One of our favourites; the Rubber Plant. The tree can grow to over 100 feet tall in the wild and as an indoor houseplant it usually grows to between 2 to 10 feet high. Early Aztecs waterproofed their clothing and made their own shoes from this common plant and it is still used in the modern process of making rubber today.
01 Plant Facts
Botanical name Ficus Elastica
Native to India, China and Malaysia
02 Plant Care
Light Indirect light is best for the Rubber Plant to thrive. A little direct light in the morning or evening is fine though.
Temperature Rubber Plants are incredibly adaptive and easy to take care of. Ensure that it doesn’t fall below 13°C (55°F) during winter.
Watering Water moderately in spring and summer. Water enough to thoroughly wet its compost and then allow only the top 3cm/1.5 inches to dry out in between each watering. Occassional misting helps mimick this plants native tropical habitat, and reduce watering in the winter. Keep an eye out for dropping leaves, this is an indication of too much water.
03 Care Tips
Pets Midly to non-toxic to dogs and cats.
If you’ve noticed your Rubber Plant is looking a little sad, try these tips:
01 Under Water
Because the leaves of the rubber tree plant are succulent, they gather and hold water to sustain the plant through drought conditions. Unfortunately, many plant owners over-water rubber tree plants, not realizing they don't require as much water as less succulent plants. When the soil is too moist too often, the root hairs die off and the plant wilts. Unless the soil dries out, new root hairs cannot grow and absorb nutrients to support the plant.
02 Brown, Droopy Leaves
You can tell that a rubber tree plant is getting too much water by looking at it carefully. Brown, drooping leaves indicate the plant is being over-watered. The leaves may also become mushy. The soil may become saturated when the plant cannot absorb anymore water. The soil may also have a damp, musty smell if root rot has invaded the plant. When you recognize these symptoms, the rubber tree plant is in need of rescue.