Umbrella Plant Soil Requirements | How to Choose Best Soil for Schefflera Plant

The umbrella plant, also known as Schefflera, is well-known in the world of indoor plants for its lovely appearance and simple maintenance requirements. But even though it is easy to maintain, you need to know what kind of soil an umbrella plant needs if you’re thinking about buying one or repotting one.

Umbrella plants prefer rich, slightly acidic soil that has good drainage and air circulation. Two parts of peat moss, one part of compost, and one part perlite should be combined to create the ideal potting soil blend for umbrella plants. Ensure that the pH of the soil is between 6.6 and 6.5.

This is the best place to learn if you have a Schefflera or Umbrella plant and are unsure of what soil to use. You can learn everything you need to know about the soil of the umbrella plant from this article.

Variety of Soils

Natural soils are categorized by scientists based on their physical makeup, formation process, and mineral properties. Twelve different orders are used by the United States Department of Agriculture to classify soils. They also categorize soil according to its texture.

The amount of sand, silt, and clay in a particular soil is referred to as its texture. Aeration, water holding capacity, and overall soil structure are all impacted by texture.

  • Sandy soils have excellent drainage and aeration because sand is the largest soil particle. They can, however, struggle to hold onto nutrients and water.
  • Medium-sized particles make up silt. Silt soils typically have a good balance of drainage and water-holding capacity.
  • Clay soils frequently have smaller air pockets because clay particles are small. Clay soils can have poor aeration and drainage, despite being excellent at holding nutrients and water.
  • Sand, silt, and clay are present in roughly equal amounts in loamy soils. As a result, they have an appropriately balanced combination of water holding, drainage, structure, and aeration.

What are a Potting Soil Mix’s Main Ingredients?

What are a Potting Soil Mix's Main Ingredients?

While potting mixes are usually made from different soilless components, native soils are frequently described using the words mentioned above. The most popular components of potting soil are listed below.

  • Coconut husk shreds are used to make coco coir. It is a kind of organic material that can replace peat moss in landscaping projects.
  • Organic matter that has been decomposed includes compost. It increases the ability of plants to hold water while also supplying nutrients and helpful microbes.
  • Small pieces of bark called pine bark fines can be used to improve drainage and aeration.
  • A type of volcanic rock called pumice has numerous tiny air pockets in it. It can enhance drainage and air circulation.
  • A type of expanded rock is perlite. It will help your soil retain water while also aerating and improving drainage.
  • To increase the variety and quantity of helpful microbes in the soil, soil activators are used. This may increase the availability of nutrients.
  • A type of organic material called sphagnum peat moss aids in holding water and nutrients. It can help lower soil pH because it is acidic.
  • Expanded minerals are used to create vermiculite. It increases aeration and drainage while retaining moisture.

Why Is It Important To Choose The Right Soil?

Why Is It Important To Choose The Right Soil?

The essential nutrients a plant needs to grow are all present in the soil. Because the roots of indoor plants are confined to the pot, a suitable soil mixture is crucial. It should be able to drain excess water, allow for air passage, and hold nutrients and moisture.

For indoor plants to grow and thrive, the soil must have a pH level that is balanced.

When assembling a pot or container, bear the following factors in mind to select the best quality soil for your umbrella plant:

1. The extra water needs to be drained

The majority of indoor plants have watering problems because of the poor soil. The most common reason for houseplant decline is overwatering, which can occur if the soil you are using has poor drainage qualities.

2. It must contain the necessary moisture

Your plants’ health will benefit if you select soil that has a good capacity to retain moisture. The plant won’t be able to easily dehydrate as a result.

3. It allows gas exchange between the soil

To prevent root rot, there needs to be airflow between the roots and the soil. When the roots are denied oxygen, root rot develops. Additionally, some additional atmospheric gases must also pass through the roots of the plant.

4. It contains a good amount of vitamins and minerals

The nutrients and minerals the plant needs will be held in a healthy soil mixture. You must make sure the soil has the necessary nutrients to support the plant because it is the only source of nutrients other than fertilizers.

5. It offers a home for advantageous microbes

The soil’s microbes can improve its nutritional content and promote plant growth. Plant health can be enhanced and diseases prevented by soil containing a lot of beneficial microbes.

Signs You’re Planting Your Umbrella Plant in the Wrong Soil Mix

Signs You're Planting Your Umbrella Plant in the Wrong Soil Mix

Using the soil mixture can lead to a number of problems. Your umbrella plant is in danger if you are using the incorrect soil.

It may also result in the death of your plant in some extreme cases. The following are some typical indications that you must be using the incorrect potting mix, as provided by your umbrella plant.

1. A Brown Leaf

You will notice some brown leaves at the lower parts of the plant if the soil mixture you are using is poor or filled with undesirable elements. Brown leaves can also result from dehydration or from the soil being too wet.

An increase in root rot will occur as a result of excessive moisture keeping the roots wet for an extended period of time. The plant, however, will dry out if the soil is too thin to retain moisture. Day by day, leaves will lose their moisture and dry out and turn brown.

2. Leaves Turning Yellow

Any plant will wilt if its leaves aren’t given enough moisture to function properly. Your umbrella plant’s leaves will wilt if the soil you are using for it is unable to retain enough moisture. To keep the moisture inside them, the leaves wilt in an effort to reduce their surface area.

3. Slow Growth Rate

The soil is the main source of plant nutrients. Although it may not be the only source of nutrients or the only factor in a plant’s growth, the soil is still very significant. The plant’s growth rate will drop quickly if it doesn’t receive the necessary amounts of nutrients and minerals.

