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Can umbrella plants survive outside?

Want to move your umbrella plants to your outdoor space? Let’s talk about how umbrella plants survive outside and when they need to come inside!

As a tropical plant native to Australia, the Schefflera is simply everywhere! You can find it in an office and most households.

Aesthetically pleasing with exotic foliage, the umbrella plant has gained popularity among people all over the world.

Another thing that people appreciate is the maintenance level – super easy! This plant does not need much attention besides a few specific requirements.

Ultimately, the Umbrella plant is one of the best starter plants to begin your gardening journey!

But, when it comes to keeping the plant outside, you may need to think twice. This means getting your facts in order and learning about the tropical gem as much as possible.

Getting familiarized with this plant also means knowing how to properly take care of it, including its water, light, and temperature preferences.

If all of this is fairly new to you, we are happy to provide some insight! Let’s answer the question, “Can umbrella plants survive outside?” and get additional information on the subject.


Printable Umbrella Plant care guide

Join the (free!) KeepYourPlantsAlive+ community to access this exclusive printable plant care guide! Once you sign up, you can right click & save the JPG care guide. Or keep scrolling for more!

Umbrella Plant plant care guide

Can Schefflera plants grow outdoors?

The question of whether a Schefflera plant can live outside can be a complex one. First things first, it is important to know that you can keep this plant both inside and outside.

Interestingly enough, it thrives outdoors if it has a suitable environment. Living in a tropical country can provide that advantage – umbrella plants thrive all year round.

But, if this is not the case, then there are a few points you need to consider before answering the question: can umbrella plants survive outside?

potted umbrella plant on a table

What conditions do umbrella plants need to live outside?

Taking care of a Schefflera plant outdoors means that there are a few criteria you have to meet. An umbrella plant can grow fast and strong rather quickly.

As we already mentioned, they are very easy to maintain, but now, we are looking deeper into the necessary conditions to make taking care of this plant a breeze!

Some of the most important conditions include the following:

  • Exposure to the sun
  • Humidity + temperature
  • Water
  • Soil + fertilizer
  • Large space

Exposure to the sun

Sun exposure is incredibly important if you are looking for ways to take proper care of your umbrella plant. It tends to thrive in sunny conditions with partial shade.

If you place it under the sun but still get some afternoon shade – you have done a good job!

If you leave it under direct sun, you will notice some burnt and yellow leaves.

In terms of Schefflera cold tolerance, the plant can get damaged by low temperatures, mainly due to its tropical nature. For that reason, do not put in an environment below 40°F.

Once you take the plant inside, give it the light it needs. When you notice that one side looks better than the other, all you need to do is rotate it.

It might feel like a slow process for the plant to grow indoors, but you’ll be happy to know it is healthy.

close up of umbrella plant leaves

Humidity, temperature

Thankfully, an outdoor umbrella tree or an indoor umbrella plant will not have you thinking about humidity.

Wherever you are, the humidity level should be just about enough for this plant.

An exception to this rule only applies to those who live in arid locations. If you do, then remember to mist the leaves now and again.

Tropical climates make these plant grow like crazy. But knowing what type of umbrella plant you have is key.

A decorative umbrella plant requires mid to warm temperatures, while an all-green leaf variant prefers the cool temperatures better.


The age-old question – can umbrella plants survive outside also revolves around water too. Like all living things, it needs its fair share of water.

However, the umbrella plant has varying water requirements depending on the environment in which it grows.

Generally, give it enough water but allow the soil to try out before watering them again. The soil should be moist during the growing season and not so moist during winter.

When in doubt, remember that less is more. It is always better to under-water your plant than overwater it.

In contrast, more frequent watering may be needed if the temperature tends to lean on the higher side and the plant is drying out more quickly.

umbrella plant cutting

Soil and fertilizer

Fertilizer and soil that supports the health of the plant is a basic necessity, no matter the type. Naturally, it is an important aspect in this case too.

A soil that provides good drainage is imperative if you want your outdoor umbrella tree to thrive. The same thing applies to indoor plants too.

If you are thinking outdoors, then make sure the planting area does not flood quickly and is not wet all the time. If this happens, then the root will most likely rot.

Fertilizers are optional, though a recommended course of action. Applying a thicker layer of compost is good, especially when done in spring.

Use a pot that provides proper drainage for the indoor plant – opt for nothing less. Once you notice it is overgrowing the pot, then transplant it into a bigger container. You can use standard fertilizer.

A large area

A Schefflera plant can live outside, especially if it has enough room to grow. When found in its natural habitat, it can reach an impressive height!

Give it some space to breathe, move, and grow. You should not have this issue if the umbrella plant is outside, however, if it is inside, then make sure to place it in an area that is well-lit and large.

Also, as above, so below – give the roots some space to grow! When taking care of your indoor plant, make sure you place it in a large container, allowing the roots to spread.

The bottom line is that we can answer the question “can umbrella plants survive outside?” with a strong yes!

Depending on where you live, you may face a few challenges to do that, however, it is not an impossible task.

We advise you to read through this once again, and do it carefully, so you take in all the necessary information before you decide where to place your Shefflera plant.

If you found this subject interesting and want to dive deep into the subject of umbrella plants, then you can download our free PDF umbrella plant care guide. Get all the useful information there and enjoy taking care of your plant!

Printable Umbrella Plant care guide

Join the (free!) KeepYourPlantsAlive+ community to access this exclusive printable plant care guide! Once you sign up, you can right click & save the JPG care guide. Or keep scrolling for more!

Umbrella Plant plant care guide

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