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How to Care for a Ming Tree Houseplant

The Ming aralia (Polyscias fruticosa) is an ornamental shrub that is easy to maintain indoors or outdoors in spring and summer. Ming trees have thick, woody stalks with dark green leaves branching out on the top. The tree grows vertically rather than sideways like other plants. Ming trees can grow several feet tall.

Use a medium of one part peat moss, garden soil, course sand and a dusting of lime when or if the plant needs to be re-potted. The container should be at least 6 inches in diameter with a drainage hole in the bottom. Ming trees do not have a deep or wide root system, so a smaller pot works well. If re-potting the Ming, do it in February or March.

Place the Ming tree in a window with indirect sunlight. The east, west or north windows are ideal. The best temperature for the Ming is above 60 degrees Fahrenheit, but a short period of time with temperatures of 40 degrees Fahrenheit can be tolerated.

Use a drainage tray with gravel underneath the container to catch the excess water. The water collected will help generate humidity around the Ming. Water the tree once a week with warm tap water when the soil is moderately dry. Ming trees do not like soggy roots.

Fertilize the Ming tree once a month during the growing season from spring to the end of summer. Use a high nitrate fertilizer such as 12-10-10 (nitrogen-phosphate-potassium) slow release granules during the growing season and a 2-10-10 slow release fertilizer during the winter season. Follow the application directions on the package as to how much to use.

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