What causes Rubber Tree Plant Leaves To Fall Off?
The answer to this question depends upon which part of the leaf is affected. If it’s just the top part, then there are no symptoms at all. The problem may not occur until later when the rest of the leaf begins to fall off. Other times, if a portion of the leaf falls off completely, then there could be problems with other parts of your plants life cycle such as flowers or fruit production.
If you have ever wondered why some trees don’t produce fruits while others do, then this is the reason. Some trees simply aren’t strong enough to bear fruit on their own. They need help from other parts of the plant to get them started producing fruit.
So what does cause a rubber tree leaf to turn yellow?
It’s probably due to too much light exposure during the day time or too little at night. Too much light exposure occurs when you leave your house at night and walk outside. You’re exposing yourself to sunlight, which is known to cause damage to plants. Plants like rubber trees need bright lights during the day so they can make energy from the sun. When you go inside at night, you’re blocking out most of the light and reducing the amount of energy available for plants.
Too little light exposure happens when you keep your windows closed all day long. This prevents the sun from reaching your rubber tree plant during the day.
So in order to have a healthy rubber tree plant, it needs bright lights during the day and little or no light exposure at night. These plants are also drawn towards heat, so try placing yours close to heaters or radiators.
What are the Symptoms of a Dying Rubber Tree?
As we’ve already mentioned, the most obvious sign of a dying rubber tree is when the leaves begin to fall off. This process is called defoliation and can occur for a number of reasons such as:
Not Enough Light – During the day, your rubber tree needs bright lights in order to photosynthesise and make energy. During the night it needs to rest, so keep the lights off.
Overwatering – Keep the soil of your rubber tree slightly moist and don’t forget to let the pot dry out a little bit between waterings.
Underfeeding – It might seem counter intuitive, but rubber trees also need nutrition in order to produce those lovely flowers and fruits. Try using a plant fertilizer every once in a while.
Healthy Leaves Falling Off Rubber Tree?
Some plants are just prone to dropping their leaves. There isn’t really anything you can do about it and it’s perfectly natural, so don’t worry. It doesn’t necessarily mean that something is wrong with your plant. You might see some new shoots coming out of the main stem of your rubber tree, which means that it’s working as it should.
See the picture to the right for an example of this. If you look closely, you can see that there are some green leaves coming out of the red ones at the top. These are called ‘shoots’ and they are exactly what they sound like. New shoots mean that your plant is growing and developing as it should be.
It’s worth watering them more frequently so that they have a better chance of survival in their new environment.
My Rubber Tree Has Too Many Yellow Leaves
If you find that your rubber tree has too many yellow leaves and not enough green ones, then it could be due to a number of different reasons. It might be that the plant is trying to tell you that it needs more sunlight. As mentioned before, rubber trees need lots of bright lights during the day to make them produce energy from the sun. It might also be lacking enough water or nutrition.
Try pruning your rubber tree to remove some of the yellow leaves and see if that helps it to start producing healthy green ones in their place.
My Rubber Tree Has No Leaves At All
If your rubber tree has no leaves at all, then you’re probably wondering what you did wrong. The first thing you need to do is check the roots to make sure that they haven’t become rotten or infected in any way. Sometimes, if you’ve overwatered your rubber tree, the roots can become mushy and infected. If this is the case, then you need to cut away all of the mushy roots and make sure that the soil is well drained so that it doesn’t retain too much water.
If the roots are perfectly fine, then it might be due to a lack of nutrients in the soil. Try adding some general plant food and see if this helps to encourage new leaf growth. If that doesn’t work, then you need to assess other factors such as the amount of light your plant receives and the ambient temperature. Try moving it to a different location or changing the lights that it receives and see if that makes a difference.
If you’re still getting no results, you’ll have to start pruning away leaves and shoots and re-potting the plant until it takes.
A lot of fuss has been made about how difficult it is to get a rubber tree to thrive in your home, but it really isn’t as difficult as people say.
As long as you keep your rubber tree potted in well draining soil and keep an eye on the overall moisture of the soil, you shouldn’t have any problems. Keep it well lit and keep an eye on the overall health of the plant and you shouldn’t have any issues. A rubber tree is a great addition to any household if you want to try your hand at planting something from nature.
Sources & references used in this article:
First record of Corynespora leaf fall disease of Hevea rubber tree in China by P Jinji, Z Xin, Q Yangxian, X Yixian, Z Huiqiang… – Australasian Plant …, 2007 – Springer
South American Leaf Blight of the Rubber Tree (Hevea spp.): New Steps in Plant Domestication using Physiological Features and Molecular Markers by R Lieberei – Annals of botany, 2007 – academic.oup.com
Physiological and molecular responses to drought stress in rubber tree (Hevea brasiliensis Muell. Arg.) by L Wang – Plant Physiology and Biochemistry, 2014 – Elsevier
Hevein: an antifungal protein from rubber-tree (Hevea brasiliensis) latex by J Van Parijs, WF Broekaert, IJ Goldstein, WJ Peumans – Planta, 1991 – Springer
Population dynamics of the rubber plantation litter beetle Luprops tristis, in relation to annual cycle of foliage phenology of its host, the para rubber tree, Hevea … by TK Sabu, KV Vinod, T Meehan – Journal of Insect Science, 2009 – academic.oup.com
A pathological survey of the Para rubber tree (Hevea brasiliensis) in the Amazon Valley by JR Weir – 1926 – books.google.com
Pathogenic Adaptations Revealed by Comparative Genome Analyses of Two Colletotrichum spp., the Causal Agent of Anthracnose in Rubber Tree by OF Cook – 1903 – US Government Printing Office