Home Plants Aralia Fabian – Polyscias Scutellaria ‘Fabian’

Aralia Fabian – Polyscias Scutellaria ‘Fabian’

by gardeningit
Aralia Fabian

Aralia Fabian, having a thick woody stem and thin slender shoots growing along the full length of the branches, is a magnificent tree plant from the Araliaceae family that gives an outdoorsy look to the indoors. Its woody stump is what makes this plant a stunning bonsai addition to homes. Fabian has flat, green, oval leaves that have purplish undersides. It grows upright and has compact branches. It can be placed in any corner of the room inside a home or workspace.

Common Names

  • Milkwort ‘Fabian’
  • Shield aralia ‘Fabian’
  • Plum aralia ‘Fabian’
  • Dinner plate aralia ‘Fabian’
  • Polyscias Scutellaria ‘Fabian’


  • Family: Araliaceae
  • Subfamily: Aralioideae
  • Genus: Aralia

About the Genus Aralia

Aralia is a genus of angiosperms having about 68 species of trees, shrubs, and herbaceous plants. This genus includes both types of plants: evergreen and deciduous. The plants from this genus are native to the mountainous woodlands of Asia and American. Most of them are edible and are grown for human consumption.

Origin and Distribution

Aralia Fabian plant was originally discovered in South America, India, and on the islands of Polynesia. It is endemic to the Pacific Islands.

Aralia Fabian Features

Foliage and Stem

Polyscias Fabian has flattened leaves whose sides are a little curved. These leaves are deeply-veined and green in color. However, their undersides are maroon to purple in shade. These leaves grow all along the length of the woody stump. The thin branches of Aralia Fabian also bear clusters of white flowers, but these flowers only bloom in wildlife habitats.


This greenish shrub is an evergreen plant that keeps its leaves all year round. It does not shed its leaves in fall just because every other species is doing so. It only sheds its leaves when they are old enough and are consuming extra energy.


Fabian stump is a woody plant that attains a height of 3 feet. It grows erect in a columnar container. If grown indoors and cared for properly, it can attain a maximum height of 4 feet. You can also place gravel beneath its soil to support its upright growth.

Temperature Tolerance

This stunning plant is a tropical tree that prefers warmer temperatures. Fabian is not tolerant of too much heat and too much cold. It cannot survive outdoors in winters. It has glossy, green leaves that are prone to chilly injuries in winters, so it is better to keep it away from cold air drafts.

Humidity Tolerance

It is of surprise that most tropical plants are fond of high humidity levels. In the same way, Aralia Fabian also prefers to be grown in a humid environment. It can tolerate any higher level of humidity. But, keep in mind that the humidity levels inside the room must not fall below 30%; it is not tolerant of low humidity levels. Low humidity will lead to droopy leaves and dull foliage.

Drought Resistance

Polyscias Fabian is a drought-resistant indoor plant. It can tolerate low-water availability. Its thick woody stump can retain a considerable amount of water and then use it in harsh conditions such as droughts.

Disease and Pest Resistance

Spider mites, mealybugs, and aphids are three pests that attack this plant. You can prevent these insects from inhabiting your plant by misting its branches and leaves often. Rubbing the foliage with a cotton pad dipped into rubbing alcohol is also a great trick to get rid of these pests.

The only disease that affects this plant is edema. In this disease, the plant takes up more water than it is transpiring from its leaves. Cork spots are a sign that your plant is suffering from edema. Its treatment involves varying its watering frequency.


This stunning plant might not be a fast grower, but it still grows at a moderate rate. It reaches its maximum height in about 2-3 years. You can increase its growth rate by placing it under bright sunlight. It grows properly in the USDA plant hardiness growth zones of 9-11.


Aralia Fabian is not pet-friendly. Its leaves contain harmful chemicals such as oxalates, glycosides, or alkaloid lycorine. These chemicals induce swelling of the lips, mouth, and throat. It can also cause breathing problems. All these symptoms also appear if a human ingests its leaves accidentally. It is better to keep your toddlers away from this toxic, but otherwise, lovely plant.


Polyscias fabian is a low-maintenance plant. You need not worry if you have a black thumb; this plant is so easy-to-grow. If you know the basics of growing a plant indoors, you will not face any difficulty growing this plant inside your home.

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This shrubby plant goes dormant in winters. During this resting period, keep this plant away from the sun and reduce its watering frequency; let it rest completely. Your plant can also go dormant during the growing season if you do not care for it properly. Temperature changes and overwatering can lead your plan to irregular dormancy.

