Ok, today I picked up an Alii Ficus. Thing is, I spotted this fella just before it became dumpster fodder. I told the lady in the greenhouse that I could probably save it, so she let me have it for nothing.
Here's the scene: It's in a tree form, about 4 feet tall. It isn't very full, because a lot of leaves have dropped, but, what caught my eye is that it has some new growth starting. The roots, well, long story short, they haven't been properly pruned in ages. There were several large roots, between 1 and 1.5" in diameter, obviously crowding the 1 gallon pot it was in. There is a good amount of feeder roots at the top of the root ball, and a few medium size roots as well. The tree has good form, with a small amount of dead twigs in it.
Here's what I did: I cleaned ALL of the soggy soil from the rootball. Then, I proceded to cut out all large roots, and any medium ones with not much for feeder roots attached. I did leave a few roots that are larger than I'd like, but they had to stay in order to not remove more than 1/3 of the root ball. I potted the plant in the 5-1-1 mix, because I plan to repot next spring, to cut out more of the roots that are bigger then ideal. I then clipped out all dead twigs, gave it a shower to remove the dust, and placed it in the corner between an east and south window, where it's bright, but not being pounded by direct sun.
So, anyone have any experience with the Alii Ficus, and is it a pretty tough plant that will beable to recooperate from this? Hopefully, I get a nice plant out of this deal, and am not wasting my time. I value everyone's thoughts and opinions, so please feel free to chime in.