Floridata Plant Encyclopedia

A Floridata Plant Profile 102 Schefflera actinophylla

Common Names: brassaia, octopus tree, umbrella tree Family: Araliaceae (ginseng Family)


The schefflera is a slim upright tree is made up of multiple trunks, each topped with a small crown of large showy leaves. The compound leaves form an umbrella shape rosette which gives the tree one of its common names. Ten to fifteen stalks of bright red flowers appear in summer and are followed by round dark berries.


Schefflera actinophylla is native to Australia. A common landscaping plant in frost free areas like south Florida and Hawaii. This tropical tree has become a popular indoor houseplant everywhere!


Light: Full sun or shade. Moisture: Prefers rich moist soil but is adaptable. Hardiness: USDA Zones 10 - 11. Propagation: Seeds, easy to increase by cuttings.


Use for screens, windbreaks, hedges, specimens, street plantings, and patios. A popular container plant for use indoors and out. Used extensively in south Florida along freeways and turnpikes. Trim to one trunk for a more tree-like specimen with additional height.


This graceful, showy plant always makes a good impression. It's versatile and is seldom bothered by pests. Schefflera is a mass market item and is available almost everywhere for a reasonable price.

Jack Scheper 6/7/97

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Schefflera species profiled on Floridata:

Schefflera actinophylla

( brassaia, octopus tree, umbrella tree )

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