Rubber trees, formally ficus elastica, can be enjoyed as either medium-sized house plants or grown to become focal point, beautiful indoor trees. If you’re patient enough to grow your own, plants that start out younger when you buy them adapt better to indoor living than starting with a more mature plant. Keeping the plants in small pots will restrict their growth, if you want to keep them smaller.
Care instructions: Rubber plants like bright light and a lot of it, but not direct sunlight. A sunny spot shielded by a sheer curtain is often perfect for rubber plants. You can tell if your rubber plant needs more light if it becomes leggy, its leaves lose their luster, and lower leaves fall off.
Rubber plants’ water needs vary according to season: In the growing season (summer), the plant should be kept moist. This includes wiping the leaves with a damp cloth or even misting them. During the dormant season, your plant may only need water once or twice a month. Watch for droopy leaves, which indicate a need for more water. Leaves that turn yellow and brown and drop signal over-watering.