The Q&A Archives: Schefflera Problems

Question: I have several Schefflera plants and every fall and winter my plants lose a great many leaves and stems. I water and fertilize and still I lose leaves. I place my plants upstairs where it is warmer and near windows. However in the spring and summer I place them outside they grow like weeds. I feed them only Miracle-Gro and they do wonderfully, then come the fall and winter I'm faced with falling leaves and stems. Please help.

Answer: It sounds as though your plants are just making a normal adjustment to indoor conditions. Inside air is warmer and drier than outdoors, and the temperature is generally the same both day and night. Winter also brings shorter day length. All of these factors will change the way your plants behave. You can help them along by not fertilizing in the fall and winter months, and by reducing the amount of water they receive once you bring them indoors. Try keeping them in a bright, but cool area until it's time to take them outdoors again. (Schefflera prefers indoor temperatures of 55F - 65F degrees) If you follow the above guidelines, your plants should make an easier transition to indoor conditions next fall.

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