Aralia Fabian Care

Aralia Fabian’s care includes placing it in a well-lit spot, in a south-facing window, and in a room where the humidity levels are above 75%. It must be watered once a week with lukewarm water. It must be grown in well-drained, organic, and slightly alkaline soil, having a pH of 7.6-8. 5.

Water Requirements

This magnificent plant needs to be watered only when its soil is half dry. Aralia Fabian has a shallow root system, so its roots do not need to be watered every now and then for healthy growth. It is better if you give it a little rest between waterings. This practice will prevent roots from getting root rot. Water this beautiful plant only to a point where its soil remains moist and not too damp. You can either place its pot over a pebble tray, so it is not sitting in water. For better growth, add lukewarm water to your plant. Tap water will also do fine only if you leave it overnight for the minerals to settle down.

Soil Requirements

Aralia Fabian grows best in well-draining, slightly alkaline soil. The pH of the Aralia Fabian soil must be kept between 7.9 and 8.5. If you have a slightly acidic or neutral potting mix, you can increase its pH through some simple tricks. You can add a little amount of clay or limestone into the potting mix to increase the soil’s pH level. Adding wood ashes to the soil will also work.

This stunning plant has a Woody stump that requires a stronger root system to stand straight. A little perlite added to the soil will make a great difference. Perlite will not only strengthen the root system but will also increase the aeration of the soil.


A well-lit spot, receiving bright indirect light, is best for the placement of the Aralia Fabian plant. This Japanese tree adapts to a wide range of light exposures. It can also do well under fluorescent light. An hour or two of morning and evening sun will do magic on its foliage and keep its leaves green and shiny.

You can place this shrubby tree in a south-facing window, where it receives an adequate amount of light exposure. It can be placed in a wide range of places inside a home. You can either place it in a well-lit patio, or on a windowsill, in the corner of your living room, or even in your greenhouse.

Temperature Requirements

Aralia Fabian prefers a warmer and humid environment. It grows best in a temperature range of 18-29°C. This temperature is not difficult to maintain in houses of tropical regions because this is the range of average room temperature. However, if you live in a colder region, you will have to care for it a little bit more. It can grow properly at a temperature as low as 15°C; any temperature lower than this will not be appreciated by this leafy tree. In winters, it should never be left outdoors.


This lovely tree from the Araliaceae family prefers humid surroundings. It needs a high level of moisture in the air around it. The humidity around this plant must be kept above 75%. This level can be achieved by placing the plant over a pebble tray or by misting it often. You can also group it with other shrubby plants to increase the humidity levels.

Just to be on the safer side, never let the humidity fall below 30%. If this happens, you will notice droopy leaves. This will be a warning sign that your plant wants extra moisture in its surroundings.


Polyscias Fabian needs to be fertilized once every month. This feeding frequency must be followed in spring and fall. However, during winters, when the plant is not actively growing, it does not need to be fed this often; you should cut down its feeding frequency during the dormant period.

The regular slow-release fertilizer will do fine for its proper growth. This slow-release fertilizer is actually really strong. If you feed the plant without diluting the fertilizer, its roots might get burnt. Always dilute the fertilizer beforehand. The proper way to do so is to add 1-2 tablespoons of fertilizer to a gallon of water and then feed your plant.

Grooming and Pruning

Most people are afraid of pruning their plants because they think it might damage their showing foliage. However, this is not true. Occasional pruning is necessary for grooming the plant. Aralia Fabian plant also requires to be pruned for healthy growth. Minimal pruning helps to avoid a leggy appearance. It also enhances branching and leaf growth. If you are pruning your plant for the first time, there is no need to panic. Even if you cut a healthy branch accidentally, it will grow back eventually. All you have to do is use a sharp pair of scissors or shears and cut any extra or dead leaves off the plant.


After every two to three years, when your plant has outgrown its pot, it needs to be moved to a new and bigger pot. The plant must be moved in a pot that is about 2-3 inches deep and 2-4 inches wide than the previous one. Also, keep in mind that the new pot must have a drainage hole at its bottom so that the plant will not be sitting in standing water. It is best to re-pot your plant in spring, so its growth rate enables it to quickly adapt to the new medium. Also, look for an outgrowth of the roots above the soil. If you see any protruding roots at the surface of the soil, re-pot your plant right away.


Propagating an Aralia Fabian tree is just as easy as propagating any other basic plant. You can propagate it through two methods.

You can grow a new Aralia plant from its seeds and can get the seeds of this angiosperm from any nearby plant store. All you will have to do is sow the seeds into a proper potting mix and watch the tree grow from scratch.

You can also propagate this plant through its stem cuttings. Take 10 inches of soft stem and plant it into moist soil in a separate pot. Keep watering it once a week and place it in a well-lit spot.

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