Learn how to Look after a Rubber Tree

Is there an ideal houseplant? One thing simple to look after, can develop for years and has a timeless magnificence? I feel the rubber tree ticks all of these packing containers. This tree has shiny, thick leaves and makes fairly an impression in any room.

My favourite rubber tree is in a scene from the film Sabrina with Audrey Hepburn. Within the scene, they’re having a lavish social gathering and there’s a lovely, tall rubber tree within the room. That rubber tree is unquestionably a plant purpose for me.

Possibly sometime mine will get that huge and delightful! With correct care, the tree can attain as much as 10 toes tall (generally taller) indoors! 

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The rubber tree is often known as the Ficus Elastica and comes from India and elements of tropical Asia. The shiny, leathery leaves give this plant a definite look. There may be actually nothing prefer it! The rubber tree has an exquisite form and is a superb choice for anybody who loves houseplants. 


Once you deliver dwelling a brand new rubber tree, right here are some things to think about with reference to potting it. It would look like a good suggestion to place your plant in an enormous pot so it has plenty of room to develop, however the rubber tree prefers to be a bit crowded in a pot.

Strive to decide on a pot that provides about 2 inches of soil round the entire diameter. It will give your plant loads of room to develop and thrive. When selecting a pot, earthenware is at all times an important choice. Unglazed earthenware permits the moisture within the filth to evaporate out of the pot and dry out quicker.

A glazed earthenware pot is not going to have the identical skills to let the moisture come out. I take advantage of each sorts of pots however a very vital side of the pot is to ensure it has a drainage gap so water has a strategy to escape (sitting water will most undoubtedly kill your rubber tree).

Upon getting your pot discovered, it’s time to consider soil. The rubber tree likes effectively draining soil. An all-purpose indoor combine works nice, however I add some further perlite to present the soil extra aeration.

Perlite is an natural materials that comes from volcanic eruptions and you could find it at most backyard shops. Scoop a few of your potting combine and place it on the underside of the pot. Then, put your plant in in order that it sits about 3 inches below the highest pot.

Fill in the remainder of the filth, ensuring your plant stays good and straight. Use your hand to maneuver filth down as you progress across the pot. As soon as the perimeters are stuffed, place a small layer of filth excessive of your plant.

As soon as the plant is potted, place it within the spot you propose to depart it (rubber timber don’t like change). Repotting can generally make your plant drop leaves, so if this occurs, don’t fret … it’s simply getting used to its new surroundings.

A interval of relaxation is important to your rubber tree as soon as it’s been repotted and positioned in a brand new spot. Unsure about the very best spot to place your plant?


This plant likes to drink up the sunshine, so placement in your house is essential to take care of a wholesome plant. The very first thing when selecting a spot is to be sure that it doesn’t have a draft, isn’t close to a vent, or has an AC unit blowing on it.

The plant will most definitely drop leaves (or it may die) whether it is close to a draft. The rubber timber thrive on an indoor temperature of 60-70 levels Fahrenheit. Discover a place in your house with medium to brilliant gentle. Brighter gentle will assist your plant develop quicker.

When you put it in a darker spot of a room it may change into “leggy” because it tries to stretch towards the sunshine. In case your plant is “reaching” then simply place it in a brighter spot. The rubber tree has some lovely variegated species that do require extra gentle.

The tricolor variegated species has inexperienced, white and pink in its leaves. The white within the leaf requires extra gentle as a result of lack of chlorophyll ranges. They’ll “burn” simply so regulate the leaves.

They are going to inform you if they’re getting an excessive amount of gentle. If there’s any brown on the tip (burning), meaning there’s an excessive amount of gentle hitting your variegated plant. 

Again to the non-variegated rubber tree. What when you don’t have nice window gentle otherwise you’re fearful about your room being too darkish? Inserting a mirror by the plant will assist bounce extra gentle onto your plant.

One other tip to create a brighter surroundings is a white room. White paint will bounce extra gentle round! Appears so easy, nevertheless it actually is efficient in serving to with a low gentle state of affairs in a room.

If you wish to get most gentle in your rubber tree, then be sure that the leaves are freed from mud. I’ve discovered that the rubber tree can get fairly dusty, so examine the leaves each few weeks for mud buildup.

If there’s mud current, then a moist fabric will work nice to take away it. When dusting the rubber tree, watch out with new leaves. The brand new, skinny leaves are very fragile and if broken whereas they’re younger, then the harm will keep on the leaf its complete life.

When dusting mature leaves, ensure you place your hand below the leaf for assist. Further stress on the leaf may trigger it to snap whereas dusting. This has occurred to me earlier than and it’s fairly unhappy.

When it snaps, there might be a white sap-like liquid that comes from the leaf the place it was indifferent from the department. It’s utterly regular however it may irritate some folks’s pores and skin, so wash fingers simply in case it will get in your pores and skin.


Discovering a constant watering rhythm to your tree will assist provide the confidence it’s essential to hold your plant alive and wholesome for years to come back. If the leaves begin to droop a bit, then you realize your plant may be very thirsty.

