4.6 out of 5 (414 experiences)
About Rubber Plant
Ficus elastica, more commonly known as the rubber tree, has a white, milky latex that is a source of natural rubber. They’ve also been shown to have excellent antimicrobial and antioxidant properties. The aerial roots of the rubber tree have been used to create incredible living bridges in India. The bridges get stronger over time as the roots slowly fuse together, and some are over a hundred years old! 🌉
Also known as
Rubber Tree, Rubber Fig, Rubber Bush, Indian Rubber Bush and Indian Rubber Tree
How to care for Rubber Plant
How often to water your Rubber Plant
Rubber Plant needs 0.5 cups of water every 9 when it doesn’t get direct sunlight and is potted in a 5" pot located in Boston, Massachusetts.
Use our water calculator to personalize watering recommendations to your environment or download Greg for more advanced recommendations for all of your plants.
Water 0.5 cups every
Check the growing potential in your area
A plant's growing potential is determined from its location, the time of year, and current local weather.
Finding light for Rubber Plant in your home
Rubber Plant love being close to bright, sunny windows 😎.
Place it less than 1ft from a south-facing window to ensure it receives enough light to survive during this time of reduced sunlight intensity in Boston, Massachusetts ⛅.
Rubber Plant does not tolerate low-light 🚫.
How to fertilize Rubber Plant
Most potting soils come with ample nutrients which plants use to produce new growth.
By the time your plant has depleted the nutrients in its soil it’s likely grown enough to need a larger pot anyway.
To replenish this plant's nutrients, repot your Rubber Plant after it doubles in size or once a year—whichever comes first.
Rubber Plant is generally easy to care for, though some plant parents report facing challenges with growing it. Check out the reviews down below to read more about their experiences!
Rubber Plant prefers for the soil to dry out between waterings and should be watered regularly. Use our water calculator to personalize watering recommendations to your environment or download Greg for more advanced recommendations for all of your plants.
Rubber Plant requires abundant, bright and direct light. Place it less than one foot from a window to ensure it receives enough light to survive 💪. Select your region to see how the current weather in your area affects the placement in your home 🏡.
Rubber Plant is not safe to consume. If you, a family member, or a pet has ingested any amount of plant material contact Poison Control, US (800) 222-1222, or your veterinarian. If you have children, cats, or dogs in the home, we suggest keeping this plant out of reach.
Rubber Plant doesn’t require additional humidity. Plants absorb most water through their root system rather than their leaves, so the best way to provide humidity for your plants is through watering the soil.
Rubber Plant does best in well-draining soil. A good soil will contain lots of organic matter such as coco coir as well as perlite or vermiculite to help with drainage. Adding a handful of perlite to regular store-bought potting soil should do the trick!
Rubber Plant should be repotted after it doubles in size or once a year, whichever comes first. Fresh potting soil has all the nutrients your plant needs, so as long as it’s refreshed yearly, you shouldn’t need to use fertilizer. Remember, plants get their energy from sunlight, not fertilizer!
It’s common for Rubber Plant to go dormant in the wintertime and you may notice their growth slow down. Waterings should be spaced out more during this time.
Rubber Plant is native to worldwide Tropics.
Rubber Plant produces flowers in the wild, but does not flower when kept as houseplants.
Rubber Plant will branch off as it grows. To encourage branching, pinch off the newest growth at the tip and the stem will branch off into two.
USDA Hardiness Zone
Rubber Plant can be grown outdoors in USDA Hardiness Zones 10a-12a. Find your local hardiness zone here.
Rubber Plant can be propagated by the stem method. To propagate:
- Make a cut just above the node. The node is the break in the stem where the leaf emerges.
- To get the cutting to root, you can either:
- Place the cutting in water until roots emerge and are ~2” long and then transplant into well-draining soil, or
- Place the cutting directly into well-draining soil and water when dry.
Yellow leaves aren’t always a reason to panic, and can be a normal part of a plant’s life cycle. Unless brand new leaves are turning yellow or all the leaves change color at once, it’s likely just your plant shedding old leaves.
Overwatering and root rot are the most likely cause of problems in Rubber Plant, since they are sensitive to wet soil. The leaves may also appear to be curling or drooping. Less often, yellow leaves are caused by underwatering, nutrient deficiencies, or pests.
Replace soggy soil with fresh, dry soil and download Greg to make sure your plant never gets overwatered again!
Care Summary for Rubber Plant
0.5 cups every 9 days
< 1ft from a window
Repot after 2x growth
Based on your location in Boston, Massachusetts, the 4” pot your plant is in, and that it doesn’t get direct sunlight.
What other plant parents say
I’ve had this ficus for years now, probably 3 or 4 and she’s doing so great. She’s survived 3 moves and almost 5 months of no watering at all and just living off a self-watering pot. Unbelievable really. She’s been repotted 3 times and grows so much every time I do that. I did have to give it support so it would stand more upright or else the branches lean and open up toward the side.
Overall a beautiful, hardy plant that, placed in the right spot that she likes, will thrive and grow and grow. It takes a little testing to see where she’s happy but when you find it, boom! You’re set.
I love her!
Super fast grower in the correct light conditions and rewarding to watch because every couple leaves adds inches. Also very tolerant of low light - I had it on a bottom shelf with almost no light for a year and it was fine. It didn’t grow, but it didn’t suffer. Then as soon as I put it in a bright windowsill it started popping out leaves like crazy.