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How To Prune A Schefflera Plant Better? Here Are 3 Ways!

A tropical flowering plant in the family Araliaceae, the Schefflera plant is native to Taiwan and Hainan Province in China. The plant is commonly a dwarf umbrella tree because it resembles a smaller version of typical umbrella trees, i.e., Schefflera actinophylla. It is important to know how to prune a Schefflera plant.

The Schefflera plant can grow up to 10 feet tall and wide. It can make it difficult for the average person to keep track of all of their plants without pruning them regularly. Pruning can help maintain the shape of your Schefflera tree and promote more growth from the branches that have not been pruned yet.

The article will help you know about the different types of pruning techniques used for Schefflera plants. It will also let you know the right time to prune these plants and what tools should be used. Continue reading if you want the answer to how to prune a Schefflera plant.

How To Prune A Schefflera Plant
Help me prune my schefflera (umbrella plant) – via Reddit

Pruning Techniques For a Schefflera Plant

Pruning is a technique that is used to shape and manage plants. The goal of pruning is to maintain the plant’s health and appearance. You do so by removing dead or diseased branches and stems and those that are growing in the wrong direction or are too long.

You can prune the Schefflera plant at different times of the year to make it grow better. Pruning during winter will stimulate new growth in spring, summer will promote more branching, and fall will encourage a bushier appearance.

Different types of pruning techniques are used for the Schefflera plant, including top and bottom, leaf-only and whole-plant. You can do three types of cuts to a tree: thinning, reduction, and heading. Each has its benefits and drawbacks that need to be weighed. Let’s see which type of pruning is the best for your homegrown Schefflera plant.

3 Ways On How To Prune A Schefflera Plant

Here are our best tips and practices for pruning a Schefflera plant.

1.     Reducing Schefflera Plant’s Height

A simple way to prune your canopy plant is to make it shorter. It is a common problem for umbrella plants with one stem: these usually grow very tall and thin. You have to cut the top growth to make your plant have a more attractive shape. Make sure you are cutting right above the growth node for better results.

This pruning technique is quite easy for all types of umbrella plants. Moreover, it prevents your plant from diseases and undesired height, giving it a fuller look.

2.     Making Schefflera Plant Thinner

Sometimes your umbrella plant can grow too tall – but it might not be the lone problem. It could also get very wide and bushy. If you find yourself in this situation, you might want to prune the plant. For the gorgeous umbrella trees, you should avoid over-pruning them so the shape will remain elegant.

You have to cut the horizontal branches upright at the growth node where the leaves sprouts. Remember not to cut vertical branches as you want to reduce the density of your Schefflera plant, not its height. The new branches will start to grow from the point you cut; regular pruning is essential to maintain a plant’s shape.

3.     Rejuvenating Schefflera Plant

Schefflera, or umbrella plant becomes bushy and tall quickly, so it needs to be pruned from time to time. It tends to be more helpful for potted plants which are bare-bottomed, scraggly, or are getting tall. If the plant has healthy-looking branches, it would be best to cut the stem around 6 inches to give it a fresh look.

If you are pruning your Schefflera plant after a long time, the best way to do it is to prune down. A rule of thumb is to leave 2 or 3 leaf nodes on each stem while pruning. It will ensure better growth and a fresh start for your evergreen.

Interestingly, you can utilize your umbrella plant’s cut or pruned branches to grow more plants or share with your neighbors. Take the cuttings you have removed and apply some rooting hormones at their base.

Place these cuttings in the water and wait for the roots to grow. After a few weeks, you will see roots sprouting from the bottom. It is time to take these branches off the water and place them in a potting mix.

How To Prune A Schefflera Plant 2
Woman hand cutting branch from stem of schefflera arboricola – via Freepik

Prune Schefflera Plant In 5 Minutes

Pruning the Schefflera plant doesn’t take more than minutes. Follow the below-mentioned steps, and you are good to go!

Things You Need

Let’s start!

  • Identify the growth nodes typically present on the leaves’ sprouting point.
  • Carefully choose the nodes to cut as it will highly affect the future looks of your plant.
  • It is essential to check your plant’s health before starting pruning. Ensure that it is in good condition without being infected or diseased. If you see any signs of infestation, repot your Schefflera plant in fresh potting mix and leave pruning to some other day.
  • The leaves should be green and fresh; if not, your plant suffers from any underlying problem. It can be overwearing or lack of nutrients. You can approach our comment section if you face any such issue; our gardening experts will solve your problem. Letting the soil dry for some time and adding fertilizer is a quick solution.
  • After considering all these things, your Schefflera plant is ready for pruning. When trimming a Schefflera plant, cut the stem above where another leaf has sprouted.
  • Cut the plant to break up dense clumps and make it look more evenly grown.
  • To reduce Schefflera plant height, cut off the tops of the tallest stalks about an inch (2.5 cm).
  • That’s it!

How to care for Schefflera potted plants

  • Schefflera plants need plenty of light, so it is best to place them near a window or outside on a patio or deck. The soil should be kept moist but not soaked wet, as this will cause root rot.
  • This plant is a light lover, so it grows in the direction of light. Therefore, you should keep moving it to different spots to ensure uniform growth.
  • It would help if you also watered Schefflera plants with distilled water to avoid the buildup of minerals in the soil that can lead to leaf yellowing or browning.
  • Choose the sharp and sanitized pruning tools to keep your plant away from infections. Sharp tools keep the stems safe from crushing.

You can easily learn how to prune a Schefflera plant by watching this video demonstration:


Pruning a Schefflera plant can be difficult, but this article has made it easier. The trick is to cut the oldest leaves off at the base of the plant. When you cut those leaves off, you will notice new growth, making your Schefflera look fuller and healthier.

We hope this article contains all you need to know about how to prune the Schefflera plant. Keep these simple pruning and care tips in mind, and nourish your Schefflera plant to help it grow. Don’t forget to leave your feedback in the comment section!