Beautiful shrubs and trees in the genus Schefflera are distinguished by leaf clusters that resemble umbrellas and are known for their beauty. In fact, the most common species kept as houseplants, Schefflera actinophylla, and Schefflera arboricola, are referred to as umbrella trees and dwarf umbrella trees, respectively.
Schefflera is a tropical plant that is native to South Asia and some regions of Australia, which is part of the reason it thrives as an indoor plant. Since so many tropical houseplants evolved to flourish under dense tree canopies, they frequently adapt to indoor lighting conditions fairly well.
They’re a great plant to try if you’re just starting to get the hang of houseplants and want to branch out because they’re also known for being fairly easygoing.
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How To Care For Schefflera？
Soil And Potting
Put your Schefflera in a pot with well-draining, slightly acidic loam soil. Use a pot with drainage holes, please!
Repot your plants every year or two, or whenever the soil becomes too compact and the roots become confined in the pot.
These plants don’t like to grow in soggy soil. Give the soil a good, thorough soak when it has almost completely dried out.
This means that as the plant grows, you will need to water it more frequently, especially in the summer when the soil dries out more quickly. Instead of keeping to a schedule during the winter, make sure to cut back.
We advise investing in a moisture meter and watering when it displays a 1 or 2.
Indirect, bright sunlight is preferred by Schefflera plants. Your plant will flourish in a window that faces east. It will also work if you put it close to a south or west-facing window, but not directly in the sun. The leaves will be burned by direct, hot sunlight! For beginners, Schefflera care is advised because of this.
Temperature And Humidity
The high 50s to low 70s Fahrenheit, also known as room temperature, are ideal for this plant’s growth. Generally speaking, keep it away from heaters, vents, drafts, etc., to avoid freezing or frying the leaves.
Schefflera prefers a little humidity because it is a tropical plant, so if your area is dry, you might want to install a humidifier nearby. Smaller plants can also benefit from a humidity tray.
Schefflera can grow up to 10 feet tall indoors, so you might need to prune it to keep it under control.
On the other hand, you can pinch off the ends of the main branches to promote additional branching. To prevent the potential spread of infection, use clean shears and wear gloves. The skin can become irritated by Scheffler’s sap!
Of course, to keep your plant healthy, be sure to remove any dead branches and leaves as needed.
When the plant is growing in the spring and summer, fertilize frequently. In the winter, reduce fertilizing by half or even stop altogether.
So that you won’t have to remember a fertilizing schedule (we can never remember either! ), we recommend Indoor Plant Food with every watering during the growing season.).
Types Of Schefflera
Of the many species in the Schefflera genus, two are common houseplants:
- Schefflera actinophylla: This most common Schefflera has oval leaves that grow up to ten inches from a central stalk. Outdoor specimens can grow to be about 50 feet tall, but indoor potted specimens typically top out at 15 feet.
- S. arboricola: It is a variegated variety of this plant with creamy blotches on its leaves; this smaller version, popular in home gardens, has one- to two-inch leaves that grow in tight clusters. Although indoor plants are typically kept to a height of no more than six feet, they can grow outdoors as high as 25 feet. Popular cultivars include “Dazzle,” which has nearly white leaves, “Gold Capella,” which is yellow and green, “Trinette,” which is white and cream, and “Dwarf,” which has dark green leaves and only reaches a height of four feet.
It’s best to propagate Schefflera in the spring: By doing this, you produce new plants and prevent your current plant from becoming overly bushy. Schefflera can be propagated by cuttings.
- Remove all but four or five leaves from the top of the stem by cutting off a six-inch section of the stem at a 45-degree angle with sharp pruners.
- Before inserting the cut end into a potting soil-filled container, dip the cut end in the rooting hormone.
- The pot should be placed in bright indirect light after being covered with a loosely sealed plastic bag to keep in humidity.
- Every day, check the container to make sure the soil is still moist, and water as needed. By gently tugging on the stem, you can check for the emergence of roots.
- In about a month, if roots have developed, you can take the plastic bag off and continue growing the new plant. Use a new cutting and try again if roots don’t form.
Potting And Repotting Schefflera
Repot the plants every year or as needed; if they have outgrown their containers, they require new soil and a larger pot. (By extending the time between repottings and allowing plants to become somewhat root-bound, you can slow their rate of growth and keep them from growing too large.
If you choose to report Schefflera, remove it from its container and gently loosen up the roots; it might help to soak them in water. To report a plant, choose a larger, drainage-holed container and fill it with a peaty, well-drained soil mixture.
Common Pests & Plant Diseases
Both bacterial leaf spots and Alternaria leaf spots affect Schefflera. Avoid overhead watering, avoid watering in the evening, and if these watering practices are ineffective, use a copper fungicide to treat these diseases.
Indoors, Schefflera are prone to problems with aphids, which leave a honeydew excretion that leads to sooty mold; treat for aphids with a spray of insecticidal soap. Mealybugs, spider mites, and scale insects are just a few of the pests that the plant is vulnerable to outdoors.
Common Problems With Schefflera
Schefflera is a low-maintenance plant, but sometimes your plant can exhibit some problems. Here’s how to figure out what’s wrong.
Brown Spots On Leaves
Underwatering is likely the cause for spots on your Schefflera. In that case, give your plant more water throughout the growing season. The best course of action is to deeply water the plant and then wait until the soil is completely dry before giving it another deep watering.
Overwatering is often the case when your Schefflera’s leaves turn yellow. See if it helps to water less. If not, you should move your plant to a brighter area as it may not be getting enough light.
Calling one of the Ambius designers should be taken into consideration if you want to incorporate the Schefflera plant or any other indoor plant species into your interior landscaping plans. We can make sure the proper plants are installed in your workspace so you can benefit as much as possible from the office plants around your company.