Ask a Question forum: 8 ft. Indoor Umbrella Tree Care/Watering/Age?

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Cincinnati Ohio
umbrellatree1
Aug 10, 2017 7:10 AM CST
Recently inherited an 8 foot Umbrella Tree, still unsure what species in the family it is. Was wondering if based on height someone could help me with watering and care best practices and a way to estimate age.

Thanks!
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Name: Will Creed
NYC
Professional indoor plant consultan
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WillC
Aug 11, 2017 12:40 PM CST
Welcome! Your umbrella tree is a Schefflera actinophylla. It looks like you have it in a good location for light. I can't tell if there are drain holes in the bottom of the pot. I hope so! If so, then wait until the top inch of soil feels dry and then water slowly until a little water trickles through the drain holes.

If there are no drain holes, then knowing how much water to apply is more problematic. You will have to experiment a bit by adding a small amount of water and then waiting to see how long it takes for the top inch of soil to become dry. If it takes less than a week, then try adding a bit more water the next time you water. If it takes more than a week to dry out, then you will have to add less water in the future. The important thing is not to add so much water that the excess accumulates in the bottom of the pot and keeps the soil from drying out appropriately every week or so. Of course, that is not a problem for plants in pots with drain holes.

Schefferas are very prone to spider mites be very alert for them.

Its age depends on how it has been grown over its lifetime. In ideal conditions such as a green house, a Schefflera that size might only be 1-2 years old. However, if it has spent most of its life in relatively reduced light, then yours may be more than 10 years old. Size does not reveal much about an indoor plant's age
Will Creed
Horticultural Help, NYC
www.HorticulturalHelp.com
I now have a book available on indoor plant care
Name: Lin
Florida Zone 9b, 10a

Region: United States of America Deer Region: Florida Charter ATP Member Million Pollinator Garden Challenge I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
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plantladylin
Aug 11, 2017 2:20 PM CST
Yes, your plant is Umbrella Tree (Schefflera actinophylla)

I've never grown one as a container/indoor/houseplant (they grow outdoors in the ground here) but I agree with everything WillC has suggested for proper care!
~ Playing in the dirt is my therapy ... and I'm in therapy a lot! ~



archwest
Jun 23, 2018 1:01 PM CST

My Umbrella tree lost all of its leaves over the winter but is on the comeback! Almost all of the growth is at the bottom, and on the top of only two out of the four branches. Should I leave it alone? or could it use some trimming? Thanks!!!







Name: Will Creed
NYC
Professional indoor plant consultan
Image
WillC
Jun 23, 2018 1:13 PM CST
@archwest Please post a photo of the entire plant, including its pot, so we can see what you have.
Will Creed
Horticultural Help, NYC
www.HorticulturalHelp.com
I now have a book available on indoor plant care

archwest
Jun 23, 2018 4:36 PM CST
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Name: Will Creed
NYC
Professional indoor plant consultan
Image
WillC
Jun 23, 2018 4:45 PM CST
@archwest - It is clearly healthy and well cared for, but my goodness it is up against the ceiling! No wonder its growth has slowed way up there where the light is above the window and minimal. It definitely should be pruned because it will just grow taller.

Any of the tall stems can be pruned back to any height. New growth will then emerge just below the pruning cuts on the stems and grow upward from there. Tip cuttings can be propagated if you are so inclined.

Prune back as many stems as far as you can stand. Pruning will not affect the overall health of your Schefflera, but it will alter its appearance.
Will Creed
Horticultural Help, NYC
www.HorticulturalHelp.com
I now have a book available on indoor plant care

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