Ficus Elastica Var: Decora – Rubber Plant

Ficus Elastica or the Rubber Plant, is probably one of the best known foliage plants. It grows very erect, with large leaves, and looks well standing alone or in company with other foliage plants.

Temperatures:

  • Growing season 22-24 °C (72-75 °F)
  • Minimum winter 10-13 °C (50-55 °F)

Soil: A good soil-less compost.

rubber plant ficus elastica

Where to position: In a light position away from sun and draughts. Excessive cold will cause the leaves to fall.

Watering requirements: Keep soil moist to thumb pressure, with lukewarm water – cold can be fatal; avoid leaves. It is very thirsty and may need daily watering. It needs no spraying but likes some humidity. Feed once a week with a weak liquid fertilizer in its water. Good drainage is essential.

General care: Sponge leaves to remove dust. Buy special plant polish from the florist to make the leaves shine – it will not harm the plant.

Rest: No marked rest period and no special routine, but it needs less water and feeding in winter.

When it looks sick:

  • Leaves begin to drop : This may be due to under-or over-watering. Restore a moist soil condition, with soft, lukewarm water. It may be potbound. Re-pot if necessary.
  • Leaves drop : It could be the soil condition, draughts or sharp drops in temperature. These should be checked and corrected.
  • The red stems pale to a dull pink : Stop feeding at once.
  • Insects : Check regularly for scale insects.

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