Umbrella plant losing leaves like crazy on back side (schefflera arboricola)

RyanBRZ

Avid Member
I've had the plant for around a month now and while the entire front and top are holding up, the back side that is facing the wall and under the shade of my pothos plants has lost almost all leaves. Do you think it's still in shock from the re-pot done when I first received the plant? or is the lack of light to those leaves making the plant realize it does not need the leaves anymore? I'd love to avoid getting a light for the back side. Any help is appreciated.
 

celeste_knitter

Chameleon Enthusiast
UVB is great for the Chameleon, but does not help the plant. There are many options ranging from a clamp fixture with an led pool spot light 6500k or a 2 bulb linear with 1 uvb & 1 plant bulb
 

RyanBRZ

Avid Member
UVB is great for the Chameleon, but does not help the plant. There are many options ranging from a clamp fixture with an led pool spot light 6500k or a 2 bulb linear with 1 uvb & 1 plant bulb
Thank you! I at first thought it was over-watering so I tried to divert the water that drips down from my mistings into my umbrella pot to reduce the amount of water it gets. But then I realized I lose no leaves in the front and top which gets light from my T5 bulb so I think its safe to attribute the issue to no light.

Can you suggest a bulb for me to use, preferably LED if possible. And would I just aim it directly at the area that doesn't get light, or the entire plant?

Would something like this work without harming (or pissing off) my cham? I bought one of these last year for my indoor plants.

https://www.taotronics.com/TT-GL20-LED-Plant-Lamp-Hydroponic-Grow-Light-Bulbs.html
 
Last edited:

JoshD49

Chameleon Enthusiast
I have had the same species of umbrella your talking about but have not seen the leaves fall off untill I put it outside. I have the same light setup as well so I'm not sure why you are seeing this problem unless it's due to over watering like the others have said. Once I put the plant outside and it got real sunlight the plant just fell apart for some reason. Did you replant it when you bought it? One thing I did was use organic indoor soil for it as I talked to the employee at the store and told him the lights I planned to use and he said this was the way to go. Honestly I would have believed what ever he said because I never paid attention to plants or how to keep them alive until I got a cham and wanted to learn for him haha.
 

HiddenHerps

Member
The UVB bulb will keep your chameleon healthy, but not so much your plants! Add a 6500K plant light and you'll see a world of difference. Unless, however, you problem is overwatering - which is a big cause of leaves falling off much of the time
Also underwatering. If they get too dry they will also drop leaves to conserve. Is the dirt often dry. They are water loving plants and like to stay evenly moist but not boggy.
 

dshuld

Chameleon Enthusiast
That 6500k bulb @celeste_knitter linked you too would grow the crap out of your umbrella. For the price it's pretty hard to beat for plug and play and getting the light sent down to the plant. I would suggest reading through her cage build thread or my Lola cage build thread for some cautions I gave on using it though ;).
 

RyanBRZ

Avid Member
Would that go up top aiming down alongside my main lights, or at the bottom aimed at the bare area? Can you point me to one of those threads or provide more info? I'm getting desperate, I don't want this plant to die on me. It's getting freezing in the northeast, I don't think a replacement plant would survive shipping.
 
Last edited:

dshuld

Chameleon Enthusiast
Yes, place it up top pointing down. I would suggest putting the bulb 2 inches above the cage roughly, depending on dome used it may sit that height anyway, and check temps below the bulb. These do emit a fair amount of heat and the internal fans blow down. I can tell you the four I have produce temps of 84.1 at the surface 10" below the bulbs with room ambients of 70.
 

RyanBRZ

Avid Member
But wouldn't most of the light be blocked by stuff thats in the way, aka 2 pothos? What about putting it off to the side aiming diagonal down, right at the bare area of the plant?

Or is this thing powerful enough that aiming straight town will guarantee growth? Any harm to the cham, aside from heat?

And did you buy this specifically for plant growth, or is this your basking bulb?

Will I be good with just 1 of these pool bulbs to revive my umbrella?
 
Top Bottom