False aralia (Plerandra elegantissima) cultivation

If so far all the indoor plants seem insufficient, today we bring you one more. The false aralia. The name has been acquired because it is not an aralia. It is actually a Schefflera but it has stuck with this common name. The scientific names are the ones that do not give rise to doubts and in this case it is Dizygotheca elegantissima. Their care is something more special but nothing that should worry us. You dare?



As we have already said, the false thing comes because it actually belongs to the genus Schefflera which has nothing to do with the genus Aralia. Of course, the two share a family (Araliaceae). Maybe that’s where the name comes from. The genus Schefflera is made up of trees, shrubs and climbers, many of them epiphytes with a total of more than 700 species distributed throughout the tropical and subtropical areas of the world, from the easternmost part of Asia to the tropical areas of America. Within this large number of species is the false aralia that has been crowned as one of the most elegant indoor plants. With its fine and slim shape thanks to the narrow, serrated, olive green leaflets, the result is impressive in interior rooms.

Its growth is very slow so it is advisable to buy a somewhat developed specimen, especially if the intention is to have a height of 1-1.5 m and we want it in a soil pot. It is advisable to plant 3 or 4 false aralias in the same pot to achieve good leafiness. Remember that the leaflets are very narrow and the appearance of a plant will be somewhat scrawny.


Being of tropical origin we have to take a few precautions in their care, which we now see.


It has a wide range of temperatures that allow any home to satisfy this aspect. From 12 to 25ºC its development will be normal. As in many tropical plants, you only have to be careful with sudden changes in temperature and drafts. 


As usual, high but not direct . Direct light will burn the leaves, yellowing them before they fall.


The universal substrate mixed with 1/3 of mobs will be ideal because that third of black and / or blonde mobs give the final composition, a point of acidity that the false aralia will appreciate.


The aspect that we must take care of the most. Waterings every 3 or 4 days in summer and more spaced during the colder months. We must not let the substrate dry completely. It must always have a point of humidity, even if it is not much. If irrigation is important, ambient humidity is equally important.

It is necessary to steam with warm water (watch out for contrasts). If the space and location of the plant allow it, a plate with wet river pebbles around it is not a bad solution. In winter, heat sources such as radiators dry out the environment a lot. Try not to be near.


By cuttings and in early spring. A stem is cut, the lower leaves are removed, and it is planted in the new substrate. To maintain optimal conditions after cutting, a widely used technique is to cover the new stem with a transparent bag to create the necessary microclimate of heat and humidity. For people with sensitive skin, it is recommended to use gloves. The latex secreted in the cut is irritating.

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