Variegated Rubber Tree

By May 25, 2021Blog Post
Blog Post
2001 S. Chambers Road Aurora CO. 80014 Map

You might have seen the Mile Marker boards that parents create for their children – they highlight things like the height, weight, likes, and dislikes of their child at various stages of life. We at Nick’s Garden Center think Plant Parents should have something like this for their Plant Babies as well! Our Plant Parent Chalkboard Photos and blogs will provide you with an overview of what each plant needs in order to “grow up” happy and healthy!

A relatively new plant to the scene, the variegated rubber tree, or Ficus Tineke, is making a “splash” with its colorful, watercolor-esque foliage! From the family Moraceae, this plant can grow to be around 2-10 feet tall when grown indoors depending on care and conditions. Its leaves are a pointed oval shape, but the real show is found in the colors of the foliage. The waxy, large, green leaves appear to have been splashed by pink, yellow, and white, and the colors extend even into the center vein of the leaves. These leaves can grow to be up to 12 inches long and 5 inches wide.

While Ficus Tineke does share a family link to Ficus Lyrata (Fiddle Leaf Fig), this particular Ficus is not quite as finicky as the Fiddle Leaf. Ficus Tineke is not pet safe, but it is considered beneficial for cleaning the air indoors. Try to wear gloves if you need to prune your plant, as the milky fluid inside the leaves can irritate skin. Ficus Tineke prefers bright, indirect sunlight, and temperatures above 55 degrees Fahrenheit. It can tolerate lower light, but brighter light will bring more of the plant’s signature variegation of colors. Plant Ficus Tineke in a well-draining soil, using a well-draining pot, to help avoid soggy soil at the bottom of the pot.

Water Ficus Tineke after the soil has been allowed to mostly dry out. Use the “Drench and Drain” method to water this plant, as well. Allow a stream of water to flow through the soil, and once the water is turned off, allow any excess water to drain away. If your pot does not have good drainage, use a Moisture Meter and take care when watering to avoid over watering the plant. Ficus Tineke will not tolerate over-watering, so take care to avoid soggy soil. This plant prefers some humidity, so consider a humidifier if you live in a drier area. If you start to see brown crispy edges on the leaves of your plant, this is generally an indication that the plant needs more humidity on its leaves, not that it needs more water in its soil.

Keep Ficus Tineke away from drafts, heating or cooling vents, and doors or windows that are often open. It prefers a steady environment and even temperatures and humidity levels. In general, unlike its cousin, the Fiddle Leaf Fig, Ficus Tineke is fairly easy to care for. For that reason, we feel it’s well suited for the beginner Plant Parent. It may not do as well for those who travel and cannot keep an eye on the plant regularly, but in general care for this plant is relatively easy.

Happy Plant Parenting!


Author Nicks

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