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Can somebody identify this plant? I received it for my Dad's passing and it isn't doing so well. I just moved it and it may be in shock.

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  • How much/what frequency are you watering? How much light does it get? Is it near a door, or HVAC vent? I have no idea what it is haha (Ficus longifolia variety? idk). – J. Musser Feb 15 '16 at 3:43
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Ficus maclellandii, Narrow-leaf Fig or Banana Leaf Ficus. One of the best indoor and patio Ficus for ornamental use, with several similar-looking cultivars, including 'Alii' and 'Amstel King'. In the wilds of Southeast Asia and Northern Australia, this tree can grow up to 50 feet or more. But the cultivars available in most nurseries are mere dwarfs of this species and are relatively small trees, up to about 12 feet tall. Narrow-leaf figs have lanceolate leaves that are thick and plastic-like, up to six inches long (resembling elongated, thick Ficus benjamina leaves) and one inch to two inches wide depending on the cultivar.

Positive identification will be to make a tiny break in the leaf and watch for white sticky sap which is an Id for all members of the fig family.

The main problem this plant has had is low light. These plants are tropical and grow outdoors in full sun for the best appearance.

I recommend cutting the dead stems back to a major branch and moving to a high light situation. New growth should start within a month. Fertilizer is not needed at the moment until you see new growth.

Wikipedia and my own experience notes that this plant has been sold under various names but the long leaves are the key identification feature.

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I bought this plant for my house a few months ago. Over the winter it dropped 80% of its leaves and I was going to throw it out. Instead I cut back all the old branches that didn’t have any leaves on them and aerated the soil using chopsticks or a pencil. The next week I had loads of new leaves growing at the top of the plant and a month later the bottom as well. I water it once every ten days or so with about 1/2 - 3/4 of a pint. And I don’t move it in the house. I hope my story helps and that your plant comes back to life!

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