Rubber timber prefer to dry out however they don’t prefer to change into bone dry. One other strategy to inform in case your plant is admittedly thirsty is once you’re watering and the water runs out rapidly by the soil. Soil with extra moisture will take longer to empty. If the water runs straight by, then give it one other good soak.

The rubber tree enjoys beneficiant watering however be sure that it has time to dry out to keep away from root rot (this occurs when the plant is waterlogged or if it sits in water too lengthy).

If root rot occurs. then your plant doesn’t have an important probability of residing anymore, so keep away from overwatering in any respect prices. As a rule of thumb, let the highest 2/3 of your plant’s soil dry out earlier than watering your rubber tree once more.

You may as well stick your finger within the soil 3-4 inches) and really feel if there’s any moisture or choose up the pot and really feel if the submit is heavy from holding moisture. After watering your rubber tree, if any water drains into your saucer, discard the additional water so the plant doesn’t sit in water and get root rot.

Watering length will rely in your local weather and humidity ranges. When you reside in a drier local weather, then your plant will must be watered extra ceaselessly. As soon as you determine your plant’s rhythm/length of drying out, a watering routine must be very easy to stick to. This plant loves consistency and can develop higher with a gradual routine.


The rubber tree can develop tall if left unpruned. If left unpruned, your tree may have one lengthy trunk. If that is your required look, then nice! It will make your tree develop vertical quicker!

When you’d prefer to have extra of a “bushy” tree, then you should utilize your fingers and pinch off a brand new rising tip to advertise the plant to create extra branches.

When you snip or prune a department, then that half will cut up into two branches as soon as the brand new development is available in. Pruning is an thrilling behavior that produces nice outcomes over time.


The rubber tree likes to be fed with fertilizer to advertise development. Fertilize your tree within the spring/summer time (the rising season), however again off within the fall/winter months. Fertilizing your plant each different watering session is an efficient rule of thumb.

I really like utilizing a liquid fertilizer that I can add to my water. 

Realizing my fertilizer is a liquid offers me the peace of thoughts that the fertilizer is evenly distributed all through the water (not like granules or a powder combine). When selecting fertilizer, it’s going to have three letters on the package deal: NPK.

The “N” stands for Nitrogen. Nitrogen helps with chlorophyll manufacturing, which results in photosynthesis, which results in an even bigger, more healthy plant! The “P” stands for Phosphorus. Phosphorus helps with retaining the roots of your plant wholesome and promotes root development.

The final letter “Ok” stands for Potassium. Potassium helps your plant distribute vitamins. It additionally helps your plant struggle off illness. Consider it as an immunity booster to your plant! A regular fertilizer for houseplants will work nice to your rubber tree.

Be certain to learn the label of your fertilizer and comply with the directions. I like utilizing half of the advisable fertilizer quantity with the rubber tree. Utilizing an excessive amount of fertilizer could cause your plant to burn.

Burning signifies that too many vitamins have been saved within the root system they usually can’t settle for/take up water anymore. If there’s a probability that your plant has had an excessive amount of fertilizer then give it a great watering to flush the roots. Don’t fertilize the following week in order that your plant has time to recuperate and relaxation.

What if Your Rubber Tree is Dropping Leaves?

Once you repot your rubber tree or transfer it, it is extremely widespread for it to drop a few leaves as a result of shock. Outdated leaves will fall off right here and there as they age out as effectively. That is completely regular!

What in case your rubber tree drops a bunch of leaves on the similar time? This isn’t regular and it may very well be as a result of overwatering or different points. In case your tree’s leaves start to droop, flip yellow and ultimately fall off, then that is most definitely as a result of overwatering.

The yellowing of the leaves is named Chlorosis. Chlorosis signifies that chlorophyll isn’t forming in your plant. It’s superb that vegetation can inform you what they want by their shade.

In case your leaf is popping yellow, it’s possible a name for assist. Again off watering and ensure your plant is drying out between watering in order that it doesn’t get waterlogged.

If it continues to occur, pop your plant out of the pot and examine for root rot. The quickest strategy to inform in case your plant has succumbed to root rot is discovering mushy, black or darkish roots. When you see this, generally your plant could be saved however there’s a probability the roots are completed and the plant gained’t make it.

When you can, snip the lifeless roots out of the foundation system and place the plant in a pot of recent soil (not the waterlogged soil from the earlier pot). Give your plant a while and hopefully it’s going to come again to life! 

One more reason your plant’s leaves may very well be turning yellow is a scarcity of sunshine. If so, then set your plant in a brighter spot so it may take in extra solar. The solar is like drugs to your plant and this might remedy your leaf drop drawback. Additionally, be sure that the plant isn’t close to a draft as this may even trigger the leaves to drop.

The rubber tree’s temperament is fairly easygoing and it’s a welcome addition to any plant lover’s dwelling. I hope the following tips assist and also you’re in a position to get pleasure from your rubber tree for years to come back! -Janae