Money Tree: Grow & Care for Pachira Aquatica

Written by Iris

Oct 13 2021

Money Tree: Grow & Care for Pachira Aquatica
Money Tree (Pachira Aquatica) is native to Costa Rica in Latin America, Australia and some small islands in the Pacific Ocean. Money Tree is a perennial evergreen shrub, and prefer warm, humid, sunny or slightly shaded environment. It is necessary to avoid sun exposure for Money Tree, otherwise it will wither and die. Money Tree is a popular potted plant. It can be sown when the temperature is above 20℃. The germination rate is quite high-compared with the bought cutting potted plant, the Money Tree planted by yourself is easier to maintain. Here are some guides about how to grow and care for Money Tree.

Where to Grow Money Tree

Indoor growers should find a slightly-humid spot with indirect sunlight. This is about perfect for the money tree plant to thrive.
Outdoor growers who're trying for a full-sized tree need to mimic wetlands. Your plant prefers swampy areas next to streams or rivers. If you can’t provide a stream or river, select an area that gets lots of water but occasionally dries out. Mixed sun and shade is best.
Money Tree (Pachira Aquatica) - one of the best indoor trees

When to Grow Money Tree (Pachira Aquatica)

If you're in USDA zones 10-12, you can plant outdoors once temperatures stay above 45 degrees at night. Money tree plant prefers temperatures of 65-75 degrees, and is cold-hardy to about 45. People who aren't in zones 10-11 (and some parts of 9) may want to keep their plants indoors year-round. If so, you can get started anytime. Remember that the plant's active growing season is from spring through summer.

How to Grow Money Tree (Pachira Aquatica)

Money tree cuttings are relatively easy to propagate into new plants by using a soilless rooting medium and a rooting hormone. You can purchase ready-made soilless mix from your local nursery or garden center, or you can make your own by blending equal parts peat moss or coconut coir, coarse sand or bark, vermiculite or perlite, and a small amount of fertilizer.
  • Gather rooting hormone, pruners, and small containers with drainage holes, and enough soilless rooting medium to fill the containers.
  • Fill the pots with rooting medium and water until moist.
  • Using a clean, sharp blade, cut a healthy six-inch section of branch with at least three leaf nodes from the mother plant. Snip the bottom few leaves off the cutting.
  • Dip the bottom end of the cutting in rooting hormone. Use a chopstick or pencil to poke a hole a few inches into the growing medium. Insert the cutting into the hole, and then gently pat the soil around the base of the cutting so it stands up on its own.
  •  Tent a clear plastic bag around the potted cutting, sticking chopsticks or pencils into the soilless medium to hold the sides of the bag away from the plant, if necessary. This will increase the humidity around your cutting.
  • Keep the potted Money Tree cutting out of direct sunlight, and be sure to keep the soil moist while you wait for it to root, which should take four weeks or so. Check progress with a gentle tug on the stem—when you feel resistance, your plant has rooted. At this point, remove the bag, and care for the new plant as usual.

How to Care for Money Tree (Pachira Aquatica)

Money Tree Lighting Requirements

Part of what makes the Money tree (Pachira aquatica) such an easy-care houseplant, is that it can handle just about any amount of indirect light. A Money Tree houseplant can do perfectly well near a bright, South-facing window or in a more removed corner or hallway where it receives low indirect light. This indoor plant needs to consistently receive bright indirect light in order to grow as quickly as it is capable of growing.

Money Tree Soil Care

Money tree plants can grow in many soil types. The primary need is soil that can drain off excess water with ease. Clay-like soils tend to become over-saturated and muddy. If your soil is clay-like, it’s best to amend it with lots of organic material or peat. Adding perlite will also help drainage. An ideal soil blend for your money tree plant is a peaty, loamy soil. It can have some sand content as well with no problem. While they can tolerate flooding in the wild for short times, it must drain quickly. Soil pH should be between 6.0 and 7.5, on the neutral range. They can tolerate both acidic and alkaline soils, but won’t have their best growth in those ranges.

Money Tree Watering

Water your Money tree (Pachira aquatica) when the top several inches of the soil are dry. Money Trees thrive with routine and deep watering, making this a great plant for anyone prone to over-watering. With that said, it's important to make sure your Money tree is planted in well draining soil and in a pot with drainage. As much as Money Trees like moisture, they don't like soggy roots. These indoor plants can store water in their trunks, allowing them to wait for an extended time between watering. Often, during the colder months it is normal for the Money Tree to need less frequent watering.

Money Tree Temperature & Humidity Care

Always provide a location that has good air circulation and moist air by creating a humidity tray to increase the local atmospheric saturation. Signs of an under-humid room consist of yellowing leaves, browning leaf tips and slowed growth. If this has happened to your specimen, instead of removing the browned leaf-edges, increase the local humidity with a pebble tray and frequently mist the foliage twice a week for the next month. Wait until the leaf's majority has browned or yellowed over before cutting it off. 15° - 32°C   (59° - 90°F) Must be grown indoors or under glass all year round. Never allow temperatures to dip below 15℃ or permanent damage may occur in the likes of flower loss, stunted growth and yellowed leaves.

Money Tree Fertilizer

Rountintely fertilize a Money Tree plant using a diluted complete liquid fertilizer. This will help the indoor plant gain height and push out new growth. It is not necessary to feed a Money Tree during the colder months when the plant is dormant.

Money Tree Pruning

Remove yellow or dying leaves, and plant debris to encourage better-growing conditions. While pruning Money Tree, always use clean scissors or shears to reduce the chance of bacterial and fungal diseases. Never cut through yellowed tissue as this may cause further damage in the likes of diseases or bacterial infections. Remember to make clean incisions as too-damaged wounds may shock the plant, causing weakened growth and a decline in health.
New growths must be braided regularly to maintain its eye-catching trunk; loosely tie the newly plaited stems until they become fully wooded in the following months. It's essential to weave the new growths whilst they are juvenile, as semi-wooded stems are less likely to bend. You can use chicken wire, jute, or even cable ties to fasten the new braids securely.

Money Tree Pests & Diseases Care

With the Guiana chestnut, you should be wary of all common house plant pests. From mealybugs to scales to aphids, any of them can become a problem. However, Money Tree isn’t any more attractive to pests than your other plants, so if the bugs aren't in your house already, you don't have to worry.
One thing that you do need to watch out for is gnats. Money Tree plant likes peaty soil and lots of moisture. This makes it the ideal breeding ground for the tiny, annoying flies. If you want to discourage gnats, use a fresh bag of peat moss when you repot your plant and consider using a sticky trap to catch them.
Money Tree (Pachira Aquatica)

Money tree (Pachira aquatica) FAQ

How can I make Money Tree flower?

Money Tree produces fruits so, naturally, it has to flower first. Unfortunately, it's difficult to force a guiana chestnut to flower indoors.
Some growers suggest that using plant food with a high percentage of potassium will encourage the plant to bloom. Unfortunately, the flowers develop when the seasons change, and it's very difficult to emulate this indoors.
If you live in a warmer part of the country and are growing Money Tree outdoors, it's much more likely to flower. As long as you meet its basic soil, watering and light needs, a mature plant should bloom. And you should look forward to it too. The flowers of a Guiana chestnut are some of the largest tree flowers in nature. Their white or yellow petals fold back to reveal a burst of long, red stamens which look like a firework.

Why is my Money Tree dropping leaves?

Money Tree leaves usually drop because you’ve overwatered your plant. It sounds counterintuitive, but the first sign that the roots are drowning is actually crispy leaves falling off the plant.
Money Tree (Pachira Aquatica)