for optimal care.
You can also use products such as pet repellent sprays to keep your pets and plants separate. Citronella is a good spray to use. If you decide to use a spray, make sure that it’s safe for your Ficus ginseng tree as well.
If you don’t want to use a spray, you can make a homemade version using some lemon juice. You can also place citrus fruit peels around your Ficus ginseng. Many pets don’t like the smell of citrus, so it can work as a deterrent. Lemon juice is also perfectly safe for your Ficus ginseng.
Pets usually investigate plants like Ficus ginseng if they’re bored. Providing your pet with plenty of toys to keep them occupied can keep them away from your plants.
As popular as Ficus ginseng trees are, they’re also moderately toxic to pets and humans. If your pet ingests part of a Ficus ginseng plant, they will experience stomach problems or skin irritation. The symptoms should pass after a few hours, but seek advice from a vet if your pet’s condition worsens.
Andrew is the Editorial Director at Petal Republic. He holds a BSc degree in Plant Sciences and has trained professionally at leading floristry schools in London and Paris. In amongst overseeing a global editorial team, Andrew's a passionate content creator around all things flowers, floral design, gardening, and houseplants.
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