Need Info on Burgundy Rubber Plant

amateur_fionaJanuary 25, 2007

Hi!

I recently received a burgundy rubber plant as a gift and need some help understanding how best to handle it as there is minimal info on the card that came with it! The information I have found online seems to be somewhat conflicting.

I keep this plant indoors, by a north window.

How often to water?

How often to feed?

Can I repot? When? (I have read that they like to be a little crowded. How do I know when it's time to go bigger? Also, I would like to repot regardless since the pot it came in is ugly. Any special instructions/precaustions when repotting?)

Repot into any particular type of container?

How big will it get?

I appreciate anyone who can take the time to answer these questions for me!

Thanks!

Fiona

Springfield, MO

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tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)

I keep this plant indoors, by a north window. You'd be better served to acclimate the plant to a brighter location. This plant will tolerate full sun in your zone.

How often to water? Allow the soil to become very dry during irrigation intervals and then soak well, making sure the root mass is well-wetted when you irrigate, that the water is not just passing quickly through the soil, and there are no dry pockets of soil after watering. If you cannot water in this manner w/o fear of soil staying wet for extended periods, you need to change to a more appropriate, free-draining soil.

How often to feed? Feed with full recommended strength solution of a low N fertilizer or perhaps something like 20-20-20 whenever the plant is actively growing (probably Apr - Sep in your zone at 2-4 week intervals. Your watering habits and the metabolism should be your guide as to the actual frequency. Leaf color is a good indicator of soil nutrient status as well.

Can I repot? When? (I have read that they like to be a little crowded. How do I know when it's time to go bigger? Also, I would like to repot regardless since the pot it came in is ugly. Any special instructions/precautions when repotting?) Repot immediately before the strongest growth period. In your zone, that would be late Jun - early Jul. For now, leave the plant in its present home & use a cache pot if you don't like the looks of it. There are lots of my posts on this forum with advice about repotting and root-pruning if you care to do a search & read about the processes. F. elastica tolerates being grown tight rather well, so there is no big tear to repot now. It will grow with best vitality if there is some room for its feet to grow too, but that is not always a desirable situation because it also causes the plant to produce big leaves, longer internodes, and a leggier plant o/a.

When roots are crawling out the drain holes & building up on the soil surface, a repot is in order - if not, your ok so long as the soil is structurally sound & over-watering a non-issue.

Repot into any particular type of container? One with a drain hole. A container that is gas-permeable will generally yield better vitality than a plastic or vitrified container.

How big will it get? If you're good to it - a hundred feet or so would prolly be its limit. How tall are your ceilings?

Al

    Bookmark   January 25, 2007 at 5:31PM
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