Money tree plants (Pachira aquatica) are surprisingly easy to grow, and make excellent houseplants. In this article, you’ll learn everything you need to know about proper money plant care, and how to troubleshoot common problems.
Known for their braided trunks, and delicate looking umbrella shaped leaves, money tree plants are very popular. They look like they’d be fussy and difficult to grow, but they’re actually pretty easy.
These lovely plants flourish with the proper care, and can grow to become large trees. They’re a great choice for beginners and experts alike!
Plus, if you want to try your hand at bonsai, pachira aquatica is the perfect specimen to start with. In this post, I will tell you all about how to care for a money tree plant.
Here’s what you’ll find in this detailed money plant care guide…
Information About Money Plants
There are two types of plants (that I know of) that have the nickname of “money plant”: crassula (aka: jade plant), and the pachira aquatica (aka: money tree plant).
This article is all about how to care for a money tree plant. So, if you’re looking for information on the other one, then go to this post instead… How To Care For A Jade Plant. Otherwise, keep reading!
Pachira Money Tree Plant Meaning
No, money plants don’t grow actual currency (wouldn’t that be nice!), but there is meaning behind the name.
Pachira aquatica got the nickname because they have a reputation for bringing luck and good fortune to their owners. This is one of the main reasons why I think they are the perfect office plant!
Maybe you’ve never heard the name, but you might recognize a money tree because it’s one of the most popular braided tree trunk plants.
Money Tree Benefits
As I already mentioned, benefits of money tree plants include bringing you good luck and financial prosperity.
They are also very popular in Feng Shui, because they are said to bring positive energy into the room where they’re growing. They’re commonly given as gifts for all of these reasons.
I’m not sure how they got such an amazing reputation, but I’m thinking about growing a lucky money tree plant in every room of my house!
Can A Money Tree Go Outside?
Yes, you can grow money trees outside as long as the weather is warm enough. Just be sure you bring it back inside before the temperature gets below 40 degrees F.
Outdoors, money trees can grow anywhere from sun to shade. But take extra care to gradually move it from the house to growing in full sun outside, or the leaves will burn.
If you decide to put it outdoors, then be sure that it’s in a pot with drainage holes so that it won’t drown when it rains.
Pachira Money Plant Care & Growing Instructions
Though they are pretty easy to grow, they do have some fairly specific requirements that need to be met in order to thrive. Follow these money tree plant care instructions for the best results.
Watering A Money Tree Plant
One of the key factors to successful money plant care is proper watering. They like water, but won’t tolerate wet soil for very long. Consistent over watering will cause root rot, and eventually kill the plant.
Check on them every week or two to see how wet the soil is. Allow it to dry slightly between waterings, but don’t let it dry out completely.
When it’s time to water, give it a good drink, and let the excess drain from the holes in the bottom of the pot. Make sure to empty the cache pot or drip tray so that the container is never sitting in water.
Money trees don’t need as much moisture during the winter as they do in the summer, so you can let the soil dry out a bit more.
If you have a hard time giving them the correct amount of water, I recommend buying a soil moisture gauge to help you get it right every time.
Money Tree Plant Humidity Requirements
Another important part of successful money plant care is humidity, which is especially critical during the winter months.
Heating our homes sucks the humidity out of the air, and that can be pretty tough on these sensitive plants.
There are a couple of ways to increase the humidity level around your money plant. Try running a humidifier near it, or put it on a pebble tray filled with water (don’t allow it to sit in the water though).
To help you maintain the proper humidity level, keep an indoor air moisture monitor nearby.
Money Tree Light Requirements
One of the reasons growing money plants indoors is so easy is because they aren’t super picky about lighting.
They will actually suffer if they get too much sun. Direct sunlight can burn their leaves, so keep it out of that south facing window.
They prefer bright, indirect sun. But they will adapt to lower light conditions indoors, especially during the winter.
Repotting Your Money Tree
Plan to repot into fresh soil every few years as a part of your regular money plant care routine. The best time to do it is spring or early summer.
When the time comes for repotting your money tree plant, make sure you choose the right sized container. Don’t use one that is too large, because that can cause issues with overwatering and root rot.
Money plants can be grown in very small pots, especially if you want to keep their size manageable. So choose a pot that’s only slightly larger than the one it was growing in before.
Related Post: How To Repot Plants: A Helpful Illustrated Guide
Best Potting Soil For Money Tree Plant
A general purpose potting soil will work fine for growing money trees. But, they will do best in a fast draining mix that also retains moisture.
If you don’t want to fuss with all of that, you can’t go wrong if you repot them using a bonsai potting soil mix.
Best Fertilizer For Money Plants
As part of your regular money plant care routine, you can feed them using a half dose of liquid houseplant fertilizer every couple of weeks during the spring and summer.
Stop fertilizing in early fall, and don’t feed your plant at all during the winter. Money trees can be sensitive to synthetic chemicals, so I recommend using organic products only.
Money Tree Houseplant Pest Control
Use a yellow sticky trap to help control flying insect pests until you’re able to get rid of them for good.
How To Prune A Money Tree
In general they don’t need to be trimmed, but regular pruning will keep your money tree plant smaller. New leaves grow back quickly, which is one reason why this plant is so appealing for bonsai.
It’s best to prune money trees in the spring or summer. You don’t really want to encourage new growth while the plant is resting during the winter.
Troubleshooting Money Plant Care Problems
Overwatering and leaf drop are two of the most common money tree care problems that people tend to have. Here’s how to troubleshoot the symptoms, and what to do about it.
- Why are the leaves on my money tree turning yellow? – It usually means you’re watering too much, and the plant is in danger of being overwatered. Allow the soil to dry more between waterings.
- Why are the leaves on my money tree turning brown? – Lack of humidity is usually what causes brown leaves. Raise the humidity level around the plant, and make sure it’s getting enough water. They are also sensitive to sudden temperature changes, and can suffer when exposed to hot or cold drafts. So keep them away from heat vents and drafty areas.
- Why are the leaves on my money tree falling off? – Money plants are a bit fussy about their location, and don’t like to be moved around. If you move them too much, the leaves will start dropping. So keep it where it is, and try not to move it. If you just brought the plant home, give it plenty of time to adjust.
Where To Buy A Money Plant
If you’re wondering where to buy money tree plants, check your local garden center. You should be able to find them in the houseplant section. Otherwise you could order one online.
Growing money trees is fun and rewarding. I’m not sure if it will actually bring you all of the benefits that I mentioned above, but it can’t hurt to try. Just be sure to follow these money plant care instructions, and you’l be good to go.
Do you struggle to keep your houseplants thriving during the long winter months? My Winter Houseplant Care eBook is perfect for you! It has everything you need to know to keep your indoor plants growing their best all year long. Download your copy today!
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Share your money plant care tips in the comments below.