How To Prune An Umbrella Plant: Step By Step Guide For Beginners

Umbrella plants, also known as Schefflera Arboricola or dwarf umbrella trees, are beautiful and popular houseplants that can grow up to 8 feet tall. These plants have large, glossy leaves that resemble an open umbrella. To keep your plant healthy and beautiful, it is important to prune it regularly. Pruning is essential for maintaining the shape of the plant, controlling its growth, removing any dead or damaged branches and encouraging new growth.

Pruning Tools:

Before you start pruning your umbrella plant, you need to gather all the necessary tools such as a pair of sharp pruners or shears that are clean and sterile. Dirty pruning tools can transfer diseases from one plant to another which could be harmful to your beloved indoor tree.

When Should You Prune Your Umbrella Plant?

It’s best to prune your Schefflera in early spring before new growth appears but if you notice any dead or diseased leaves then they should be removed immediately regardless of what time of year it is. Pruning during this period will encourage more branching resulting in a bushier-looking plant.

How Much Can You Cut?

The amount you should cut depends on how much space you have available for your plant. For example: If there isn’t enough room for a tall tree-like structure then cutting back some branches may help make it look fuller and reduce its height without harming the overall health of the plant.

On average about one-third of foliage can safely be removed at once without causing damage so always try not to go overboard when pruning scheffleras since they might become stressed if too much foliage gets cut away at once

Where To Cut:

To maintain its size while still promoting healthy new growth use scissors (or pruning shears) to snip off individual stems just above where two leaves meet on each branch (known as an internode). Avoid cutting too close otherwise damage may occur leaving them susceptible infections caused by fungus or bacteria.

If you want to cut back a branch, then it is best to make the cut just above a node where new growth will sprout. Cutting at an angle can help prevent water from collecting on top of the cut and potentially promoting bacterial growth which may harm your plant.

Spotting Deadwood:

Dead branches on umbrella plants are often easy to spot as they will have no leaves or foliage growing from them. If they snap off quickly when pulled gently or show signs of fungal infections like dark spots, white powdery patches, yellowing leaves, etc., then their removal should be done immediately with sterile pruners.


To keep your Schefflera looking its best and healthy for years to come pruning really is essential! By removing dead/diseased areas while shaping its overall form you’ll be rewarded with a more attractive indoor tree that grows fuller over time without becoming too tall. Remember always keep your pruners clean and sterilized between uses makes sure not to prune too aggressively since this could stress out your schefflera causing damage that might compromise its health in the long run.