How to care for a Ficus Elastica | Rubber Tree plantFicus Elastica gets its nickname "Rubber Tree" because it contains latex which was once used to make rubber! Now they're cultivated as ornamental plants. There are many cultivars including Tineke, Burgundy, and Ruby.
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- Every 3 years
- Strong air purifying
- Bright, indirect light
- Mildly Toxic
- Once a month (spring & summer)
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Rubber Trees are native to part of south and southeast Asia.
Like most Ficus, Rubber Trees are great air purifiers!
Rubber Trees are mildly toxic to people and pets. The latex in their leaves and stems can be an eye/skin irritant, so wear gloves when pruning.
Water when 50-75% of the soil is dry. Give it a nice big drink until the water drains from the pot's drainage holes. Don't allow the pot to sit in standing water. Rubber Trees are also fans of humidity and benefit from misting their leaves.
Rubber Trees like bright, indirect light. They can tolerate lower light conditions, but will lose some of their rich colouring. Variegated varieties will not tolerate low light conditions.
Fertilize once a month during spring and summer with a diluted liquid fertilizer. Rubber Trees do not need to be fertilized in the winter.
Rubber Trees are fast growers in the right conditions, but can tolerate being slightly root bound in their pot. They need to be repotted about every 3 years.
Rubber Trees don't require much pruning, but when you do, make sure to wear gloves because the latex they produce can be a skin and eye irritant. Once your rubber tree reaches your desired height, you can cut the main trunk at this height which will encourage outward growth.
Rubber Trees are susceptible to common houseplant pests including mealybugs, scale, spider mites, and thrips. When they are overwatered, they can develop root rot.