Schefflera 'Dwarf Umbrella Plant'
Schefflera is a large genus of tropical plants that includes two species that make wonderful tropical houseplants. The larger Schefflera actinophylla (sometimes called the umbrella plant or umbrella tree) features long, shiny, oval green leaves that droop gracefully from a central stalk, resembling an umbrella. A mature Schefflera might have 12 to 16 leaflets from a single stalk, while an immature Schefflera is more likely to have four to six. Schefflera arboricola (sometimes called dwarf Schefflera) features smaller, glossy leaves, sometimes with creamy variegation. Other than the smaller size, it looks very similar to its taller cousin.
Hardy in USDA hardiness zone 10 to 12, Schefflera plants are usually grown indoors for most of the year in cooler climates but can be taken outdoors for the warmer months, where they will thrive alongside other tropical plants. However, Schefflera plants typically have to be grown outdoors to display their show of long red, white, or pink tentacle-like flowers. Plants grown indoors rarely produce flowers.
Schefflera plants are fast-growing plants, especially if planted outdoors, where they can add three feet per year. Indoor plants are slower-growing, especially if you keep them somewhat confined in a tight-fitting container. If you are planting a Schefflera in a warm climate garden, they are best planted in spring or fall when the weather is not blazing hot.