You’ll notice a change in its growth rate in a few weeks. They won’t grow as anticipated even in the growth phase’s summer and spring months. Your plants’ health and rate of growth won’t ever be compromised by the wrong soil mixture.

3. The Soil Is Emitting an Unpleasant Odour

The roots’ ability to receive oxygen and breathe will cease if the soil mixture retains too much moisture. The roots won’t be able to breathe and stay fresh without air.

Overwatering or heavy soil can clog the tiny, breathable pores in the roots. Root rot results from this. Root rot has an unpleasant smell and poses a severe threat to the health of your plants.

Also Check: What Kind of Light does an Umbrella Plant Need

How to Select the Ideal Potting Soil for Your Schefflera Plant?

You must be aware by this point that soil has a significant impact on the health and lifespan of your Schefflera. The health of your plants will therefore be compromised if you skimp on the potting mix. Here are some recipes for making the best potting mix possible for your soil.

Formula 1

  • 1 part of sand or perlite
  • 1/3 of compost
  • Peat moss in two parts

The drainage of the soil will be improved by perlite or sand, compost will help retain the necessary moisture, and peat moss will help the soil hold the nutrients the plant requires.

Formula 2

  • A portion of garden soil
  • 1 part peat to 2 parts perlite
  • Just a little lime

For the best potting mix for your umbrella plant, thoroughly combine the ingredients.

Formula 3

Mixing the following ingredients together is another simple recipe.

  • Normal potting soil
  • A perlite or sand

Use it for your Schefflera by combining the ingredients in equal parts.

Can You Grow Your Schefflera In Succulent Soil?

For succulents that grow in dry climates, succulent soil mixtures are ideal.

These plants can survive for long periods of time without much moisture. The succulents’ top priority is well-draining materials, which are abundant in the succulent mix. The umbrella plant, or Schefflera, is a tropical plant that requires moisture, so using succulent soil won’t make it happy.

You will observe the following if you use succulent soil mix for your Schefflera:

  • Too quickly, the soil is drying up.
  • Your Schefflera needs to be watered far too often.
  • If you don’t water the plant on time, it becomes dehydrated and droops.

It is therefore best to avoid using succulent soil with your umbrella plant. If you still choose to use succulent mix, you must add some soil amendments.

To help the succulent soil hold the needed moisture for the umbrella plant, add ingredients like peat moss, compost, and coco coir.

Check Out: Umbrella Plant Propagation Guide

Where should I Put My Umbrella Plant?

An umbrella plant needs the right pot in addition to the ideal soil mixture to stay healthy.

Here, you need to take into account three things:

  • How big is the pot 
  • The pot’s drainage system
  • The pot’s composition

Always choose a pot that is 2-3 inches wider and taller than the one your umbrella plant was in when you report it.  Get a pot with drainage holes if you want to make sure proper drainage occurs. These pots allow extra water to drain out of them.

Furthermore, as long as you take the proper care, you can get a pot made of any material. For instance, if you use a plastic pot, the umbrella plant will require less watering, and if you use a clay pot, it will require more watering.

Why Do I Know That My Umbrella Plant Needs To Be Replanted?

Why Do I Know That My Umbrella Plant Needs To Be Replanted?

When a plant needs to be repotted, it will exhibit a few specific symptoms.

  • Infiltration of roots through the drainage holes
  • Dehydrated plant with roots visible on the soil’s surface
  • Slowed development
  • Leaf coloration

These indicators indicate that you need to repot your umbrella plant into a larger container because it has outgrown its current one and requires more room.

How Should an Umbrella Plant Be Repotted?

Let’s examine the repotting process for your Schefflera or umbrella plant.

  • Before repotting, start by watering your umbrella plant. This will make it simple for the plant to remove itself from the pot.
  • Get a pot that is 2–3 inches wider.
  • By following any of the earlier recipes, create an ideal soil mixture.
  • Before adding soil to the pot, add some pebbles. As a result, the soil won’t drain away with the water.
  • Soil should be poured into the pot halfway.
  • Holding the stem, carefully pull the pot away from your umbrella plant to release it from its container. You can use a knife to remove soil from the pot if your umbrella plant is root-bound.
  • After removing the plant, thoroughly inspect the roots. The roots should be untangled, and any damaged or diseased roots should be pruned.
  • Now set the plant inside the pot and fill it with soil all around. Let the soil settle by tapping the pot.
  • To settle and lessen the stress of repotting, water the umbrella plant after repotting.


Can I Plant Schefflera in Cactus Soil?

Although it will do in a pinch, cactus soil isn’t the best for Schefflera plants. If you already have cactus soil, it’s best to combine it with peat moss in a ratio of one part to one part.

Does Schefflera Prefer Dry or Wet Ground?

Wet or dry soil isn’t tolerated by these plants. Instead, they favor slightly moist soil.

What Are the Main Soil Factors to Take into Account When Repotting Schefflera?

Use a well-draining potting mix when repotting. Fresh potting soil should be added in place of the old.

Does the Soil Mix for Schefflera Change Depending on the Plant’s Size?

No, regardless of the size of the plant, you should use the same kind of potting soil.


Consider the needs of the plants before purchasing soil because it is a crucial component. For an umbrella plant, you should get soil that is consistently moist and doesn’t retain a lot of water.

We have provided some recommended mixes that you can quickly prepare for your umbrella plant. Use any of them, but avoid using soil that is too loose or heavy.

Let us know in the comments section which soil you prefer for your green friends. 

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  • Vaishnavi

    Vaishnavi is a student of organic chemistry. She is a knowledgeable and enthusiastic gardener who enjoys sharing plant information and ideas. She also enjoys writing inspirational poems. She portrays her love for plants and nature through her poems.

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