Common name: Umbrella tree
Origin: Australia, New Guinea
Height at maturity: 1 to 13 meters
Exposure: sunny to partial shade
Plant type: shrub
Flower color: pinkish brown to ruby red
Type of soil: rich, humus and draining
Watering: normal without excess
Use: in pots, in the garden
Diseases and pests: scale insects and thrips
Toxicity: irritant sap
Storage of seeds: 3 years in a dry place away from light at 3/4°C (refrigerator)
The umbrella tree appears in its region of origin in the form of a large shrub or a small tree with thick branches and few branches.
This plant is fast growing and can reach 2 to 3 meters in height in a pot and much more in the ground in regions where it does not freeze.
The leaves are alternate, 10 to 30 centimeters long, oval to oblong, leathery, shiny, and borne on branches in terminal rosettes. Young plants produce leaves with fewer and smaller leaflets than adults.
Flowering takes place in summer and offers panicles 40 to 80 centimeters long, grouping small flowers with 4 or 5 red petals.
The fruits are small red drupes then black when ripe, fleshy and spherical.
In temperate climates it is recommended to grow this plant under shelter in full light but not in full sun in an equal mixture of garden soil, sand, peat and ordinary potting soil.
Indoors, this plant often tends to slough off the base and needs a temperature of around 15°C to 22°C. Mist the foliage from time to time if it is hot, take the plant out in partial shade in summer.
Some plants have depolluting properties. They neutralize the various chemical products in materials such as: wall coverings, floors, fabrics, furniture, glues, paints, solvents,… present in our interiors. Among these purifying plants are among others the Schefflerra.