Indian Laurel Fig is popular for its lush green color, dense foliage, heat tolerance, and high adaptability to pruning and shaping.
Plant in well drained, moderately fertile, sandy or loamy soil in full sun. In hotter inland gardens, partial shade is ok. Indian Laurel Fig is extremely heat tolerant as long as it gets ample water during heatwaves. Protect from temperatures above 110℉, especially when young. Hardy to 30℉ and grows best in USDA zones 10-11. Protect from frost. Ficus nitida may shed its leaves due to cold temperatures but will quickly recover once the weather warms up.
Water regularly during warm temperatures. Allow the soil to slightly dry out in between waterings. Less water is required once established.
Keep plants pruned to maintain desired shape and size. Prune a third or less of the Indian Laurel. Pruning more than a third all at once may result in damage to the Ficus.
The average preferred height of Indian Laurel hedge is 5 to 10 feet. The height is determined by pruning and environmental factors.
The minimum width of a Ficus nitida hedge is typically 3 ft. but can be greater depending on pruning technique and frequency.
Spacing of Ficus nitida columns for a hedge is dependent on the plant size and the immediate desired fullness. 2-3 ft. is a general range recommended for spacing. The spacing is “on-center” of one plant to the center of the next plant.
For an “instant hedge”, plant the Indian Laurel columns closer to each other where the plants are almost touching. See recommended spacing by container size below:
24” box or 25-gallon tub can be planted at 36 inches on-center.
15-gallon or 10-gallon container can be planted at 24-28 inches on-center.
5-gallon or 3-gallon container can be planted at 16 inches on-center.