These beautiful plants are considered “old fashioned”, as they were first popularized in the 19th century, but there is nothing not to love about them! They are striking, attractive and great to have around the place – but how to care for Abutilon plants? Let’s look into this together!
What You'll Learn Today
How To Care For Abutilon Plants
This plant, also known as a Flowering Maple, is a native to Brazil, and is also found in Southern and Central South America.
As you may have guessed from this, Abutilon likes full sun. These beauties like to be kept warm, and they won’t like to be kept in the dark.
This being said, your Abutilon can also benefit from light shade in the hottest parts of the day, to prevent drooping.
These plants need moist, well draining soil in order to thrive – they won’t like heavy soil that can cause the roots to get waterlogged.
A bit of pruning never goes amiss – these plants tend to grow quite leggy, so pinching off the tops of the branches will help them grow bushier.
Take care if you decide to move your Abutilon; they are sensitive to temperature fluctuations and may start dropping leaves.
Try not to overwater your Abutilon – let the soil dry out between waterings then give it a good drink to avoid damaging the roots.
This is a good video showing you some of the best ways to care for your Abutilon:
Is Abutilon A Houseplant?
Obviously, all plants started out life living and growing in the wild, but some thrive very well as indoor plants. Luckily for you, Abutilon is one of these!
They like to be grown in full sun, so as long as you have a spot in your house that offers this, Abutilon will make a great addition to your indoor jungle.
These plants can also cope with being kept warmer than some other houseplants, as they are native to hot areas – just be sure to watch out for sudden temperature changes.
This plant will also appreciate a little bit of shade in the hottest parts of the day; this will prevent it from drooping and wilting.
You can either buy one of these pretty plants ready grown, or you can take cuttings from an outdoor Abutilon to bring into the house.
As well as being beautiful, they are also not known to be toxic, meaning they are a great addition to your houseplant menagerie.
One thing to bear in mind is that, as a houseplant, your Abutilon will not need as much sunlight or water in the winter, as it will go dormant.
What Is The Best Fertilizer For Abutilon?
Although not particularly “hungry”, Abutilon will benefit from a little extra boost in the form of fertilizer, especially in the active summer months.
You should feed it around once a fortnight, with a balanced water-soluble fertiliser that is diluted to 50%.
Go for a fertiliser that is balanced – a ration of 20-20-20 is perfect for these plants and will give them the help they need.
During peak flowering times, you can also use a feed that is designed to enhance blooms, and the feeding schedule is the same.
Plants that put a lot of energy into flowering need more Phosphorous, and you can easily find a specific flowering fertilizer in any gardening store.
Drop the fertilising completely in the winter; the plant doesn’t need it and too much can cause a build up of salts in the soil.
Here is a good article explaining the ins and outs and ups and downs of fertilizing your plants.
Why Is My Abutilon Drooping?
A drooping plant is usually trying to communicate to you that it is not entirely happy, so if you notice your Abutilon drooping then you should look into reasons why.
- Too much sun. These plants like it bright, but a full day of full sun can cause them some damage 0 try to offer them some shade in the hottest parts of the day.
- Too much water. Overwatering can cause major issues with root rot, and can even kill the plant, so if you have been excessively watering then it’s time to dry your plant out a bit.
- Bug infestation. Abutilon are fairly resistant to pests, but they can be attacked by scale bugs and aphids – just keep an eye out for signs of insect invasion, and treat any that you find.
- Not enough nutrients. These plants do like a bit of extra feeding now and then, so if you spot your Abutilon drooping it might be time to reach for the fertilizer!
- Shock. Abutilon doesn’t like sudden changes in temperature, so be careful if the weather suddenly changes or if you are moving them about.
- The wrong soil. Abutilon likes a neutral to acidic soil; you will notice that it is not thriving if its growing medium is alkaline.
Can Abutilon Grow In Full Sun?
These plants are native to the Americas, and as such they are used to hot, dry weather with plenty of sunshine.
They will be happiest growing in a full sun position – whether that be in your garden or in a pot in your house.
The only thing to be aware of is that too much sun can cause them some damage – they do need a little shade!
If you are growing your Abutilon indoors then you should find it an East facing window, where it will get the majority of light but not a full day’s sun.
If your Abutilon is in your garden, planting it next to something that will offer it a little shade in the hottest part of the day is ideal.
Abutilon Key Facts
|Well draining, fertile soil, neutral to acidic
|Bright, warm sunshine. No colder than -5 degrees C
|Water once a week, twice monthly in winter
|Feed every fortnight using a balanced, water soluble fertiliser diluted to 50%
|Late June to October
|Scale insects, red spider mites
|3 – 9 feet
Now that you have a better idea of how to care for your Abutilon, you can enjoy their beautiful leaves and interesting flowers.
Keeping your Abutilon happy and healthy is easier than you might imagine, as you can hopefully now see. Follow our tips, and enjoy your new plant!